Korba and Hanover Area hold off Nanticoke Area field hockey team

By Paul Sokoloski - [email protected]
Hanover Area’s Kailey Wilson, left, fight to keep the ball from Nanticoke Area’s Mackenzie Casey at West Side Park in Nanticoke. - Sean McKeag | For Times Leader
Hanover Area’s Melissa O’Brien passes the ball during a field hockey game against Nanticoke Area at West Side Park in Nanticoke. - Sean McKeag | For Times Leader
Hanover Area’s Kelsey Henahan, left, fights for the ball with Nanticoke Area’s Josie Park at West Side Park in Nanticoke. - Sean McKeag | For Times Leader

NANTICOKE — After making it to states as a track and field standout, Abby Korba is developing a reputation as a pretty good jumper.

So it shouldn’t be shocking to see her jumping back and forth on the field hockey pitch.

Korba scored what proved to be the decisive goal early Tuesday, then made a couple key steals on defense late as Hanover Area began a grueling stretch run toward the finish of the Wyoming Valley Conference field hockey season by holding off Nanticoke Area, 2-1 at West Side Park.

“I’m a midfielder, so I play offense and defense,” Korba, a junior, said. “You have to be able to switch and do both.”

Korba did it as well as anyone Tuesday.

Her unassisted shot from inside the circle gave the Hawkeyes their final goal, and a 2-0 lead, with 5:39 to play in the opening half.

“Just got to score,” Korba said. “You’ve got to be steady and go to the cage. The ball has to go in if you want to win.”

Much later, she helped secure victory for Hanover Area.

After Nanticoke Area closed the gap to a goal, Korba made a nifty steal and poked away a pass as the Trojanettes tried desperately to rally for the tying goal in Hanover Area’s end over the game’s final few minutes.

“She is an amazing athlete, number one,” Hanover Area coach Jocelyn Holodick-Reed said. “Her stick skills have improved so much this year. Her skill set has improved greatly. Abbie’s been pretty consistent with us in front of the goal. We always look to her and Sara Whitesell.”

And to think field hockey isn’t even Korba’s main sport.

That would be track and field, where Korba won a District 2 Class 2A gold medal in the triple jump and district silver in the long jump before finishing her season with a 17th-place finish among 30 competitors in the PIAA triple.

“I do this to stay in shape,” Korba said of field hockey. “My (track) coaches want me to run cross country, but I started playing (field hockey) in seventh grade. I feel like (Holodick-Reed) gets me in just as much shape, or better.”

The Hawkeyes will need some endurance at crunch time.

They’re currently 4-4-1, seemingly solid in fifth place in the eight-team District 2 Class A playoff race and chasing 6-0 Northwest for the WVC Division 2 title. But Hanover Area has a bunch of makeup games forced by earlier rainouts that promise a grueling finish to the Hawkeyes’ regular season.

“We could have seven games in a row,” Holodick-Reed said. “That can put a lot of wear and tear on the body. We’ll try to stay as healthy as possible. Our motto is, we’re trying to play smarter, not harder.”

The Hawkeyes played themselves into position for victory when Rhiannon Danko scored off a feed from Gioan Hemsley less than 10 minutes in, then upped the score to 2-0 on Korba’s goal 5:39 from halftime.

“It brings us up, makes us want to win the rest of our games,” Korba said. “We have games all week, because of the (earlier) rain. We don’t want to lose.”

Meanwhile, the loss dropped Nanticoke Area to 6-6-1 overall, despite a second-half rally behind Mackenzie Casey’s goal that gave the Trojanettes a chance with 12:14 to play.

Nanticoke Area wasn’t hurt much by the defeat in the WVC Division 2 standings, where it sits in the middle of the pack at 4-4-1, but it could damage the District 2 Class A playoff hopes of the Trojanettes down the road.

Nanticoke Area currently sits percentage points ahead of Holy Redeemer for the eighth and final district playoff seed, and percentage points behind seventh-place Berwick — a coveted spot that would allow that seed to avoid facing unbeating and defending District 2 champ Wyoming Seminary in the first round.

Meanwhile, the victory allowed Holodick-Reed to gloat a bit at the dinner table.

“It’s a personal victory because my daughter plays for Nanticoke,” Holodick-Reed said of Grace Reed, who is in eighth grade and not yet at the varsity level, but plays for the Trojanettes’ junior high team. “I know most of these girls, they’re her friends. So it’s bittersweet.”

