Enthusiasm gets curbed by frustration.
A promising start is wiped out by an 18-point run by the opponent.
Final score – Pittston Area 56, Berwick 36.
Inconsistent. We're just inconsistent at times, said Jason Kingery, Berwick's second-year coach who is trying to make a winner out of one of the Wyoming Valley Conference's worst programs.
First a little background. Prior to Kingery taking over last season, Berwick had four head coaches in three seasons. One of them included then-football coach Gary Campbell, who was pressed into action when the coach abruptly left.
The results were ugly. Berwick was blown out on a regular basis and 5-64 during those three seasons.
Maybe that's why Kingery took away some positives from Saturday's 20-point loss.
Last year, that would have been a 40-point game, Kingery said. Things are getting better. The community is behind it and the administration is behind it. That's what matters.
Berwick was 3-19 in Kingery's first season and 4-13 thus far. Two more victories and the Dawgs' will tie their most wins since 2007-08. There has also been a three-game winning streak, something Kingery has been told hasn't happened since 1985-86. (One source, though, shows the Dawgs winning four in a row in 2006-07).
It's small steps, Kingery said. Last year, we didn't play with anyone. This year, we're not going to finish at the bottom. I can see us winning a couple more. Every year, you have to gradually build on what you've done in previous years. We got great junior high teams coming through the system. I can see us being competitive with the top teams in the next couple years.
There are two blueprints available to construct the program.
Kingery provided one from his last school – Scott High in Madison, W. Va. He turned around the program, coaching the team to its first state playoff appearance in 66 years. He also coached a high school team in North Carolina that had lost 66 in a row, so he understands how difficult things can be.
The other is right at Berwick – the girls program.
Berwick's girls were losing game by 70 points on a regular basis when Vince Trivelpiece took over for the 1990-91 season. I remember Trivelpiece telling me he lined up the girls for layups at the first practice. A half hour later, he claimed, someone made one.
But through hard work and creativity – some of latter parallels what Kingery is doing – the Berwick girls were playing for a state championship eight seasons later.
This isn't to say the Berwick boys will be heading to the Giant Center in Hershey any time soon. But I remember another thing Trivelpiece told me back then when I was covering girls basketball.
I will make you come to Berwick, he said, meaning the team would be playing meaningful Wyoming Valley Conference games late in the season.
Now it's the boys turn to make me do the same.
There will be a District 2 Class 4A championship game … maybe.
The game will take place only if District 4's Williamsport wins the D2/4-4A subregional tournament. The District 2 teams that lost to Williamsport in the subregional semifinals and championship game would play Saturday, March 2, to decide the title.
This wasn't possible in the recent past because the D2/4-4A runner-up would have a state play-in game with the District 1 ninth seed. The PIAA eliminated state play-in games in all classes starting this season.
Because of that play-in game, the District 2 team that lost to Williamsport in the subregional would be the D2 champion, like Delaware Valley was last season.
If there is a D2-4A title game, that would be the end of the season for both teams.
GAR nearly reached the century Tuesday in its 98-64 victory over Lake-Lehman. As best as we can tell, GAR was the last team to score at least 100 in a win on Jan. 15, 2001.
The Grenadiers defeated Coughlin 104-72 that day, with Tom Dohman and Chris Shovlin scoring 26 points each and Kevin Brown adding 22. Strangely, GAR trailed 16-15 after one quarter.
Holy Redeemer has won five of its last seven games after starting the season 1-9, and is getting a boost from its big guys – 6-foot-7 Mike Prociak and 6-3 Brian Banas.
Through the first four games of the WVC season, Prociak was averaging 1.5 points and Banas 7.2. In the last four WVC games, Prociak is tossing in 9.5 and Banas 11.8.
The Royals have just one senior on the roster and will return their entire starting lineup next season, so gaining some momentum down the stretch is critical. It probably won't come tonight against Meyers, though.
The highest scoring game in state history, according to pahoops.org, was on Feb. 3, 1998, between two Philadelphia city schools. Washington defeated West Philadelphia 130-127 in four overtimes.
The highest scoring game between area teams, once again based on pahoops.org, came on Feb. 27, 1970, when Delaware Valley defeated Honesdale 125-110.
The most points by a Pennsylvania team in a game came in 1971 when Albert Gallatin defeated West Greene High School 167-30.
Tonight's games are designated as the Coaches vs. Cancer fundraisers. Other games through the remainder of the season could also be Coaches vs. Cancer games.
We'll know who's in the District 2 playoffs in 10 days.
Any team deciding not to participate in the open tournaments will send an email to District 2 chairman Frank Majikes by that time.