Hornets’ season ends in D-11 quarterfinal
The Emmaus High School girls basketball team finished up a successful season last weekend, dropping a game to Nazareth 41-34 on Friday night at Catasauqua High School, ending the season at 14-11 overall.
Head coach Kelsey Gallagher was happy with season as a whole.
“Overall, I’m extremely proud of our girls and what we accomplished this season,” said Gallagher. “As a program we continue to take steps forward, and that wouldn’t be possible if it wasn’t for the commitment that these girls have to this program and each other.
“We had some great moments, we had exciting wins over Parkland and Northampton, which our program hasn’t seen in a while. We had a thriller overtime win against the second seed, Pocono Mountain West in the EPC quarterfinals to make our first trip ever to the EPC semifinal game. Unfortunately, our season ended earlier than we hoped when we came up short on Friday night to a very good program.”
It is the third consecutive year Emmaus played Nazareth in the District 11 6A tournament and the Blue Eagles have been a thorn in the side of the Green Hornets, having beaten them their last 10-plus games overall.
“Nazareth is a good program with a lot of experience in the postseason,” Gallagher said. “Friday night, Nazareth did a great job at changing up their defense, which ultimately got us out of our flow and led to a lot of silly mistakes and turnovers. With the amount of turnovers we finished with, we still had a lot of good looks at the basket, things that rimmed in and out, but unfortunately it wasn’t our night.”
Emmaus had plenty of positives this year, including defeating teams like Parkland and Northampton for the first time in almost five seasons. The coach and players also enjoyed their time together at practice or on bus rides to and from games.
“These girls were so much fun to be around,” said Gallagher. “We had a lot of laughs, but we also knew when we had to take care of business. As a program we were able to raise money during our shoot-A-Thon, which raised money for two current students at Emmaus who were diagnosed with cancer. Watching our girls come together to help their classmates but ultimately do it together is what high school sports is all about.
“On or off the court these girls execute with so much heart and pride and that’s all I can ever ask for as a coach. These girls have worked so hard, and they’ve earned all the recognition they received this season. It was heartbreaking to experience our season end on Friday, but I know our younger kids have motivation going into the offseason to work on their craft. We can’t thank our seniors enough for their contributions on and off the court, and we wish them nothing but the best in their next chapter.”
The Green Hornets were fairly young this season and will only lose one starter. A majority of the team will be returning next season, looking to make a deeper run in the postseason.
“We have so much to look forward to next season, we lose one starter to graduation,” said Gallagher. “Not only did we go 9-10 deep, three of those girls were freshmen logging some quality minutes down the stretch. Our JV team ended the season with only four losses, and our freshman team with just one loss on the year. The future at Emmaus looks bright and I’m looking forward to getting back into the gym with the girls during the offseason.”
Senior Paige Inman will graduate from this team, along with classmates Casey Bender and Kaitlyn Dill.