Northampton’s football season can be divided into two seasons.
First, there is the 5-1 start in which the Konkrete Kids posted three consecutive shutouts and averaged 46 points a game after their opening-game loss to Parkland.
Then there are the final five games that saw the Kids drop their final two games of the season to Whitehall and Easton, the latter in their first District 11 playoff appearance since 2003.
On the football field, Brad Panto sees the big picture and deals with his share of challenges.
He understands patience.
Off the field, he will endure one of his biggest challenges when he begins service in the United States Army after graduation.
As a result, the senior is well aware of his team’s plight this season as they end their season against archrival Northampton this week.
“It takes time to turn this around,” Panto said. “You don’t do it over night with new coaches and a new system.
Former Whitehall head football coach Brian Gilbert read the movements of the Giants’ Saquon Barkley who nearly rushed for 4,000 career yards as a Zephyr.
Gilbert also had a good read on Barkley when the rookie ran for a career-high 142 yards and scored three overall touchdowns in his team’s 38-35 victory over Tampa Bay at Met Life Stadium Sunday afternoon.
Wilquon Clemons won’t forget when he won his team’s Most Valuable Player (MVP) award after the Thanksgiving Day game last year.
The then junior running back finished the day with 106 yards on 14 carries.
A year later with the game hours away, Clemons has a melancholy feeling mixed with a sense of reality.
“It’s sad,” said Clemons. It’s hard to realize that this will be my last game. I know I have to play even harder and do even better.
“Since we didn’t make the playoffs, this is our championship game.”
Catasauqua’s Amy Huber was ready for her recent powder puff clash with Northampton, but she and her teammates were caught a little off guard.
With the game at Northampton, the host Konkrete Kids instituted a new 7-on-7 format instead of the traditional 11-on-11 among some other changes in the format.
The Roughies battled, but they fell in the high-scoring, 62-44 clash on Nov. 4.
Sebastian Henry loves a challenge and knows about honor and dedication.
The Catasauqua senior has tackled some challenges in his athletic career, and he has another one ahead next year.
Henry, who has run cross country and participated in track and wrestling, plans to join the United States Marine Corps after high school and enlist in the infantry for hands-on combat.
“This is something that I have thought about since seventh grade,” he said. “To me, it is about what the symbol means and how we should honor and respect those have guarded our nation.
Andrew Martinez knew his senior year would be different.
This summer, he found out just how different it would be.
Martinez was indoctrinated to lead a triple-option offense under new head coach Mike McClarin, an offense he previously has not seen.
Through 10 weeks, Martinez has done an above-average job at running the show, and he has one last shot in his high school career on Thanksgiving morning.
“I was a little confident with it at the beginning of the year,” said the senior quarterback. “But around the Notre Dame, things got interesting.
Judging Catasauqua’s football season simply shouldn’t be on wins and losses.
Instead, it should be viewed in the picture of a young team growing along the way toward next season.
The Roughies ended their regular season with a 61-27 loss to Northwestern last Friday night and finished with an overall 1-9 record. Now, they will await Northampton on Thanksgiving morning.
Over the final two weeks of the season, Catasauqua head girls’ soccer coach Chris Hain noticed some issues with attrition with his squad.
Yet, the Roughies still had enough drive and determination to overcome any physical problems.
“Over the last two weeks, the girls have really give everything they have,” said head coach Chris Hain about his squad. “We may look a little tired physically, but they still have a lot of heart and drive.
“Their heart and soul in the play has been there all year long.”
In their recent game against Notre Dame, Catasauqua was trailing 14-0 in the first quarter and was pleased with its progress.
However, a fumble late in the quarter proved costly as Notre Dame added 14 points in the final 30 seconds.