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Hornet boys volleyball looks for three-peat

The Emmaus boys volleyball team has been a model of consistency over the last two seasons. It has also been the class of the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference and District 11.

The Green Hornets have won back-to-back District 11 Class 3A championships and also won the EPC title the last two years. It has been one of the best runs since the Hornets dominated the sport in the old EPC two decades ago under head coach Dave Stever.

“The last two years have been very exciting,” said fifth-year head coach Ken Dunkle. “I took over the program and we’ve been fortunate enough to win ever since I got here. It’s been a lot of fun, but the kids put a lot of hard work into it too.”

James Haag, Tom Mazzella, Cam Parsons, Mitchell Shoemaker, Matt Swanson, and Sam Workman all graduated and have left their marks on the program. A new group of leaders look to emerge to continue the winning ways.

Some of the top returnees include Stephen Reynolds, Harrison Dougherty and Owen Kennedy.

A couple of star basketball players will also enter the fray as newcomers to the program in seniors Ethan Parvel, Zach Sabol, and Mark Swedberg.

“We have an experienced core group coming back that I’m excited about,” said Dunkle. “Having graduated a four-year starting setter (Cam), we need to build the team chemistry with a new setter. I’m confident that Sophomore Gannon DeFrain will do a great job.

“Our main goal for the season is going to be to keep improving as the season progresses. If we can achieve our goal of continuous improvement, I think we should be a postseason contender.”

Emmaus begins its 2019 season with an EPC foe in Liberty on Friday on the road. The Hornets’ first two regular season games are on the road. Their home opener is March 28 against Pocono Mountain West.

PRESS PHOTO BY NANCYSCHOLZStephen Reynolds is one of just a few returning players on this year's Emmaus varsity boys volleyball team.