Saturday, February 27, 2010

Semi-final/consi game predictions/schedule

Boys AAAA: In the semi-finals on Tuesday at Giant Center, take Reading over Wilson and feeling an upset as York High's athletes are beter and too much to handle for unbeaten Hempfield.
In consi games, Red Land over Penn Manor and Daniel Boone over Warwick.
Boys AAA: Monday at the Giant Center, two easy picks -- Eastern over East Pennsboro and Steel-High over Lancaster Catholic.
In consi games, I'll take West York over Susquehanna Township and Hershey over York Suburban.
Boys AA: Wednesday at Giant Center. Mennonite (assuming they beat Upper Dauphin on Monday) has a challenge against Delone Catholic. Not liking the L-L League here, so I see a Delone win and Trinity with ease over Hanover.
Boys A: Semi-finals are at Lower Dauphin on Monday. Reading Central Catholic over Millersburg and Greenwood over Lebanon Catholic.
Girls AAAA: Semi-finals are Monday and Tuesday ar Giant Center.
In one semi-final, go with Central Dauphin over Reading and in a toss-up Mechanicsburg over Harrisburg.
Consi round picks: Red Lion over Hershey and Governor Mifflin over CD East.
Girls AAA: Semi-finals are Wednesday at Giant Center. West York over Oley Valley and Trinity over Palmyra.
Consi round: Shippensburg over Oley Valley and Lancaster Catholic over Manheim Central.
Girls AA: Semi-finals are Monday at East Pennsboro.
Like York Catholic, who is going for a fourth straight trip to the state finals and not feeling the love for Mennonite over Delone Catholic, but I'll still take the L-L League team.
Girls A: The Rollers over Bible Baptist and Greenwood over Camp Hill. Semi-finals are Tuesday at Cedar Crest.

District Three scores/prediction results

All of the scores are in from Saturday's Day of Basketball Across District Three. There were some upsets.
Boys AAAA: Hempfield stays unbeaten with a 60-54 win over rival Penn Manor. The Black Knights now meet York at the Giant Center on Tuesday (8 p.m.). The Bearcats clawed their way to an upset of Red Land, 55-50. In the lower bracket, its a re-match of two teams from Berks County as Wilson meets Reading. Wilson crushed Warwick, 44-23, while Reading knighted Daniel Boone, 63-38. That game is Tuesday at 6:30 at the Giant Center.
Prediction Results: 3-1.
Boys AA: No surprises here. Mennonite and Upper Dauphin will play Monday. The winner meets Delone Catholic on Wednesday. The Squires were 58-50 winners over McDevitt. In the lower bracket, Trinity had a huge win over York Catholic, 63-38 and Hanoverm a public school earns a berth in the semi-finals with a 54-34 win over Annville-Cleona.
Prediction Results: 3-0, pending the results of Monday's game.
Boys A: Millersburg over Living Word, 61-39 and Greenwood over Camp Hill.
Prediction Results: 4-0 for entire bracket. Other two games were played last night.
Girls AAAA: Central Dauphin upsets Red Lion, 50-41 and Harrisburg wins over Mifflin, 67-55.
Prediction results for entire bracket (other two games were played last night): 3-1.
Girls AAA: West York over Daniel Boone, 48-36; Oley Valley over Shippensburg, 62-43;.Trinity over Manheim Central, 48-38 and Palnyra downs Lancaster Catholic, 56-48.
Prediction Results: 2-2.
Girls A: Steel-High over Central Catholic, 56-27; Bible Baptist over Country Day, 44-40; Camp Hill over Lebanon Catholic, 44-42 and Greenwood over Conestoga Christian, 64-25.
Prediction Results: 3-1.
Overall Boys: 32-9.
Overall Girls: 32-13
Overall Record: 64-22 (74 percent)

One step closer

Two Columbia wrestlers have moved one step closer to the ultimate prize in high school wrestling -- the chance to wrestle for a state championship.