Wyoming Seminary 10, Crestwood 0

Hannah Maxwell scored four goals, Julia Christian and Alex Wesneski added two apiece and the Blue Knights recovered from their first two losses of the season by crushing the Comets.

Elisabeth Seyfarth dished out two assists as Sem built a 7-0 lead by intermission and Christian assisted on all three goals of the second half as the Blue Knights improved to 10-0 at the top of the WVC Division 1 with three games remaining in the regular season.

Sem improved to 12-2 overall after dropping non-conference weekend games to national powers Eastern, 3-2 and to Sacred Heart (Kentucky), 1-0 and remained percentage points ahead of Wyoming Area in the District 2 Class A rankings.

Aubrey Mytych finished with a goal and two assists in Tuesday’s victory and Bari Lefkowitz started the scoring 3:04 in.

Olivia Novrocki made eight saves in goal for the Comets.

Valley West 5, Abington Heights 0

Cameryn Forgash had a hat trick, Karaline Stelma scored twice in the first half and the Spartans shut down the Comets.

Forgash hit the first two goals of the game and added the only score of the second half, while Valley West’s defense kept Abington Heights to one shot.

Makenna Thorpe made 13 saves for the Comets.

Honesdale 2, Holy Redeemer 0

Chloe Fox and Brooke Gardas scored goals 42 seconds apart in the first half and the Hornets shut down the Royals.

Nicole Miszler made five saves to preserve Honesdale’s shutout. Meredythe Baird made nine saves for Holy Redeemer.

Hazleton Area 4, Pittston Area 0

Taylor Buchman scored twice in the second half and Jill Buchman dished out three assists as the Cougars broke a halftime tie by erupting for four scores over the final 21 minutes.

Jenna Corra recorded the shutout by making four saves.

Sage Weidlich made 16 stops for the Patriots.

GAR 6, Tunkhannock 1

Jordyn Catina hit a hat trick, Erin Leonard scored twice and the Grenadiers won their first game of the season.

Leonard opened the scoring with a goal 64 seconds in and polished off the victory with 2:46 remaining.

Catina had all three of her goals over a 40-minute stretch of the first and second halves to extend GAR’s lead to 4-1.

Erica O’Hara’s goal in the first half pulled the Tigers within 2-1.

Coughlin 6, Wallenpaupack 3

The Crusaders were carried by Jolene Ulichney who scored four goals and added an assist in the dominant performance. Abie Sorokas also scored twice for Coughlin in the win over Wallenpaupack.

Hanover Area 2, Nanticoke Area 1

Hanover Area`2`0 — 2

Nanticoke Area`0`1 — 1

First half — 1. HAN, Rhiannon Danko (Gina Hemsley), 20:45; 2. HAN, Abby Korba, 5:39. Second half — 3. NAN, Mackenzie Casey, 12:14.

Shots — HAN 13; NAN 6. Saves — HAN 5 (Alyssa Wivell); NAN 11 (Jill Maute). Penalty corners — HAN 5; NAN 3.

Wyoming Sem 10, Crestwood 0

Crestwood`0`0 — 0

Wyoming Sem`7`3 — 10

First half — 1. SEM, Bari Lefkowitz (Elisabeth Seyfarth), 26:56; 2. SEM, Hannah Maxwell (Aubrey Mytych), 24:53; 3. SEM, Maxwell (Seyfarth), 13:56; 4. SEM, Julia Christian (Wesneski), 11:00; 5. SEM, Christian (Kelsey Reznick), 6:50; 6. SEM, Aubrey Mytych, 3:35; 7. SEM, Wesneski (Mytych), 1:40. Second half — 8. SEM, Maxwell (Julia Christian), 27:32; 9. SEM, Wesneski (Christian), 9:52; 10. SEM, Maxwell (Christian), 5:00.

TEAM, Scorer (assist), time.

Shots — CRE 2; SEM 18. Saves — CRE 8 (Olivia Novrocki); SEM 2 (Mia Magnotta 0, Grace Aiello 2). Penalty corners — CRE 1; SEM 6.

Wyoming Valley West 5, Abington Heights 0

Abington Heights`0`0 — 0

Wyoming Valley West`4`1 — 5

First half — 1. WVW, Cameryn Forgash (Emily Latoski), 24:52; 2. WVW, Forgash, 21:33; 3. WVW, Karaline Stelma, 9:48; 4. WVW, Stelma (Rina Tsioles), 0:22. Second half — 5. WVW, Forgash (Alexis Dubois), 28:54.

