Log In

Reset Password

Trojans beat Kids to reach title game

The Parkland High School football team went into the locker room at halftime of its game last weekend needing to find another gear. The Trojans were leading by just three points and wanted to keep their season going.

“Coach Moncman told the team all week, we battled back through so much adversity on and off the field to get to this point,” said assistant coach Mike Facchiano. “The 2022 season has certainly been a trying time for all of us beyond a 6-4 regular season. Seeing us win in the semifinals and return to the district final was special and it meant we had another week together to prepare for a district title. Former players of ours have been reminding our guys that the best thing about winning in playoffs is another week with your brothers.”

Sixth-seeded Parkland (8-4 overall) took a 10-7 halftime lead and turned it into a 31-13 victory last Thursday night over second-seeded Northampton in the District 11 6A semifinals at Al Erdosy Stadium.

Trey Tremba caught a 19-yard touchdown pass from Luke Spang in the Trojans’ first possession to gain back a cushion. Then in the fourth quarter, back-to-back scores by Nakhi Bullock and Tremba pushed the advantage to 31-7. Tremba also had a rushing touchdown in the first quarter and Gryffin Mitstifer added a 37-yard field goal to complete the Parkland scoring.

“We went into the game challenging our offensive and defensive lines that the Kids had big/strong linemen that can push people,” Facchiano said. “I feel that the defensive line got a consistent push on them and was able to use our speed to cover our run responsibilities. Offensive line showed great resiliency pushing for four quarters allowing our run game to help us chunk down the field and score.”

The fourth seed, Freedom, now awaits in the district final on Friday night at Cottingham Stadium in Easton. The Patriots (10-2) defeated the top seed, Emmaus, 28-27 last Thursday night. These two teams know each other well and have met in finals in years past. Parkland beat Freedom 21-13 back in week three of the regular season this year.

“We feel like every game with Freedom, regular season or playoffs, is always a close game that go down to the final snap of the ball,” said Facchiano. “We know that Freedom is a well-coached team that had to overcome the start to their season like us to get to this point. Our program has a lot of respect for [head] coach [Jason] Roeder and his staff.”

The Patriots have some offensive firepower that Parkland will be focused on this weekend.

“While it is obvious that [Jalen] Fletcher is one of the better running backs in the league, Freedom has also shown the ability to have [Ethan] Neidig keep/run the ball more over the last couple weeks,” Facchiano said. “They are similar to us in that their best games come when they are balanced in the run/pass game.”

District 11 officials expressed great gratitude to the City of Easton for its efforts to allow the district title game to be played at Cottingham Stadium. Mayor Sal Panto, Councilman/Vice Mayor Ken Brown, and Dr. Frank D’Angelo and the Easton Area Athletic Department were the key players involved in arranging for the big game to be played at one of the Lehigh Valley’s best high school football venues.

PRESS PHOTO BY DON HERB Trey Tremba and Nate Kemmerer celebrate a Trojan touchdown during Parkland's district semifinal win over Northampton.
PRESS PHOTO BY DON HERB Parkland kicker Gryffin Mitstifer boots a field goal against Northampton.
PRESS PHOTO BY DON HERB Marquez Winberly carries the ball during Parkland's district semifinal win over Northampton.
PRESS PHOTO BY DON HERB Parkland's Russell Clark brings down a Northampton ball carrier.