Sunday, November 28, 2010

North Penn football coach Dick Beck talks after district semifinal victory

Reporter staff writer Kev Hunter took video of North Penn football coach Dick Beck talking to reporters following the Knights' 28-14 victory over Council Rock South in the District One Class AAAA semifinals last Friday at Council Rock North.

The win sends North Penn to its third consecutive district final and seventh in nine seasons under Beck. The Knights have won four District One titles since 2002, the most recent coming in 2008.

North Penn (12-1) goes for a fifth title 7:30 p.m. Friday back at Council Rock North against Neshaminy (12-1). The game is a rubber match of sorts between the two programs in terms of meetings in district finals. The Redskins downed the Knights 51-34 in 2004, while North Penn shut out Neshaminy 28-0 in '08.

Number Crunching

  • Last Friday's district semifinal was the first road playoff game from North Penn since it lost to Neshaminy in the 2007 district quarters, with the Knights playing eight home contest and three neutral site contests ('08 district final at William Tennent, '08 state semis and '09 district final at Coatesville). Five of North Penn's home games have been at Crawford Stadium, two at Souderton ('09 first round and quarters) at one at Central Bucks West's War Memorial Field (2008 quarters).
  • Since 2000, five teams have won the District One Class AAAA title. North Penn leads with four championships ('02, '03, '05, '08). Neshaminy ('01, '04) and Ridley ('07, '09), the only non-Suburban One League winner each have two, while Central Bucks West won in 2000 and Pennsbury claimed the crown in '06.
  • With the win over Council Rock South, North Penn has won 27 straight games against fellow Suburban One League teams, the Knights' last loss coming to Neshaminy in the '07 districts.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Cabrey: Top Five Spectrum Moments

After 43 years of hockey, basketball, lacrosse, indoor soccer, concerts, and whatever else can be held inside of an arena, the Spectrum will sadly be no more. The former home of the Flyers and Sixers is finally meeting the wrecking ball today, making room for the Philly Live! (their exclamation point, not mine) complex.

For me personally, my top Spectrum moment was watching Kerry Kittles and Villanova beat North Carolina 76-56 on Jan. 20, 1996, earning the Wildcats a second win over the Tar Heels that season. That, however, did not crack what I feel were the five best moments ever to take place at America's Showplace.

5) Flyers beat up, then just beat the Red Army
The Cold War was certainly hot on Jan. 11, 1976 as the two-time defending Stanley Cup champ Flyers hosted Central Red Army (CSKA Moscow) in the Soviet powerhouse's final contest in a exhibition tour against NHL sides.

After an Ed Van Impe hit on Valeri Kharlamov, Red Army coach Konstantin Loktev pulled his team off the ice. Eventually, they returned only for the Flyers to score quickly after en route to a 4-1 victory.

4) The Doctor rocks the baby against the Lakers
Though the Sixers would win the 1983 NBA title with a sweep of the Los Angeles Lakers in the Finals, this iconic dunk did not happen then, but rather earlier that year in a 122-120 Sixers' victory over LA on Jan. 5.

3) Daigneault sends it back to Edmonton
On May 28, 1987, with the Flyers facing Edmonton in a must-win Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final, J.J. Daigneault picked a perfect time to earn his first and only point of the postseason. Just 84 seconds after Brian Propp tied the game at two, Daigneault let go a shot from the blue line that beat Oilers goalie Grant Fuhr and kept the Flyers alive with a 3-2 win.

2) The Shot ends a NCAA Tournament Classic
The East Regional Final between Duke and Kentucky on March 28, 1992 was a classic contest before the final 2.1 seconds of overtime. What happened after made it epic, as Christian Laettner drained a jumper from the foul line to give the Blue Devils a 103-102 victory. Laettner was perfect on the night, shooting 10-for-10 from the field, 10-for-10 from the line for 31 points.

1) Flyers hoist the Cup for the first time
Seven seasons after coming into the NHL, the Flyers reached the league's mountaintop for the first time on May 19, 1974 when Rick MacLeish's goal gave Philadelphia a 1-0 victory over Boston in Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Finals.

Contact Mike Cabrey at or at Twitter @mcabrey.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Poeske, Hensel comment on CB West football's loss in district quarters

The Central Bucks West football team's first winning season since 2006 came to end last Friday night at Walt Snyder Stadium in Newtown, as the Bucks could not keep up with Council Rock South and fell in the District One Class AAAA quarterfinals 52-41.

Our first video is West junior running back Jake Poeske talking postgame about the loss to the Golden Hawks

The next video is Central Bucks West coach Brian Hensel also commenting on the game. The Bucks finished 9-3 in Hensel's second season, an eight-game improvement from 2009

Saturday, November 20, 2010

H.S. FOOTBALL: North Penn advances; CB West done

Kev Hunter: North Penn routs Downingtown East here.

Mike Cabrey: CB West falls to Council Rock South here.

Christiaan DeFranco: Defense disappeared in CB West's defeat here.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Two big games tonight

The North Penn football team hosts Downingtown East, and CB West travels to play Council Rock South (at North) in the district quarterfinals tonight.

Check out Twitter @reportersports and @phillyscores for live updates. Christiaan DeFranco and Mike Cabrey will be at the Central Bucks West game, while Kev Hunter will be at North Penn along with the Times Herald, one of The Reporter's sister papers.

Also be sure to check late tonight for coverage, if you can't wait until tomorrow's newsstand edition. And look for follow-up coverage in print and online the coming days.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Algeo, Pinzka talk after LC's loss to Plymouth Whitemarsh

It was an offensive slugfest for two quarters Friday night between Lansdale Catholic and Plymouth Whitemarsh. The two sides racked up 49 points in the opening half, with a late Andrew Mandato touchdown pass to Matt Pinzka pulling the visiting Crusaders to within 28-21 at intermission.