One has been a career wrestler, the other has been wrestling for just two years. Meet Columbia's two regional qualifiers -- seniors Joey Ronca and Jake Sentz. They medaled at the two-day District Three Class AA championships at the old Hersheypark Arena. Sentz, the second year grappler placed third at 285 pounds to continue his season. Ronca, the career wrestler, settled for fourth place at 135 pounds.

There were seven Columbia wrestlers who made the trek to Chocolatetown and only one other wrestler, John Markley (130) made it to the second day of competition.

Sentz brings home the bronze medal following a pin in 2:28 over Tyler Unger of Boiling Springs in the third place bout. Sentz (27-16) started off  the championships on a positive note Friday morning, showing Malcolm White of Wyomissing the lights in 3:24, putting him into the quarter-finals against Milton Hershey's Chris Ramirez. It was a quick ending for the Columbia wrestler, who was pinned by the Spartan wrestler in just 13 seconds.
To keep his goal of reaching the regionals alive, Sentz had to work his way back through the consolation bracket. He started that remarkable run off by pinning Dakota Hoagland of Halifax in just 81 seconds. His next victim was Nic Aguliar of Biglerville and Sentz moved on with another fall in 2:58.
He was now in a position to medal and moved into the third place bout with a 9-6 win over Raul Leyva of Littlestown. The two had split their previous meetings at the Hanover Duals back in December and at last week's sectional tournament. The third time was a charm for Sentz.

Ronca settled for fourth place at 135 after falling for the second time in the championships to Tyler Thumma of Boiling Springs in the third place bout. Thumma scored a 14-3 major decision over Ronca.
While placing at districts was a highlight for the Tide senior, he also recorded a personal milestone in the opening round of the championships against Hamburg's Bryan Weidenhammer. A pin in 4:14 over the Hamburg wrestler was Ronca's 100th career win. It was also the third time this season that Ronca (36-8) had beaten Weidenhammer.
That put Ronca, the newest member of Columbia's century club, into his first match with Thumma. The Bubbler wrestler was at his best, scoring a pin in 3:44.
Now in the consolation bracket, Ronca had a tough first match against Robbie Moretz of Halifax, scoring a 5-4 win. Ronca continued his march toward the medal stand with a dominating 14-2 major decision over Sean Emerich of Kutztown and followed that with another major decision by a 12-2 score over Noah Blascone of Bermudian Springs.
That win set the stage for a rematch with Thumma, with third place on the line.

At 130 pounds, Markley fell short in his bid to get in the medal round when he lost to York Suburban's Kyle Arnold in the third round of consolations.
Markley opened the championships with a a second period pin over Kyle Christianson of Kutztown in 3:36, but was the victim of a tech fall in the quarter-finals to Joe Spisak of Boiling Springs, 16-0, in 2:41. Now in the consi round, Markley stayed alive for a match by pinning Annville-Cleona's Seth Lehman in 4:35.

The other Columbia wrestlers never made it to the second day.

At 119, Derek Zercher easily won his first round bout with Annville Cleona's Tim Renninger by a 13-6 score to advance to the quarter-finals. Zercher lasted 70 seconds in his next match in which he was pinned by Pete Renda of Boiling Springs and then was eliminated from the tournament when he lost a 13-9 decision to Wyomissing's Cody Rank.

At 140, Jordon Halter, who will probably be the next Columbia wrestler to reach the 100 win plateau lost a tough 6-5 decision in the opening round to Zeb Sheaman of Tulpehocken by a 6-5 score and then saw his sophomore season end when he was pinned by Sam Rhoads of Boiling Springs in 2:33.

At 160, sophomore Nate Warner lost a 3-0 decision in his opening match to Pequea Valley's Mitch Ball and then was eliminated following an 11-2 major decision loss to Schuylkill Valley's Ryan Maurer.

At 215, senior Brandon Felus saw his wrestling career end after losing to Dylan  Powell of Juniata in the opening round by a 6-2 score and then suffered a 13-2 major decision loss to Sam Matter of Boiling Springs in the consolation round.

The regional championships, featuring wrestlers from Districts 1, 3 and 11 begins Friday night at Wilson High School. The top five finishers in each weight class advance to the state tournament.

