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HERSHEY — The mental side of the game is often more than half the battle in wrestling.
Mechanicsburg’s Joey Krulock knows that, and he learned it quickly back in December when he suffered three losses in four bouts at the Beast of the East, including a 5-4 loss to Central Dauphin’s Colton Peppelman in the seventh-place match.
“Mentally, I’ve grown incredibly,” he said Saturday at the District 3-AAA tournament. “My brother’s been helping me a lot with that. That’s one of the biggest things with wrestling. You can be the strongest, most technical wrestler out there, but if you don’t have it up here mentally, you can blow it all, especially on a big stage like this.”
Krulock put together a nearly flawless bout in the 170-pound final, scoring three takedowns and a reversal to avenge his loss to Peppelman with an 8-4 victory Saturday night at Hersheypark Arena.
It’s the senior’s first district gold after a runner-up finish a year ago, and continues his streak of 19 straight wins since his December slump.
“It’s tough wrestling a friend out there, but when you’re out there, you’re enemies,” Krulock said of his title bout. “It was an awesome match. It felt great after, and it felt great during the match too.”
The following swimmers qualified for the District 3 Swimming Championships to be held at Cumberland Valley High School on Friday, March 1 & Saturday, March 2. For a schedule of events, click here.
- Jr. Charles Hill – 50 Free & 100 Fly
- Fr. Caitlin Weeden – 50 Free & 100 Fly
- Fr. Katelyn Kopacko – 50 Fee
The following wrestlers will compete in the District 3 Championships to be held at the Historic Hersheypark Arena on Friday, February 22 & Saturday, February 23. For a wrestling schedule of events, click here.
- 160: Mitchell Ramsey
- 170: Joey Krulock
- 220: Lucas Chestnut
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The program that few District 3 girls basketball coaches want to challenge is off and running.
Tianna Jackson and Briana Mack, seeing her first live action in nearly two weeks, combined for 25 points as Harrisburg landed a tough 47-40 victory over Mechanicsburg Friday in the Class AAAA preliminary round.
Able to deter the Wildcats with their athleticism and quick initial step, the Cougars seized control late in the opening half as a Cree Watt runner ignited a 12-2 run and 30-19 edge at the break.
And despite solid work by the frontcourt tandem of Cecily Carl and Hannah Brown, the host Wildcats never fully recovered down the stretch. Harrisburg, seeded 18th, earned a Round of 16 date with No. 2 Wilson next week.
“We knew coming here was going to be tough. Playing on anyone’s home floor is tough,” Harrisburg coach Dwan Lee said.
“We wanted to get up early and kind of get them out of sync. But I told my girls, if we don’t make shots early, or use our pressure and turn it into offensive points, it was going to be a struggle. It’s playoff time. You only need to win by a point.”
While Jackson (15 points) led the Cougars with nine first-half points, Mechanicsburg relied heavily on 5-foot-10 Brown and 6-foot-3 Carl to keep pace. The pair shared 31 of Mechanicsburg’s total haul, evidence that Harrisburg’s taxing five-guard rotation was setting the pace.
Between Watt, Jackson, freshman Tysha Brown and starters Quencey Hickerson (seven points) and Briana Sye, Harrisburg cranked up its man pressure and wore down the Wildcats.
“We worked really hard this week on trying to get the pace on where we wanted it, but it’s obviously very hard to recreate that,” said Mechanicsburg coach Clay McAllister. “The up-tempo and run outs hurt. The pace in the second half was obviously much more in our wheelhouse.”
Carl, posting a game-high 21 points, netted nine in the third period, pulling the 15th-seeded Wildcats (15-8) within 44-34.
Still, after Carl sliced the lead to eight early in the fourth, Mack’s free throw and Jackson’s hard drive to the rim pressed the Harrisburg lead back to 47-36 with 4:05 left.
Mechanicsburg would only muster Carl’s stickback and a Jordan Hertz steal and deuce in the final minutes. Mack, returning from a nasty case of bronchitis, chipped in nine rebounds while freshman forward Katera McNeil swatted three of Harrisburg’s eight blocked shots.
Brown finished with a double-double, adding 10 boards.
“What is there like eight teams playing prelims? That’s probably the team you don’t want,” said McAllister. “We fought hard, there’s no doubt about that.”
