North Pocono girls reflect on a solid hoops season

Finishing the year with a 15-8 record, North Pocono's girls varsity basketball squad earned a seventh seed and pitted them against second place Crestwood in the District II 5A playoffs.

Although the Trojan ladies put up a valiant effort, the Comets wound up being a bit too much for them to handle when they took to the court in the opening round on Feb. 21.

Comet Strike

Equally inconvenient for all parties, North Pocono and Crestwood squared off in Berwick.

Still suffering the effects of a concussion received in the game against Western Wayne, the Trojan lasses went to work without their top scorer, senior Sarah Kaneski.

NP got out to an 8-7 lead in the first quarter but was outshot 8-6 in the second stanza. At intermission, the girls from Mountaintop were up by just a single point, 15-14.

The Comets jumped out to a 29-21 lead in the third quarter. And, although the Trojans rallied in the final frame, netting 13 while allowing only 11, it wouldn’t be enough to close the chasm.

With no time left, North Pocono fell short by six and was forced to end their year with a 40-34 loss.

“I thought our girls put up a solid effort,” said Head Coach Corey Valvano, wrapping up his second stint at the Lady Trojans helm.

“Carena Colo really stepped up. We'll be seeing a lot more from her in the next few years.”

Colo, a freshman, put up nine points, including a tree versus Crestwood while juniors Izzy Pehanick and Brianna Ruby each tossed in eight.

By the Numbers

The Trojan ladies were a young squad.

While Kaneski led the season with 194, going 63-for-99 on free throws and sending 65 through the hoop from the field, underclassmen carried the team.

Pehanick tallied 67 2-pointers and went 21-30 from the stripe for a sum of 155.

Sophomore Jenna Montanta dazzled from downtown with 37 treys and hit 11-of-18 from the line for a total of 150.

Colo saw significant time on the court and made 12 threes, 31 twos, and hit for 17-of-35 foul shots.

Lila Gaughan, a sophomore, put in a pair of 3-pointers among her 43 field goals and went 22-for-33 at the foul line.

Wrapping up those who broke 100, Ruby went 25-for-39 on free throws and made 39 from the field, including a quartet from beyond the arc.

“With Sarah out at the end of the season, we kind of saw a preview of what next year will look like,” Valvano said.

Up Ahead

“I’m excited for next season,” Valvano said.

“We’re bringing back a lot of girls. We fell short of some of our expectations this year. Weather played a part of it. We played a lot of games without a practice before but still managed pull off some good wins.”

The Lady Trojans will take a few weeks off. However, Coach Valvano hopes to have them back for some conditioning in May before they get ready for some summer league action and an off-season tournament in Allentown.

“We'll lay off a few weeks before school starts and allow the fall athletes time to get ready for their sports, but before you know it, it will be November and another season will be here,” he said.