Friday, February 26, 2010

District 3 scores

Boys AAA: Eastern still unbeaten with a 74-55 win over Susquehanna Township. Thought that would be closer. Andrew Nicholas become's Eastern's All-Time leading scorer.
Lancaster Catholic stuns Hershey, 52-46.
Steel-High rolls past York Suburban, 55-47.
East Pennsboro upsets West York, 52-48.
Semi-finals are Monday night at the Giant Center -- Eastern vs. East Pennsboro (a team with East in their name will win) and the Rollers get Catholic. Others now in consolation bracket.
Went 1-3 with the picks there.

Boys A: Lebanon Catholic outscores New Hope Academy, 74-61. Thought that would be closer.
Reading Central Catholic 63, Antietam 43.

Girls AAAA: Reading over Hershey, 43-26 and Mechanicsburg holds off CD East, 41-40.

Girls AA: York Catholic nears finals again with a 61-26 win over Holy Name. Lancaster Mennonite advances with a 51-23 win over Biglerville. Wyomissing 43, Kutztown 32.

Columbia business notes

The banking comunity in downtown Columbia will shrink later this year. The M&T Bank, which at one time was Dauphin Deposit and who knows what other name, at Fourth and Locust streets, will close in June.

Also, the Columbia Eye Care Center owned by Dr. John Kepple, 548 Chestnut St. is changing owners.
The new owner is Dr. Kathryn E. Collins, who purchased the business from Dr. Kepple.
Kepple, who began his practice in Columbia in 1966, is retiring.

Collins also owns the Kissel Village Eye Center in Lititz, since 2001.

Ronca gets 100th win

The first day of wrestling for the Columbia wrestling team is over at the Hersheypark Arena and the good news is there are still three Tide wrestlers alive, with the possibility of advancing to next weekend's regionals.

The big news came in the first round of the 135 pound weight class where senior Joey Ronca joined a small list of Tide wrestlers to win 100 career matches. Ronca's pin in 4:14 over Bryan Widenhammer of Hamburg was his 100th career win, whic will get his name played on the banner in the gym, following renovations.

The win placed Ronca into the second round where he was pinned by Boiling Springs wrestler Tyler Thumma in 3:44. He kept his chances of moving on alive when he scored a 5-4 win over Robbie Moretz of Halifax. Ronca will wrestle Sean Emerich of Kutztown in the consolation bracket tomorrow. If he wins that, he'll be guaranteed to finish in the top six.

Also a match away from the medal round are John Markley (130) and Jake Sentz (285).

Markley in his first match was a win by pin over Kyle Christianson of Kutztown in 3:36. However in the second round he ran into Joe Spisak of Boiling Springs and was a 16-0 (2:31) loser via a tech fall. In the consolation round, Markley pinned Seth Lehman  of Annville-Cleona in 4:35. Markley will next wrestle Kyle Abbott of York Suburban.

At 285, Sentz won his first round match, via a pin in 3:24 over Wyomissing's Malcolm White, but then lasted just 13 seconds getting pinned by Milton Hershey buzz saw Chris Ramirez. In the consolation round, Sentz stayed alive when he showed Derek Hogland of Hamburg the lights in 1:21.

The result of the results are as follows:

119: Derek Zercher was a was a 13-6 winner over Tim Renninger of Annville-Cleona in the opening roun and then was pinned by Boiling Springs' Pete Renda in the second round in 1:20. In the consolation round, Zercher was a 13-9 win over Cory Rank of Wyomissing.

140: Jordan Halter was a tough luck 6-5 loser to Zeb Sheaman of Tulpehocken and saw his sophomore season end when he was pinned by Sam Rhoads of Boiling Springs in 2:33.

160: Nate Warner was also two and out. He lost by major decision in the first round, 11-2, to Ryan Maurer of Schuylkill Valley. His season ended with a 3-0 loss to Pequea Valley's Mitch Ball.