EPLER ON TWITTER: @threejacker
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Mechanicsburg girls basketball coach Clay McAllister said he could see this matchup coming and knew it might no be a good one for his team. His concerns played out as the physical Harrisburg Cougars took out his Wildcats, 47-40, in the preliminary round of the District 3-AAAA basketball tournament Friday night at Mechanicsburg Area Senior High School.
The 15th-seeded Wildcats mirrored the Cougars as both teams started out slow this season while working in younger players, but both came on strong over the second half of the season.
Harrisburg (13-10) started 2-7 but have now gone 11-3 with losses to Cumberland Valley, Central Dauphin and Central Dauphin East, three teams ranked in the top seven in District 3. Factor in a split with State College and Mifflin County — the top two Class AAAA teams in District 6 and the schedule has prepared the Cougars for anything.
Mechanicsburg (15-8) started 0-3 and finished their season with two losses to Palmyra and Hershey — the former the Mid-Penn champs and the latter the second place team in the Keystone Division. Add in losses to Eastern York, Lower Dauphin, Spring Grove and now Harrisburg, and the schedule hasn’t been any type of cakewalk.
Cecily Carl scored to open the game for the Wildcats but the Cougars got two breakout layups from Briana Sye and Tianna Jackson to take a 4-2 lead. Mechanicsburg’s Morgan Vasiliu hit two free throws to tie the game, but Tysha Brown hit a foul shot and the Cougars never trailed after that point.
They stretched the lead to 13-6 and eventually 18-10 as Quency Hickerson, Brown, and Alexis Marshall all drained 3-pointers.
The Wildcats rallied behind Carl, Hannah Brown and a trey from Meghan Ross cut the lead to one point at 18-17 at the 3:18 mark of the second quarter.
Cree Watt hit a runner and Jackson scored twice in the paint, with the second one a conventional three-point play and the Cougars started to expand the lead again as they finished the half on a 12-2 run to take a 30-19 lead into the locker room.
As hard as the Wildcats battled, the Cougars answered every bucket in the third quarter. Brianna Mack had two three-point plays in the quarter and Jackson added two layups in the paint.
Brown and Carl combined for 13 points in the quarter in an attempt to keep the game close.
“We tried all week in practice to simulate their speed and physicality, but it is next to impossible,” McAllister said. “We battled hard and never gave up and that is all I can ask of my team. Early on I thought we had some good looks in the paint and we had some good looks form the arc but we couldn’t get anything to go down.”
A Carl bucket to open the fourth quarter cut the deficit to 44-36 but two consecutive turnovers and the four corner spread offense allowed the Cougars to close out the contest.
“We only scored three points in that final quarter and we must do a better job of that next week,” Cougars coach Dwan Lee said. “We wanted to get a lead and spread the floor and try to pull their bigs out. We were able to get some break a ways with Tianna and get that lead. I thought we missed a lot of shots in the paint where we shouldn’t have been that close, but a win is a win and you just need to get a win to move on.”
Carl, a sophomore, led the Wildcats with 21 points and nine rebounds. Brown, a junior, added 10 points and eight rebounds.
Jackson led the Cougars with 15 points and Mack added ten points.
21 Mechanicsburg student-athletes made their college choices official on Wednesday, February 13 during the annual Signing Day. See below for the complete list. Congratulations!
|Last Name||First Name||Sport||School|
|Luker||Karli||Soccer||Penn State Berks|
Article by Steve Patterson, Chambersburg Public Opinion
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The Chambersburg boys basketball team was looking to gain a bit of momentum heading into the postseason.
Collin Farnham and the Mechanicsburg Wildcats had other ideas.
Farnham scored a game-high 23 points – 12 from beyond the arc – and the visiting Wildcats outlasted the playoff-bound Trojans 51-47 in quadruple overtime Wednesday night in a non-league regular-season finale for both teams.
“This just shows the heart and character of my kids,” Mechanicsburg coach Bob Strickler said. “My seniors are absolutely unbelievable and I hope this isn’t the last time I get the chance to be their coach – but if it is, what a way to go out.”
In the fourth overtime, the 5-foot-9 Farnham hit two free throws to put the Wildcats ahead for good 49-47 after the teams traded baskets. Drew Schankweiler, who finished with 11 points and 13 rebounds, made two more foul shots to make it 51-47 with five seconds left.
