Catasauqua’s cross country teams continue to elevate their status.
In a recent home meet, both the boys’ and girls’ teams picked up a pair of wins, marking the first time in recent history the Roughies achieved that mark.
The boys defeated Salisbury and Palmerton, and the girls beat Northwestern and Palmerton on the team’s senior night.
“We have been doing phenomenal,” said head coach Kyle Rusnock. “Me and (assistant coach Dave Burker) couldn’t remember when one of our teams did something like that.
As they head into the height of their season, Catasauqua’s girls’ soccer team will face some challenges.
After Tuesday’s postponement against Lehighton due to rain, the Roughies had a 2-1-1 record and will face a hectic month of games ahead.
They will need to battle through some injuries, most notably losing freshman scorer Brielle Davis to a broken leg.
“We have had some injuries,” said head coach Chris Hain. “But we have to be able to play through them the rest of the season.
“Brielle (Davis) was one of our better scorers. That one hurt.”
For Catasauqua’s football team this fall, it isn’t just about the wins and losses.
It continues to be about the process and moral step along the way.
The Roughies watched game in which they missed a handful of scoring opportunities in the opening half to a fairly evenly matched Pen Argyl team, and they eventually fell to the Green Knights, 28-7 at Alumni Field to drop to 0-3 on the season.
Since they began workouts in late spring, Catasauqua head football coach Mike McClarin admittedly has seen improvement in his team.
Now, the Roughies have to translate that effort into wins.
With their 48-0 defeat to Northern Lehigh Aug. 29, the Roughies fell to 0-2 on the season and they have been outscored, 90-12.
“We’re playing hard,” said McClarin. “We were so close to two scores in the first half (against Northern Lehigh) that could have made it 14-14.
Before the season, Catasauqua appeared to have two very competitive games on their early schedule against Bangor and Northern Lehigh, both of whom were coming off losing seasons like the Roughies.
Bangor gained some late-season momentum last year with three-straight wins to end the season, and the Slaters rode that wave to a 42-12 victory over the Roughies.
Northern Lehigh, though, loomed as likely target, as the Bulldogs began their season last week at Wilson with a 12-game losing streak that dated back to 2016.
Unfortunately for Catty, that situation quickly changed.
These days, patience is the buzz word around the Catasauqua football program.
With new systems on both sides of the ball, the Roughies will take time to jell as a unit and take some lumps along the way.
The first trace of evidence was a 42-12 defeat at Bangor Aug. 24 to open the season. The Roughies had trouble getting in-sync most of the evening, and they found themselves down 35-6 at halftime.
Overall, Catty had 173 total yards, but they gave up 334.
In more ways than one, Jason Schneck knew he had to take his game to the next level.
He was looking forward to his summer playing days, shifting his time between the Catasauqua Connie Mack team and the boys’ basketball team.
Both of them produced some favorable results.
In baseball, Schneck hit a team-high .429 and also led the team with 20 runs scored. He also posted an overall 2-2 record with a 3.44 ERA and 20 strikeouts and 14 walks in 20.1 innings.
It was just a matter of realizing his potential and stance with the team.
In the 29th annual Tournament of Champions (TOC), the ending was ironic and also fitting.
Curmaci Dental and Blue Monkey – both who had the same players on both teams – met in the recent TOC final at the Catasauqua Middle School instead of the Catty Playground due to weather issues.
In the end, it was Derek Hall who led Curmaci to a 74-64 victory over Blue Monkey. It also was a test of attrition as Curmaci had five players and Blue Monkey had six.
It was a true Catty-Northampton flavor night, as all but one player was either a former Roughie or Konkrete Kid.
It will be one of the key words to describe the Catasauqua football program this season.
New head coach Mike McClarin is one of the many new factors on the Roughies’ landscape for the fall.
McClarin, a former Liberty High standout and former assistant coach at the school as well as Dieruff, has been impressed with the early energy and optimism from his players. The Roughies are coming off a 3-9 season and had posted an overall 9-36 mark the previous four seasons under former head coach Phil Dorn.
Northampton Legion head coach Mike Bodnar didn’t want to see history repeat itself.
Unfortunately, it did.
Nazareth shutout Northampton in consecutive games to capture the Northampton County Legion (NORCO) title in a best-of-three series. Northampton suffered the same fate to Hellertown last year in the championship round.
“The same thing happened again,” said Bodnar. “Maybe the pressure gets to them. They stop doing what they have been doing the whole year.”