215: Brandon Felus was a 6-2 first round loser to Dylan Powell of Juniata and then was a loser via a major decision to Sam Matter of Boiling Springs by a 15-2 score.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Interviews done

Interviews were completed yesterday at Columbia High School for its vacant football  coaching position.
The next step is expected to be to take the name of the successor to Jason Shoff to the school board's extra-cirrucular committee meeting.
That committee meets Wednesday night. The following week, the Columbia School Board will hold its Committee of the Whole meeting.
Current CHS assistant Michael Burke III is considered the front runner.

Fire damages building in township

Fire caused $600,000 in damage to the Columbia Pattern and Machine Company, 4604 Klinesville Road around 4 a.m. this morning in West Hempfield Township.

PSP Fire Marshal Brian Herr said there was $100,000 damage done to the builing and $500,000 to its contents.
Fire officials said a passing motorist spotted the blaze. When firefighters arrived smoke was coming from the roof with an orange glow. Damage was contained to computer controlled machines, equipment and the roof.

The fire was brought under control around 6 a.m.

Assisting at the the West Hempfield Fire Department on the scene were the Susquehanna and Consolidated Fire Departments from Columbia, Mountville, Fire Department Mount Joy (yes that is correct), Maytown-East Donegal, Rheems, Marietta, Washington Boro and Wrightsville. Many were tankers.

Season ends

They played twice this year. Each won a game on the others' home court.

Wednesday, Annville-Cleona and Columbia met for the third time this season in boys' basketball. Unlike the two league games, one held about 10 before on the Tide's home floor, this one had a lot at stake. Win and you advance in the District Three Class AA playoffs. Lose and its the end of the season and high schoo, careers for many.

At Hershey High School, the two evenly matched foes from Section 4 of the Lancaster-Lebanon League, battled in the first round of the District Three playoffs. To the winner went a Saturday meeting against third seeded Hanover.

And it was Annville-Cleona who is moving on following a 42-41win over the Crimson Tide. Columbia's sesason ends with a 7-16 record.

The story of the game was the play of Annville-Cleona guard Trey Blanding. He scored 24 of his team's 42 points, including the first 11. On the other end of the court, Tide senior Brandon Arnold scored all six of his team's first quarter points. After eight minutes, it was Blanding 7, Arnold 6.

A-C continued to led the game in the second quarter. A big basket was a three-pointer from A-C's Tyler Napierala,, which gave the eventual winners a six-point lead. The Tide bounced back, tying the game at 14-14, before falling behind 16-14 at the half.

The Tide took their first lead of the game to open the second half  by Arnold (13 points), but A-C got a couple of three-pointers in the third quarter, including one by Josh Henning to go up as many as five points in the third quarter. A-C still owned a three-point, 28-25 lead entering the final eight minutes.

The Little Dutchmen increased their lead to 32-25 early in the fourth quarter, before the Tide got back into the game outscoring A-C 8-1 over a three minute span to tie the game at 33-33 on a basket by Tre Simms.

Back in the game, the Tide turned the ball over four straight times and A-C took advantage, taking control of the game, leading 40-35 with under two minutes left. Blanding hit 4-of-4 from the foul line to ice the game for A-C. A three-pointer by Nate Wall (11 points) at the buzzer made it a one point game.

District Three picks

Here are the basketball picks.
Boys 4-A: Hempfield over Penn Manor in a close one; Red Land over York; Wilson easily over Warwick and Reading shoots down Daniel Boone.
Boys 3-A: Eastern over Susquehanna Township; West York over East Pennsboro; Hershey melts Lancaster Catholic and the Rollers falll to York Suburban.
Boys 2-A: Trinity over Upper Dauphin; Delone over McDevitt; Trinity over York Catholic and Hanover easily over Annville-Cleona.
Boys 1-A: Central Catholic rolls over Antietan; Millersburg tops Living Word; Greenwood goes "green" over Canp Hill and Lebanon Catholic has some hope against New Hope.
Girls 4-A: CD upsets Red Lion; Reading tops Hershey; Mifflin beats Harrisburg and Mechanicsburg moves on over CD East.
Girls 3-A: West York over Daniel Boone; Shippensburg over Oley Valley; Trinity rolls over Manheim Central and Lancaster Catholic uphends Palmyra.
Girls 2-A: York Catholic over Holy Name; Wyomissing over Kutztown; Mennonite over Biglerville and Delone overe Brandywine Heights.
Girls 1-A: Steel-High over Central Catholic; Lancaster Country Day over Bible Baptist; Lebanon Catholic over Camp Hill and Greenwood over Conestoga Christian.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