Shots — AH 1; WVW 18. Saves — AH 13 (Makenna Thorpe); WVW 1 (Sydney Rusnock). Penalty Corners — AH 2; WVW 11.

Honesdale 2, Holy Redeemer 0

Honesdale`2`0 — 0

Holy Redeemer`0`0 — 0

First half — 1. HON, Chloe Fox (Chloe Nicolini), 7:26; 2. HON, Brooke Gardas, 6:44.

Shots — HON 11; HR 5. Saves — HON 5 (Nicole Miszler); HR 9 (Meredythe Baird). Penalty corners — HON 6; HR 6.

Hazleton Area 4, Pittston Area 0

Hazleton Area`0`4 — 4

Pittston Area`0`0 — 0

Second half — 1. HAZ, Taylor Buchman (Jill Buchman), 20:35; 2. HAZ, Gabrielle Cavenas (Jill Buchman), 13:04; 3. HAZ, Taylor Buchman (Jill Buchman), 12:42; 4. HAZ, Mia Dremock (Kaitlyn Diehl), 1:04.

Shots — HAZ 20; PA 4. Saves — HAZ 4 (Jenna Corra); PA 16 (Sage Weidlich). Penalty corners — HAZ 6; PA 2.

GAR 6, Tunkhannock 1

Tunkhannock`1`0 — 1

GAR`2`4 — 6

First half — 1. GAR, Erin Leonard, 28:56; 2. GAR, Jordyn Catina (Leonard), 20:33; 3. TUN, Erica O’Hara, 12:38. Second half — 4. GAR, Catina (Selena Evertz), 21:59; 5. GAR, Catina (Leonard), 9:44; 6. GAR, Evertz (Nina Germeno), 3:43; 7. GAR, Leonard (Catina), 2:46.

Shots — TUNK 3; GAR 12. Saves — TUNK 6 (Iesha Hartman); GAR 2 (Reilly Holden). Penalty Corners — TUNK 3; GAR 15.

Coughlin 6, Wallenpaupack 3

Wallenpaupack`1`2 —3

Coughlin`2`4 —6

First half — 1. COU, Jolene Ulichney, 23:15; 2. COU, Ulichney, 15:27; 3. WAL, Madison Schmalzle (Hannah Karp), 7:06. Second half — 4. COU, Ulichney, 23:51; 5. WAL, Kayla Schmazle (Kylie Ferro), 19:03; 6. COU, Abie Sorokas (Ulichney), 17:32; 7. COU, Ulichney, 11:08; 8, WAL, Abbie McHugh, 3:56; 9. COU, Sorokas (Raven Bozek), 2:15.

Shots — WAL 5; COU 12. Saves — WAL 5 (Madison Kier); COU 3 (Emily Buraczewski). Penalty Corners — WAL 8; COU 3.

Hanover Area’s Kailey Wilson, left, fight to keep the ball from Nanticoke Area’s Mackenzie Casey at West Side Park in Nanticoke.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/web1_TTL101018HanNanticokeFH1.jpgHanover Area’s Kailey Wilson, left, fight to keep the ball from Nanticoke Area’s Mackenzie Casey at West Side Park in Nanticoke. Sean McKeag | For Times Leader

Hanover Area’s Melissa O’Brien passes the ball during a field hockey game against Nanticoke Area at West Side Park in Nanticoke.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/web1_TTL101018HanNanticokeFH2.jpgHanover Area’s Melissa O’Brien passes the ball during a field hockey game against Nanticoke Area at West Side Park in Nanticoke. Sean McKeag | For Times Leader

Hanover Area’s Kelsey Henahan, left, fights for the ball with Nanticoke Area’s Josie Park at West Side Park in Nanticoke.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/web1_TTL101018HanNanticokeFH3.jpgHanover Area’s Kelsey Henahan, left, fights for the ball with Nanticoke Area’s Josie Park at West Side Park in Nanticoke. Sean McKeag | For Times Leader

By Paul Sokoloski

[email protected]

Reach Paul Sokoloski at 570-991-6392 or on Twitter @TLPaulSokoloski

Reach Paul Sokoloski at 570-991-6392 or on Twitter @TLPaulSokoloski