Good Wednesday to all of my tennis followers out there!

Boy, it’s been a busy, busy time on the courts since the last post ON THE BLOG. We had some modest weather issues, but we are back on track for the most part as many of the makeup matches have been, well, made up. Some teams are even past the halfway point of the regular season. Which means we can start taking a closer look at postseason possibilities, especially in Class 2A where things are always tricky for seeding and qualifying spots.

Before we get too far ahead of ourselves, let’s look back at an early candidate for 2017 Match of the Year. Look, the most anticipated match of any season centers around the Abington Heights-Scranton Prep yearly showdown. It may not be fair, but it’s true. They are the two tennis powerhouses of the Lackawanna League. However, even when those two get together, they will be hard pressed to top what happened last week when Abington Heights defeated North Pocono, 3-2, in arguably the most contested match in recent memory.

Don’t believe me?

There are not very many times in the course of a regular season when you get three-set matches. But in this battle, there were four in five head-to-head matches. That is remarkable and intense tennis by both athletes.

Plus, take a look at just how close the matches were:

Abington Heights 3, North Pocono 2

Singles

  • No. 1: Lauren Carroll (AH) over Sarah Tofilska, 3-6, 7-6 (2), 6-4
  • No. 2: Sarah Sposito (NP) over Clare Della Valle, 4-6, 6-0, 7-5
  • No. 3: Lauren Koczwara (AH) over Haley Zemek, 6-0, 6-0.

 

Doubles

  • No. 1: Megan Carney-Devyn Davis (NP) over Holly Ross-Brooke Dennison, 5-7, 6-4, 6-4
  • No. 2: Savannah Blaum-Julia Poulson-Houser (AH) over Tiana Mackarey-Ashley Dunn, 2-6, 6-4, 6-2.

 

 

For Abington Heights, it was a match where it was able to avenge a loss from 2016. For North Pocono, yes, it was disappointing, but certainly encouraging as it moves forward this season. It’s clear, the Lady Trojans and Lady Comets are two of the best overall teams in the Lackawanna League and in District 2 Class 3A.

Hazleton Area and Williamsport are strong again this season. So this could be an entertaining bracket this postseason.

So, why am I looking back? Well, the outcome of that match certainly piques the interest for when North Pocono travels to Scranton Prep today (Wednesday). That one should feature close and intense matches much like the Abington Heights-North Pocono match did.

The singles matches are going to be very tight.

And this is a healthy situation for the Lackawanna League, which will benefit as programs across the league improve.

 

 

Lady Crusaders make move

Lauren Palmiter

Another program starting to get on track is Holy Cross. The Lady Crusaders got off to a tough start with a 4-1 loss to Abington Heights and a 3-2 loss to Scranton Prep. They are 4-2 overall and will be challenging for a postseason spot for the District 2 Class 2A playoffs for sure.

Lauren Palmiter is one of the standout singles players in the league. She has a 4-2 record with her losses coming to No. 1 Gabi Jakubek and No. 2 Lauren Carroll. Theresa Dutter is 3-3 at No. 2 and Caroline Cadden is unbeaten at No. 3 singles.

Holy Cross, too, will get a good gauge on itself when it hosts Wallenpaupack this afternoon.

 


 

A LOOK AHEAD

 

 

OK, as we keep moving forward, believe it or not we are going to have to start looking at the big picture. District 2 tennis guru Mike Ognosky will love me posting this information, again, and it is important to keep track.

 

OCTOBER 5-6 AND 10
  • Lauren Carroll

    DISTRICT 2 TEAM CHAMPIONSHIPS: AA Semifinals begin at 11:00 AM; AAA Semifinals at 12:30 PM
    The site for the Team Championship Semifinals & Finals will be at Kirby Park.
    Thursday, October 5th & Friday, October 6th Quarterfinals will be at Higher Seed.

 

  • 2016 Champions: Abington Heights (3A); Scranton Prep (2A)

 

 

OCTOBER 10
  • DISTRICT 2 SEEDING MEETING: Singles & Doubles, 7 PM. at Dunmore High School

 

 

OCTOBER 12-13
  • Brianna Pizzano

    DISTRICT 2 SINGLES CHAMPIONSHIPS: Oct. 12 (First three rounds) at Kirby Park and Wilkes University; Oct. 13 Semifinals and Finals 1 PM at Kirby Park, Wilkes-Barre.