District Three scores, prediction results

Here are the scores from Wednesday's District 3 playoff games:
Boys AAAA: Hempfield 71, Central Dauphin 40; Penn Manor 63, Harrisburg 61; York 71, L-S 38; Red Land 45, Red Lion 36; Wilson 61, McCaskey 33; Warwick 61, Solanco 41; Reading 63, Exeter 48; Daniel Boone 49, Central York 41.
Boys AA: Upper Dauphin 59, Holy Name 55 (2OT); McDevitt 53, Pequea Valley 41; York Catholic 60, Tulpehocken 42.
Girls AAA: Lancaster Catholic 52, Muhlenberg 45; Palmyra 49, Twin Valley 28; Manheim Central 43, Boiling Springs 41; Trinity 48, Elco 35; Shippensburg 61, Northern Lebanon 45; Oley Valley 42, Susquenita 28; Daniel Boone 63, Kennard-Dale 44; West York 49, Eastern 46.
Girls A: Steel-High 77, York Country Day 9; Reading Central Catholic 58, Millersburg 20; Lancaster Country Day 28, Living Word 12; Bible Baptist 56, Harrisburg Academy 54; Lebanon Catholic 61, Antietam 20; Camp Hill 51, Harrisburg Christian 10; Greenwood 69. Lititz Christian 24 and Conestoga Christian 32, Christian School of York 30.
Boys Record for 4-A and 2-A: 9-3 -- overall 22-5.
Girls Record for 3-A and 1-A: 15-1-- overall 22-7
Two-Day Total: 44-12.

First round scores, prediction results

Okay, the first round is over in four of the eight classes in the PIAA playoffs. As I told you, Solanco probably would have a hangover in Girls 4-A from their big week in the L-L League playoffs last week and Cedar Crest needed to guard against a letdown from winning the L-L League. I still picked them, but...
In Boys' 3-A, I picked seven of the eight games right -- losing only when I picked Middletown over East Pennsboro.
In Boys A, I had five of the six first round games correct, losing out when Camp Hill beat out Lancaster Country Day.
I took a bath in girls' basketball.
In 4-A, I lost one of my finalists in Lebanon took a bath last night. In 3-A, I went 4-4, while in 2-A, I went 3-2. There are no L-L League teams left in those two classes.
Here are the scores:
Boys 3-A: Eastern 71, Wyomissing 48; Susquehanna Township 57, Boiling Springs 41; West York 70, Big Spring 36; Hershey 56, Lancaster Catholic 34; York Suburban 60, Muhlenberg 34; Steel-Highh 52, Oley Valley 34.
Boys 1-A: Millersburg 69, Lancaster Christian 34;  Living Word 41, Harrisburg Christian 34; Greenwood 75,  Dayspring Christian 34; Camp Hill 47, Lancaster Country Day 41; New Hope 50,  Mount Calvary 34 and Lebanon Catholic 72, Christian School of York 39.
Girls 4-A: Red Lion 46, Cumberland Valley 36; Central Dauphin 59, Solanco 34; Hershey 50, Cedar Crest 39; Reading 57, Spring Grove 42; Harrisburg 44, Cedar Crest 34; Governor Mifflin 54, Manheim Township 52 (OT); Mechanicsburg 42, New Oxford 23; CD East 43, Lower Dauphin 41.
Girls 2-A: Holy Name 45, Upper Dauphin 28; Wyomissing 54, Hanover 9;  Kutztown 54, Fairfield 29; Biglerville 40, Annville-Cleona 24; Brandywine Heights 36, Tulpehocken 17.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Parent's Club announces event

The Columbia Elementary Parents Club will host a Quarter Auction on Sunday, March 28 at the Columbia No. 1 Fire Company.
Doors open at 1 p.m. and the auction starts at 2 p.m.
The cost is $3.