That allowed Mechanicsburg (11-11) to escape with only its second win in the last six games.
Strickler said, “You need an MIT degree to figure out the power ratings, but we did everything we could do, barring Monday night (a 60-51 loss to Lower Dauphin). We may not get in, but I feel like we deserve to be a District 3 playoff team.”
Zach Brunner added nine points and 12 rebounds for the Wildcats, who converted only 13-of-54 attempts (24.1%) from the field. Mechanicsburg made up for its shooting troubles by capitalizing on 18 Chambersburg turnovers and going 21-for-31 at the free-throw line.
“We didn’t come to play tonight,” Trojan coach Beau Gantz said. “I mean instead of concentrating on this game, they’re busy reading the newspaper about what seed we’re going to be. I knew it was going to be a dogfight and we just weren’t focused.”
Chambersburg, which finished the regular season averaging 51.8 points a game, appeared on its way to an easy victory until Farnham scored 10 points in a 12-2 run that gave the Wildcats a 32-31 lead with 2:29 remaining in the third quarter.
But Kellen Williams, who scored 20 points, answered with a 3-pointer and another three by Tay Charles gave Chambersburg (14-8) some breathing room.
Then the Trojans simply went cold, shooting only 23 percent from the floor over the next 21 minutes.
Gantz said, “I don’t want to take anything away from them (Mechanicsburg), but we just didn’t play well. We turned the ball over 18 times and we shot only 4 of 15 from the free-throw line.”
Chambersburg used a 10-1 run midway through second quarter to get control, taking a 28-17 lead at halftime. Williams’ free throw put the Trojans up 29-20 before Farnham began to rally the Wildcats. He hit consecutive layups to trim the deficit to 29-26, then buried back-to-back 3-pointers to give Mechanicsburg a one-point lead. The senior’s long 3-pointer with 59 seconds left in regulation capped a 6-0 spurt and tied the contest at 39-39.
“Collin needed four 3-pointers to break the school record and I tried not to tell him,” Strickler said. “He knew he was close and I think that was weighing on his mind a little bit early. They also ran Williams at him and Williams is a good defender – he’s a lot stronger than Collin, who grew up as our ballboy many years ago. He’s grown up within this program and you want to talk about leadership, he’s given us everything he possibly can.”
Chambersburg, which shot 36.4 percent overall, controlled the boards, outrebounding the Wildcats 33-28, including 12-8 on the offensive glass.
Evason Ogbonna added 13 points and 11 rebounds for the Trojans. No other Chambersburg player had more than seven.
Notes: The Trojans honored seven seniors – Charles, Kyle Myers, Kane Snider, Aaron Sollenberger, Mitch Stahl, Sheldon Wenger and Williams – before the start of the game.
Chambersburg 47, 4OT
Collin Farnham 7-21 5-9 23, Drew Schankweiler 3-9 5-8 11, Zach Brunner 2-12 5-6 9, Josh Smith 1-5 3-4 5, Reed Alioth 0-5 2-2 2, Evan Brosious 0-2 1-2 1, Parker Beatty 0-0 0-0 0, Brad Powell 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 13-54 21-31 51.
Kellen Williams 8-19 2-5 20, Evason Ogbonna 6-15 1-4 13, Mitch Stahl 3-10 1-1 7, Tay Charles 1-4 0-0 3, Stan Flores 1-1 0-2 2, Ryan Martin 1-4 0-1 2, Carlin Christian 0-0 0-0 0, Kyle Myers 0-0 0-0 0, Aaron Sollenberger 0-2 0-2 0. Totals 20-55 4-15 47.
Mech 10 7 15 7 2 2 2 6 – 51
Chbg 15 13 6 5 2 2 2 2 – 47
3-point shots – Mech 4-21 (Farnham 4); Chbg 3-8 (Williams 2, Charles). Shooting – Mech 24.1%; Chbg 36.4%. Rebounds – Mech 28 (Schankweiler 13); Chbg 33 (Ogbonna 11). Assists – Mech 9 (Smith 4); Chbg 17 (Williams 5). Steals – Mech 11 (Farnham 4); Chbg 9 (Ogbonna, Stahl 3). Blocked shots – Mech 3 (Brunner 2); Chbg 11 (Williams 4). Turnovers – Mech 14; Chbg 18. Fouls – Mech 17; Chbg 23. Fouled out – Charles.
