In the Catasauqua baseball circles, life has certainly taken a recent upswing with a potential continuing rise in the near future.
Despite a loss Tuesday to Pen Argyl, the Roughies began play this week with a torrid four-game winning streak in which they posted an impressive pair of 12-0 shutouts and outscored their opponents by a 37-6 margin.
As a result, Catty clinched a PIAA District 11 Class 2A playoff berth for the first time in three years, and there are plenty of indications about some possible further advancement.
The Rough Riders jumped on the Crusaders of Notre Dame Green Pond in the bottom of the first inning last Saturday and beat Notre Dame 6-3. Catty improved to 9-5 for the season, and 8-4 in the Colonial League South and secured a District 11 AA playoff spot.
Catasauqua's Ra'Von Burton understands the importance regarding the next few weeks of the track season.
A junior, Burton has been recognized as an elite member of the team's 4 x100 relay team that has established itself as one of the elite unit during the Colonial League, District 11, and PIAA state meet the past few seasons. During that time, Burton has flirted with achieving a new mark among his own talents in the 100 meter dash.
This season, he is ready to reach a new individual level in his event.
100 - 1. Cam Richardson (Northwestern) 10.8, 2. Trent Silfies (So. Lehigh) 11.1, 3. Javante Tooley (Wilson) 11.3;
200 - 1. Caleb Johnson (No. Lehigh) 22.5, 2. Cam Richardson (Northwestern) 22.9, 3. Austin Shupp (Palmerton);
400 - 1. Caleb Johnson (No. Lehigh) 50.92, 2. Collin Bergey (So. Lehigh) 51.6, 3. Jryi Davis (Bangor) 52.4;
800 - 1. Kyle Gonoude (Salisbury) 2:03.9, 2. Mathew Handley (Wilson) 2:08.6, 3. Anthony Brinkley (Catasauqua) 2:09.1;
For the past three seasons, District 11 has held their baseball championships at Coca-Cola Park, home of the Lehigh Valley IronPigs. It's return for 2013 was in jeopardy after the district had to pick up the full $8,000.00 cost for the use of the stadium last season when their previous sponsorship from Coca-Cola ended following the 2011 tournament. Fortunately, two new sponsors have stepped up to pick up half of the tab for this year's cost, allowing District 11 to return to the premier facility.
Catasauqua's Zac Edwards received an award given to recognize and honor a demonstration of excellence in scholarship, leadership, and community service at the recently Donley Awards for Excellence breakfast.
Edwards was Catasauqua High School's representative. Zac's parents, Robert and Teresa, also attended the breakfast along with Catasauqua High School Principal Dave Ascani and guidance counselor Eric Snyder.
The banquet was Monday, April 15, at the Best Western Hotel.
Jordon Dardas has a knack for coming up with big hits.
During Friday's softball game against Salisbury, Dardas once again provided a huge hit in the game's most crucial moment.
Just two days after blasting a key home run against Southern Lehigh, Dardas once again went long ball. After the Falcons (3-10 overall; 1-8 in Colonial League) rallied from a five-run deficit and tied it at six in the fourth inning, Dardas used a three-run homer in the sixth with two outs to lift the Rough Riders (9-2 overall; 8-1 in Colonial League) to a 9-6 victory.
For Catasauqua head baseball coach Steve Bradley and his troops, this can be a crucial week of the season.
The Roughies began the week with an overall 5-5 mark and had revived aspirations about having a shot at the Colonial league playoff and making a trek to the district playoffs as well. Those hopes were rejuvenated during a recent four-game span before the week in which they won three of the contests and generated 44 runs in the process.
Catty High and Pen Argyl High School remained tied for first place in the North Division of the Colonial League, both at 8-1. But, both have also clinched District 11 AA playoff spots with wins on Monday afternoon.
Junior catcher Janae Matos continued to rip the ball going 2-for-3 with a double and two RBIs against Karlee Krchnavi of Palisades in a 5-2 win at the Bill Kennedy Complex.
The Rough Riders, 6-5 overall and 5-4 in the Colonial League North, got a six-run fourth inning at the Bill Kennedy Baseball Field in Catasauqua for a 7-3 win over Palisades on Monday afternoon. The Pirates fell to 5-6.
Catasauqua has to win three more games out of the seven league games left to grab a District 11 AA playoff berth.
Catty was up 7-0 heading to the sixth inning when Palisades put two runs on the Catty scoreboard. They would add one more in the seventh.