Columbia Public Library events for March

The Columbia Public Library has released its schedule of events for March.
Tuesday, March 2nd, at 1 PM - Census Testing - must have prior appointment (367-9306)

Wednesday, March 3rd, at 6 PM - Family Film Night - “The Rookie”
Saturday, March 6th, at 10 AM - Saturday Morning Storytime with Mrs. Dottie Johnson. “Happy Birthday, Dr. Seuss!”
Saturday, March 6th, at 10 AM - Census Testing - must have prior appointment (367-9306)
Tuesday, March 9th, at 1 PM - Census Testing - must have prior appointment (367-9306)
Wednesday, March 10th, at 6 PM - Family Film Night - “The Aristocats”
Thursday, March 11th, at 7 PM - Columbia Public Library Board of Directors Meeting. Public is welcome.
Saturday, March 13th, at 10 AM - Saturday Morning Storytime with Mrs. Dottie Johnson. “Are You Wearing Green?”
Saturday, March 13th, at 10 AM - Census Testing - must have prior appointment (367-9306)
Tuesday, March 16th, at 1 PM - Census Testing - must have prior appointment (367-9306)
Wednesday, March 17th, at 6 PM - Family Film Night - “Darby O'Gill and the Little People”
Saturday, March 20th, at 10 AM - Saturday Morning Storytime with Mrs. Dottie Johnson. “Welcome, Spring!”
Saturday, March 20th, at 10 AM - Census Testing - must have prior appointment (367-9306)
Tuesday, March 23rd, at 1 PM - Census Testing - must have prior appointment (367-9306)
Wednesday, March 24th, at 6 PM - Family Film Night - “Angels In the Outfield”
Saturday, March 27th, at 10 AM - Saturday Morning Storytime with Miss Lisa. “Hooray For Easter!”
Saturday, March 27th, at 10 AM - Census Testing - must have prior appointment (367-9306)
Tuesday, March 30th, at 1 PM - Census Testing - must have prior appointment (367-9306)
Wednesday, March 31st, at 6 PM - Family Film Night - “Alvin and the Chipmunks: Mystery of the Easter Chipmunk”
Friday, April 2nd and Saturday, April 3rd - Library Closed for Easter Break
Saturday, April 10th at 10 AM - Saturday Morning Storytime with special guest appearance by Peter Rabbit!
The Census Questionnaire Assistance Center will be open Monday through Thursday from 10 AM to 1 PM beginning March 15. If you did not receive a Census form via the postal service for whatever reason (address unknown, temporary resident, no permanent address, etc.), please stop in between 10 AM and 1 PM Monday through Thursday beginning March 15. It is very important that all citizens be counted for the census!
Our webmaster Samuel Edmond is ready and willing to help you with your income taxes! An appointment must be made in advance - please call 684-2255 to set one up. We have most federal tax forms here at the library and can print out any specialized ones you may need from the IRS website. No charge for forms or assistantance.
Webmaster Samuel Edmond is also taking registrations for his one-on-one computer classes now! Please call 717-435-2039 to register throughout the month