JV: Chambersburg 34, Mechanicsburg 32. Cody Thompson led the Trojans with 12 points.
Article by Bill Landis, The Sentinel
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For the final eight minutes of Monday’s game against Lower Dauphin, Mechanicsburg senior guard Josh Smith played like someone who wasn’t quite ready to be done playing his final game on his home floor.
The Wildcats’ spark plug game up with five steals in the fourth quarter and scored all 13 of his points in the frame to erase what was a 15-point lead for the Falcons to start the quarter and bring the Wildcats within a basket.
But a pair of double-digit leads and 23 points from the free-throw line for Lower Dauphin proved too much for the Wildcats to overcome in a 60-51 loss in the Keystone Division finale for both teams at Mechanicsburg Area Senior High School.
The loss all but seals up both teams’ spots in the District 3-AAAA playoff field with one game remaining for each. The Wildcats came into the game at No. 24 and the Falcons came in at No. 19, just inside of the 20-team field.
The Falcons led 40-25 to start the fourth quarter, but Mechanicsburg (10-11, 6-10) used a 3-pointer from Collin Farnham to start an 18-4 run that brought the Wildcats within one with just over four minutes left. The Falcons (13-8, 9-7) stretched the lead back to seven before a bucket from Smith put Mechanicsburg within striking distance one last time at 53-51 with 38 seconds left.
The Falcons went 7-for-12 from the free-throw in the final 30 seconds as Mechanicsburg failed to get a bucket.
“They out-executed us, but our heart almost won out,” Mechanicsburg coach Bob Strickler said. “I felt like every time we tried to get something going they had an answer. But I would never put anything against the heart of Josh, Collin and Parker (Beatty). Tonight was about our three seniors.”
Farnham led all players with 22 points, including a 4-for-10 mark from 3, and Smith added eight assists and seven steals to go along with his 13 points.
Jack Miller led the Falcons with 18 points and hauled in 12 rebounds. He was a steady force all game for Lower Dauphin, which also got 14 points from Kaylor Kulina and 13 points from Luke Rutledge.
The press the Wildats utilized to get back in the game during the fourth quarter pushed the the tempo and made things hectic at times, but Miller’s presence in the low post was a constant throughout the game for the Falcons. Lower Dauphin’s lone senior scored six of his points during the final eight minutes and grabbed six rebounds.
“When he got the ball they didn’t really have much of an answer for him physically,” Falcons coach Mark Hofsass said of Miller. “We tried to use that to our advantage.”
The 15-point deficit wasn’t the first big hole the Falcons had to climb out of. Lower Dauphin stormed out to an 18-2 lead in the first quarter behind Miller, Rutledge and Ryan Naccarato, who finished with nine eight points, nine rebounds and four assists.
Mechanicsburg used three of deep 3s from Farnham as part of a 15-2 run that spanned two quarters and cut the Falcons lead to just three, but Lower Dauphin scored the finals six points of the half and led by nine at the break.
Mechanicsburg reeled in 15 offensive rebounds, led by eight from Drew Schankweiler and four from Zach Brunner, who finished with nine points and 11 rebounds.
The Falcons shot 17-for-28 from the florr (61 percent) and 23-for-36 from the free-throw line. Mechanicsburg shot 18-for-54 and just 4-for-17 from 3.
“Every time they needed a shot, they hit a shot,” Strickler said. “They made free throws, we missed some critical free throws. That’s a very good basketball team and they deserve to be in the district playoffs. I would like to say we deserve it too, but we haven’t gotten quite enough wins.”
FALCONS 60, WILDCATS 51
Lower Dauphin 18 8 14 20 —- 60
Mechanicsburg 10 9 6 26 —- 51
LOWER DAUPHIN (60) —- Jack Miller 8 2-8 18, Kaylor Kulina 4 4-4 14, Ryan Naccarato 1 5-6 8, Tyler Roman 0 0-0 0, Luke Rutlege 4 5-6 13, Colton Nagy 0 4-8 4, Matt Seip 0 3-4 3, Tommy Bowen 0 0-0 0. Totals: 17 23-36 60.