 

  • 2016 Champions: Stephanie Mazurek, Hazleton Area (3A); Brianna Pizzano, Wyoming Area (2A)Note: Both are returning.

 

 

 

 

 

OCTOBER 17-18
  • Gabi Jakubek

    DISTRICT 2 DOUBLES CHAMPIONSHIPS: Oct. 17 (First three rounds) at Kirby Park and Wilkes University; Oct. 18, Semifinals and Finals, 1 PM at Kirby Park, Wilkes-Barre.

 

  • 2016 Champions: Stephanie Mazurek-Lily Nowak, Hazleton Area (3A); Gabi Jakubek-Tatiana Klacko, Scranton Prep (2A).

 

 

 


 

INSIDE THE NUMBERS

 

 

North Pocono’s Sarah Sposito

 

2017 LACKAWANNA LEAGUE STANDINGS

Through Sept. 13

Courtesy piaad2.org

 

 

2017 DISTRICT 2 STANDINGS

Through Sept. 13

Courtesy piaad2.org

 

 

2017 LACKAWANNA LEAGUE SINGLES RECORDS

Through Sept. 13

 

Abington Heights (8-0)

Delaware Valley   (3-3)

 

    North Pocono       (7-1)

 

Lauren Carroll

7–0

Taylor Moglia

3–3

Sarah Tofilska

7—1

Clare Della Valle

7–1

Katie Cooney

3–3

Sarah Sposito

8—0

Lauren Koczwara

8–0

Jules Anderson

2–3

Haley Zemek

6–2

Savannah Blaum

1–0

Gia Cicilio

1–0

Scranton

(5-3)

 

Wallenpaupack

(4-3)

 

Mary Huffman

5–3

Phoebe Cykosky

3–0

Phoebe Cykosky

5–1

Megan Musso

5–3

CLASS

3A

Heidi Washburn

5–2

Theresa Huffman

4–3

Hannah Vennie

1–1

Hannah Vennie

1–1

Nadi Mahdavi

0–1

Tori Weber

1–0

Tori Weber

2–3

 

Dunmore

(0-8)

 

Holy Cross

(4-2)

 

Honesdale

(2-5)

 

Mid Valley

(3-4)

 

Anna Chiaro

1–7

Lauren Palmiter

4–2

Megan Rembish

2–5

Lyndsey Medric

3–4

Alyssa Bielinski

0–1

Theresa Dutter

3–3

Madison Palmer

0–6

Courtney Davies

1–3

Lauren Brown

0–8

Aurora Monacelli

0–1

Leigha Welsh

2–5

Karah Laboranti

0–7

Maren Oprisko

0–3

Caroline Cadden

5–0

Lydia Grossman

1–0

Morgan Haefele

1–2

Katie McKitish

0–4

Montrose

(1-7)

 

Riverside

(1-5)

 

Scranton Prep

(7-0)

 

Valley View (4-2)

 

McKenzie Reeves

2–5

Samantha Labrosky

4–2

Gabi Jakubek

6–0

Kiana DeJesus

3–3

Searra Muller

1–7

Alyssa Chesek

1–4

Carly Habeeb

7–0

Sidney Reinfurt

0–1

Angie Ford

2–6

Trinity Gable

5–1

Isabel Hou

6–1

Gianna Snell

1–4

Katelyn Henry

0–1

Mia Capalongo

0–1

Vanessa Antenori

4–2

West Scranton

(1-5)

 

Western Wayne

(1-3)

 

C.J. Grasso

1–5

CLASS

2A

Allison Mattern

0–4

Rebecca Johnson

3–2

Samantha Pritzlaff

1–3

Briana Moraca

1–5

Maddy Godfrey

0–2

Jenny Vongmany

0-1

Sam Atcavage

2–0

 

 


 

 

RANKINGS

 

 

Scranton’s Mary Huffman

 

 

JOBY’S TOP 5 TEAMS

 

Not any movement among the Top 5 teams. North Pocono holds steady at No. 3 after the close match with North Pocono. There are some teams knocking on the door, though.