District Three girls' picks

In each of the last two years, there have been two teams from District Three playoffs in the PIAA finals at the Bryce Jordan Center at Penn State. Two years ago, it was Central Dauphin and York Catholic. Last year, it was York Catholic and Lampeter-Strasburg.
So what teams will make the trip to the state finals out of District 3? There are a couple of candidates, but over the next month, it will take a lot of luck, lack of injuries and getting a win when a team doesn't play their best to move on.
So, with that in mind, here are my first round picks and teams that could meet in the finals at the Giant Center next week.
AAAA: Red Lion over Cumberland Valley; Central Dauphin over Solanco, only because the Mares/Mules might still be drained from an unbelieveable schedule from last week, but it could be a toss up; Cedar Crest over Hershey, but the Falcons must avoid a first round letdown after winning the L-L championship; Lebanon over Harrisburg; Township over Governor Mifflin; Mechanicsburg over New Oxford and Lower Dauphin over C.D. East.
Probable finalists: Red Lion over Lebanon.
AAA: West York over Eastern (if this were a boys' game, wow); Daniel Boone over New Oxford; Oley Valley over Susquenita; Shippensburg over Northern Lebanon;. Trinity over Elco. Manheim Central over Boiling Springs; Palmyra over Twin Valley and Lancaster Catholic over Muhlenberg.
Probable finalists: West York over Trinity.
AA: Holy Name over Upper Dauphin; Hanover over Wyomissing; Biglerville over Annville-Cleona and Tulpehocken over Brandywine.
Probable finalists: Lancaster Mennonite over York Catholic.
A: Steel-High over York Country Day; Reading Central Catholic over Millersburg; Lancaster Country Day over Living Word; Bible Baptist over Harrisburg Academy; Lebanon Catholic over Antietam; Camp Hill over Harrisburg Christian; Greenwood over Lititz Christian and Christian School of York over Conestoga Christian.
Probable finalists: Lebanon Catholic over Steel-High.

District Three boys' basketball

The District Three playoffs, otherwise known as the first step in the “Road to Happy Valley” and a trip to the state finals at Penn State and the PIAA finals begins tonight.

Games will be played in Boys Class AAA and A and Girls AAAA and AA tonight and the remaining classes tomorrow night.

So what teams will have the opportunity to play on the big floor at the Giant Center at the end of next week for a district title?

Well, after reading all of the previews, following all the scores for the season and the various league playoffs, I would be surprised in there is a team from the L-L League playing for a district title in boys’ basketball, but it is more likely in girls’ basketball.

Not wait, aren’t two teams from the L-L League top seeds in their respective classes – Hempfield and Lancaster Mennonite? Yes, but while I don’t see neither team making the finals, one of them could and it won’t be Hempfield.

Locally, there is a team that should play for a district title and one that should get into the second round. And the surprise, which I already mentioned is that Hempfield won’t be playing for gold despite their unbeaten record. But I do see the Black Knights playing in the PIAA playoffs because half of the field makes the state tournament in Class AAAA and Class AAA.

First the local team that should be playing for a district title and deep into March are the Golden Knights from Eastern. They have two of the best players in the Class AAA field in guard Austin Tillotson and big man Andrew Nicholas. They also have a solid nucleus of other players.

The Knights meet Wyomissing in their opener tonight and probably will see an athletic Susquehanna Township team on the big floor at the Giant Center on Friday. Their semi-final game should be a battle with YAIAA foe West York and a meeting with either second seed Hershey, the Mid-Penn champion or York Suburban in the finals.

It will be a different story in the state playoffs, because the Knights, if they are in the East will have to run the gauntlet of District 12 schools, which are among the top three ranked teams in the state.

Now let’s talk about the Class AA field and the first round rematch between Columbia and Annville-Cleona at 7:30 p.m., tomorrow night at Hershey High School. Saw both of them play and they are about equal and it depends which Columbia team shows upm who wins. The winner gets third seeded Hanover in the quarter-finals.

Here’s something to think about – with Hanover, the Tide and A-C in the bottom of the bracket, there will be a public school in the semi-finals. The other three teams in the semi-finals, barring any major upsets, which I don’t see will be Catholic or a private school.

So in this class, I’ll take defending champ Trinity.

Next for Boys AAAA, Hempfield is the top seed and unbeaten, but hasn’t had a lot of success in the playoffs recently and has to go through a land mine of a bracket to get to the finals. After tomorrow’s game with a pesky Central Dauphin, the Black Knights will have to face either Penn Manor or Harrisburg, then either YAIAA runner-up York or Mid-Penn runner-up Red Land.

That’s why I don’t see the Black Knights making the finals, but they will make the PIAA playoffs.