MECHANICSBURG (51) —- Zach Brunner 4 1-4 9, Josh Smith 5 3-6 13, Collin Farmham 6 4-4 22, Breon Coke 0 0-0 0, Reed Alioth 2 0-0 4, Evan Brosious 0 1-3 1, Parker Beatty 0 0-0 0, Drew Schankweiler 1 0-0 2, Jeff Montgomery 0 0-0 0. Totals: 18 9-17 51.
3-point goals —- Lower Dauphin 4 (Kaylor Kulina 2, Ryan Naccarato 1, Luke Rutlege 1), Mechanicsburg 4 (Collin Farmham 4).
Article by Jeffrey Kauffman, The Sentinel
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With both teams coming off losses and returning to the court less than 18 hours later, this game would be determined by the team that found that simply made the plays. Mechanicsburg did just that, jumped out early and never let up, taking a 62-46 victory over Cedar Cliff in a Mid-Penn Keystone Division matchup at Highland Park Saturday afternoon.
“We got a big spark and a lot of energy from Collin Farnham, who didn’t play last night against Susquehanna Township,” Wildcats guard Josh Smith said. “We fed off that energy and we were able to move the ball around to get good shots and knocked them down. I turned the ball over way too many times last night, so I wanted to concentrate on handling the ball and involving my teammates.”
Farnham, who sat out last evening to rest an injury, came up huge with five 3-pointers and 18 total points to lead the Wildcats. He sat out a large chunk of the second quarter with three fouls and helped with the final quarter spread offense where the Wildcats looked to kill the clock.
Early in the first quarter, Cedar Cliff (8-13, 3-12 Keystone) tied the game at five on a bucket by Zac Galic and a foul shot by Nick Barowski. Moments later, Mechanicsburg’s Zach Brunner scored in the paint and Smith drained a 3 from the left wing. From there, the Colts never got closer than three points the rest of the contest.
Brunner and Schankweiler controlled the paint and the boards as they totaled 21 points and 17 rebounds against the smaller Colt team.
“I thought when we moved the ball around we got much better shots and we made them,” Wildcats coach Bob Strickler said. “Our seniors — Collin, Josh and Parker Beatty — just were not going to let us lose today. I am going to miss those guys because they are so close and know what I want on the court before I call anything. Some of these guys get very little publicity but do their job every night. Evan Brosious came in and hit a couple of shots, Parker comes and plays tough defense. There are a couple of kids on this team I wouldn’t trade for anybody. Josh is right there as a guard and he makes us so much better when he is able to hit a couple of shots. There are very few teams who can keep him out of the lane.”
The Wildcats were able to maintain a double-digit lead throughout the second half, thanks to a 6-0 run which extend the lead to 41-28 in the third quarter.
Another seven-point run keyed by a Farnham 3 and two buckets by Brunner early in the fourth period allowed the Wildcats (10-10, 6-9 Keystone) to spread the floor and get to the foul line — where their final seven points came from.
Galic led the Colts with 11 points before he fouled out in the final quarter. Tyler Hoagland hit three triples for nine points while Quintin Gause and Derek Ford had seven and six respectively.
Smith just missed a double-double for Mechanicsburg with 11 points and nine assists. Brunner had 13 points and nine rebounds. Schankweiler had eight and Brosious added seven points.
WILDCATS 62, COLTS 46
Mechanicsburg 14 19 13 16 — 62
Cedar Cliff 8 18 10 10 — 46
Mechanicsburg (62) — Zach Brunner 6 1-4 13; Collin Farnham 5 3-6 18; Drew Schankweiler 4 0-1 8; Josh Smith 5 0-0 11; Reed Alioth 1 0-0 2; Parker Beatty 0 2-2 2; Bradley Powell 0 1-2 1; Evan Brosious 2 2-3 7; Connor Lewis 0 0-0 0; Breon Coke 0 0-0 0; Kaden Knepper 0 0-0 0. Totals: 23 9-18 62.