But is was PW's attack that stated hot in the second half, scoring 21 straight points to earn a 49-27 victory and give coach Dan Chang - a former North Penn assistant - a winning record in his first year with the Colonials at 6-5.

After the game, LC coach Jim Algeo talked about his team's third-straight loss and also some thoughts about him being on the sidelines next year.

Lansdale Catholic senior Matt Pinzka was the Crusaders' top receiver this season, but had yet to score a touchdown. He made sure to rectify that by finding the end zone twice against the Colonials. Here is Pinzka talking after the game, including thoughts on his first score.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

College Basketball is back

I know March is a little ways away, but this video got my pumped about college basketball getting started.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

LC girls soccer coach Tom O'Donnell on PIAA Tournament loss

The Lansdale Catholic girls soccer team made its first ever appearance in the state playoffs Tuesday and unfortunately for the Crusaders it was a short stay, as they fell to Villa Maria 1-0 in the first overtime at West Chester East.

LC coach Tom O'Donnell talked after the game about Villa Maria's game-winner along with the Crusaders season in total, which included LC reaching the Philadelphia Catholic League final a second-straight season and also winning the District 12 Class AA title.

The area's two Class AAA schools that made states, Pennridge and Central Bucks West, kept their season alive with first-round victories Tuesday night.

District One runner-up Pennridge edged the Unionville, the fifth-place side from District One, 1-0 at Harriton. The Bucks, who are the third seed from District One, headed up the Northeast Extension to Memorial Stadium in Scranton and bested Distict Two champ Abington Heights 1-0.

The Class AAA quarterfinal round is Satuday with CB West facing District One sixth seed Conestoga, which upset District One champ Council Rock South 1-0. Pennridge takes on PCL and District 12 champ Archbishop Wood, as the Vikings topped District One fourth seed West Chester East 2-1.

GIRLS SOCCER: West's 'predatory' scoring frenzy

By Christiaan DeFranco

Although the Central Bucks West defense shut down the Abington Heights Lady Comets in Tuesday's opening round of the Class 3A state playoffs, Abington Heights found the Lady Bucks' offense nearly as frustrating as their 'D' — in particular, the fact that they scored the game's only goal in a scrum in front of the net, in this case off a corner kick.

"I knew that was how they scored a lot of their goals," Abington Heights coach E.T. Hunter said. "I went to watch them play against West Chester East (in the District 1 third-place game), and that's how they scored in that game. So we prepared for that, but they were still able to score.

"They're almost predatory the way they attack the ball in that situation," Hunter said. "It's really something to see."

West's Elena Ochsenreither used a header to score off Erin McQuate's corner kick. Comets keeper Melanie Coles got a hand on the ball before it got to Ochsenreither, but the Lady Bucks had done some preparation of their own.

"That's the way we practice it, with the goalie deflecting it, so it didn't really affect me," Ochsenreither said.

Although the Comets have won the District 2 title in four of the last five seasons, they have yet to win a state playoff game. However, Hunter's girls are clearly on the rise and they're likely to be right back at states next year.

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

DeFranco's Power Rankings

College Football
1. Oregon
2. Auburn
3. LSU
4. TCU
5. Boise State

1. Baltimore Ravens
2. Pittsburgh Steelers
3. New York Giants
4. New York Jets
5. Green Bay Packers

Add a comment to share your gripes, or e-mail assistant sports editor Christiaan DeFranco at

Monday, November 08, 2010

Wissahickon QB J.T. Crits

Wissahickon junior quarterback J.T. Crits discusses the loss to Cheltenham and the Trojans' rebuilding.

Saturday, November 06, 2010

H.S. FOOTBALL: Official Class-4A Playoff Seedings

Find them here.

H.S. FOOTBALL: Week 10 Local Scoreboard


Souderton 31
Quakertown 14

Pennridge 8 
North Penn 41

Hatboro-Horsham 20
CB West 42

Wissahickon 7
Cheltenham 35

Methacton 21
Boyertown 27

CB East 27 
CB South 38

Tennent 0
Abington 42

Pennsbury 14
Neshaminy 35

Upper Moreland 47
Lower Merion 8

CR North 25
CR South 27

Germantown Academy 7,
Malvern Prep 28

Truman 26 
Bensalem 31

Jenkintown 7 
New Hope 38

Class 4A PCL Playoffs  
Father Judge 7 
La Salle 34

Class 3A PCL Playoffs  
Carroll 7 
Wood 41

CB West coach Brian Hensel talks after Bucks top Hatboro-Horsham

Here is Central Bucks West coach Brian Hensel's postgame thoughts after the Bucks defeated Hatboro-Horsham 42-20 Friday night. West improved to 8-2 overall with the win as it heads into the District One Class AAAA playoffs for the first time since 2006.

Monday, November 01, 2010

Not surprised McNabb was benched

By Christiaan DeFranco

So, there he was, his team trailing with the game on the line, standing on the sideline with his helmet off, drinking some Gatorade.

Injured? No.

Donovan McNabb was benched.

Were you really surprised? If you were watching the game, you knew McNabb wasn't going to get it done in the final two minutes. And Washington Redskins coach Mike Shanahan knew it too. Although the national media may have been stunned, the truth is Shanahan has learned what most of us in Philadelphia have known for a decade:

McNabb isn't clutch.

Talented, yes. Pretty good quarterback with a good career, yes. But not clutch.

If you need a game-winning or game-tying drive, whether it's in the Super Bowl, the playoffs or during the regular season, you might want to go with someone else. Even if it's Rex Grossman.