 

1. Scranton Prep Classics (7-0)

Last Rank: 1

Beat Scranton, 5-0; Beat Montrose, 5-0. Next: Today vs. North Pocono.

 

 

2. Abington Heights Lady Comets (8-0)

Last Rank: 2

Beat North Pocono, 3-2; Beat Mid Valley, 4-1; Beat Montrose, 5-0. Next: Today at Valley View.

 

 

3. North Pocono Lady Trojans (7-1)

Last Rank: 3

Lost to Abington Heights, 3-2; Beat Honedale, 5-1. Next: Today at Scranton Prep.

 

 

4. Scranton Lady Knights (5-3)

Last Rank: 4

Lost to Scranton Prep, 5-0; Beat Western Wayne, 3-2. Next: Thursday vs. Holy Cross.

 

 

5. Valley View Cougars (4-2)

Last Rank: 5

Beat Dunmore, 5-0; Beat Montrose, 4-1. Next: Today vs. Abington Heights.

 

 

Teams to watch: Wallenpaupack (4-3); Holy Cross (4-2).

 


 

JOBY’S TOP 5 PLAYERS

 

In the match between Lauren Carroll and Sarah Tofilska, it’s clear, they are two of the best singles players in the Lackawanna League. Today, Gabi Jakubek and Sarah Tofilska will go head-to-head. North Pocono’s Sarah Sposito is our first new entry into the ranking after beating Abington Heights’ Clare Della Valle last week. .

 

 

Jakubek

1. Gabi Jakubek, Scranton Prep (6-0)

Last Rank: 1.

Remained undefeated and is the strongest player in the league.

 

 

 

Carroll

2. Lauren Carroll, Abington Heights (7-0)

Last Rank: 2.

Outlasted Sarah Tofilska in three sets to hold onto the No. 2 ranking.

 

 

 

Tofilska

3. Sarah Tofilska, North Pocono (7-1)

Last Rank: 3.

Gave a great effort against Lauren Carroll. Really a strong player.

 

 

Cykosky

4. Phoebe Cykosky, Wallenpaupack (5-1)

Last Rank: 4.

Was battling Gabi Jakubek when rain halted the match. Had a win over Allison Mattern in straight sets.

 

 

Sposito

5. Sarah Sposito (8-0)

Last Rank: NR.

Earned her way into the ranking wit win over Clare Della Valle last week.

 

 

 

Players to watch: Carly Habeeb, Scranton Prep (7-0), Megan Musso (SCR) 5-2, Heidi Washburn (WAL) 5-2, Lauren Koczwara (AH) 8-0, Taylor Moglia (DV) 3-3, Lauren Palmitier (HC) 4-2, Haley Zemek (NP) 6-2; Samantha Labrosky (RIV) 4-2; Theresa Dutter (HC) 3-3; Caroline Cadden (HC) 5-0.

 


 

 

WHAT’S AHEAD?

 

OK, today is a busy schedule. Make sure you pick up The Times-Tribune for full results.

SCHEDULE

TODAY

Scranton Prep’s Carly Habeeb

West Scranton at Delaware Valley
Abington Heights at Valley View
Wallenpaupack at Holy Cross
Honesdale at Mid Valley
North Pocono at Scranton Prep
Riverside at Dunmore
Montrose at Western Wayne

THURSDAY
Dunmore at Abington Heights
Delaware Valley at Wallenpaupack
Valley View at Honesdale
Holy Cross at Scranton
West Scranton at Riverside
Western Wayne at North Pocono
Scranton Prep at Mid Valley

MONDAY

Valley View’s Kiana DeJesus

Wallenpaupack at West Scranton
Honesdale at Dunmore
Scranton at Delaware Valley
Riverside at Abington Heights
Montrose at Holy Cross
Valley View at Scranton Prep
Mid Valley at Western Wayne

WEDNESDAY
Abington Heights at Honesdale
West Scranton at Scranton
Wallenpaupack at Riverside
Delaware Valley at Montrose
Scranton Prep at Dunmore
Holy Cross at North Pocono
Western Wayne at Valley View

 


 

That is all for today.

I am hoping to catch 5 minutes of the North Pocono at Scranton Prep match on my way into work. I have some responsibilities in the office these days.

Next ON THE BLOG will appear WEDNESDAY, SEPT. 20

ENJOY!