Cedar Cliff (46) — Zac Galic 5 1-2 11; Derek Ford 2 1-4 6; Quintin Gause 3 1-3 7; Tyler Hoagland 3 0-0 9; Matt Lebo 0 0-0 0; Nick Barowski 1 1-2 4; Mike Viti 2 1-2 5; Kyler Smith 1 0-0 2; Luke Dugan 1 0-0 2; Ellis Wazeter 0 0-0 0; Deandre Murray 0 0-0 0. Totals: 18 5-13 46.
3–point goals: Mechanicsburg 7 (Farnham 5, Smith, Brosious) Cedar Cliff 5 (Hoagland 3, Ford, Barowski).
Article by Bill Landis, The Sentinel
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With his team desperate for a jolt, Bishop McDevitt’s Caleb Barwin got hot at just the right time in Wednesday’s Mid-Penn Keystone game against Mechanicsburg.
Down seven at the start of the fourth quarter, Mechanicsburg staged its biggest run of the game to tie it with just under six minutes to go. Barwin, who hadn’t made a shot since the 4:15 mark of the first quarter, found himself alone in the corner on an inbounds play and nailed a 3-pointer which helped spark a 9-0 run for the Crusaders and seal up a 57-47 win at Mechanicsburg Area Senior High School.
On the next trip down the floor, Barwin got himself some space with a shot fake and hit another 3, his fourth of the game en route to 12 points on 4-for-7 shooting from the beyond the arc. Justin McCarthur put the final nail in with a transition 3 which gave the Crusaders a nine-point lead.
“It was the three straight 3s that broke our back,” Mechanicsburg coach Bob Strickler said. “We didn’t find Barwin out of bounds, we didn’t find him in transition. We just didn’t react.”
It also didn’t help that Mechanicsburg (9-9, 5-8) picked the worst possible time to have its longest cold streak of the game. After back-to-back buckets from Josh Smith tied the game at 45 with 5:49 to go, the Wildcats didn’t score again until the Crusaders had stretched their lead to 11 with 30 seconds left.
McCarthur led all players with 18 points and had four assists, and Dyllon Hudson-Emory finished with 12 points, seven rebounds and three steals for McDevitt (12-6, 8-6), but the Crusaders’ spark was sophomore guard Milik Gantz.
Ganzt had 13 points, five rebounds, four assists and three steals before exiting early in the fourth quarter after getting hit in the face on a rebound attempt.
“Everybody else stepped up,” Crusaders coach Jeff Hoke said. “Jordan Moseby did and excellent job playing defense, Donte Vaughn helped keep them out of the paint. (Gantz) was playing well. I don’t think many teams have an answer for him when he’s playing like that.”
The defensive play of Moseby and Vaughn helped the Crusaders take away the interior game that Mechanicsburg thrived on in the first three quarters. Forwards Zach Brunner (12 points, nine rebounds) and Drew Schankweiler (eight points, four rebounds) worked the interior for most of the game, but both were held scoreless in the fourth quarter.
Collin Farnham, who led Mechanicsburg with 13 points on 4-for-9 shooting from 3-point range, was limited to just a free throw in the final quarter.
“We were toe-to-toe, right there with them,” Strickler said. “They just got us out of what we wanted to do. Scoring doesn’t always come easy for us. We don’t have four or five guys who can score it like they do.”
Mechanicsburg led four times Wednesday night, but never by more than four points. Runs by McDevitt at the end of each quarter put the Crusaders in front at the end of every frame, but Mechanicsburg managed to keep pace until the string of three consecutive 3s in the span of a minute gave McDevitt the cushion it needed.
“We were down seven and we got it back to tied, that’s where we’ve got to be able to push through, settle it down and execute,” Strickler said. “That’s what playoff teams do this time of year.”
It was the kind of performance the Wildcats were looking to avoid down the stretch. Wednesday’s game was the first of five in eight days, a crucial stretch when considering Mechanicsburg came into the game holding onto the final spot in the District 3-AAAA power ratings.
Over the final four games, Mechanicsburg plays at least two playoff-bound teams in Susquehanna Township and Chambersburg, and another fighting for its postseason life in Lower Dauphin.
Wednesday’s loss doesn’t write the Wildcats off, but the road just got a little tougher.
“We still control our destiny,” Strickler said. “We have four games left, we probably have to get minimum three. At 12-10 I’ll take our chances with the schedule we’ve played. We need three wins and we know what the task is.”