Take Reading and Red Land in the finals.

In Boys’ Class A, the Private and Catholic School Invitational, there’s no doubt Reading Central Catholic is the “cream of the crop,” but also watched this private school New Hope Academy from York, who played an independent schedule this year and it made up of castoffs from a number of York area teams.

Here are the first round predictions

Boys A: Antietam over Harrisburg Academy; Millersburg over Lancaster Christian; Greenwood over Day Spring Academy; Lancaster Country Day over Camp Hill; New Hope over Mount Calvary and Lebanon Catholic over the Christian School of York.

Boys AA: Holy Name over Upper Dauphin; McDevitt over Pequea Valley; York Catholic over Tulpehocken and Columbia over Annville-Cleona.

Boys AAA: Eastern over Wyomissing; Susquehanna Township over Boiling Springs; West York over Big Spring; Middletown over East Pennsboro; Hershey over Milton Hershey (that game was moved to Cedar Crest. It was originally scheduled for Milton Hershey); Catholic over Greencastle; Suburban over Muhlenberg and Steel-High over Oley Valley.

Boys AAAA: Hempfield over Central Dauphin; Penn Manor over Hempfield; York over L-S; Red Land over Red Lion; Wilson over McCaskey; Solanco over Warwick; Reading over Exeter and Daniel Boone over Central York.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

District 3 wrestling pairings

Here are the first round pairings, schools and record of the opponents of the Columbia seven, who will compete for a district title, starting Friday at the old Hersheypark Arena.

119: Derek Zercher (16-20) vs. Tim Renninger, Annville-Cleona (23-11).
130: John Markley (27-11) vs. Kyle Christianson, Kutztown (10-11).
135: Joe Ronca (32-6) vs. Bryan Wiedenhammere, Hamburg (17-21).
140: Jordon Halter (29-10) vs. Zeb Sheman, Tulpehocken (11-11).
160: Nathan Warner (28-9) vs Mitch Ball, Pequea Vallley (26-10).
215: Brandon Felus (25-6) vs. Dylan Powell, Juniata (14-8).
285: Jacob Sentz (22-15) vs. Malcolm White, Wyomissing (7-15).

Wrestlers advance 7

The first step in the mythical “Road to Hershey” was a successful one for the Columbia Crimson Tide wrestling team on Saturday.

Coach Scott Rupp and his staff took 14 wrestlers to the Class AA sectional tournament at Bermudian Springs High School and seven of those 14 advanced to this week’s District Three championships at the old Hersheypark Arena.

Leading the way for the Tide wrestlers were Joe Ronca and Nate Warner, who placed second at their respective weight classes, 135 and 160 pounds. Both lost in the finals.

Ronca, who moved down a weight class for the post-season, entered the sectional tournament needing three wins for 100 for his career. He fell one short when he lost in the finals 10-7 to Noah Blascone of Bermudian Springs.

At 160, Warner, a sophomore, was also a top seed. He lost in the finals to Tyler Fitzkee of Bermudian Springs, 10-0.

Placing third for the Tide were Jake Sentz (285), Jordon Halter (140) and John Markley (130).

Placing fourth for the Tide were Derek Zercher (119) and Brandon Felus (215).

Others participating from Columbia and not advancing were Tony Barton (103), Phil Stark (112), Alan Foehlinger (125), Todd Lingafelt (145), Derrick Brooks (171) and Marcus Fischer (189).

District 3 scores

Here are the scores from the pig-tail round of the District Three playoffs. Games were played Friday and Saturday.
The "official" tournament starts Tuesday. Working a preview of all the classifications, telling you who to watch and who might not end up in Hershey.
Boys Class AAAA
Central Dauphin 64, Dover 40
L-S 47, Carlisle 43
Red Lion 69, Governor Mifflin 52
McCaskey 69, Cocalico 56
Warwick 61, Mechanicsburg 46
Exeter 57, Chambersburg 50
Central York 56, Dallastown 49

Boys Class AAA
Wyomissing 60, Donegal 38
Big Spring 48, Schuykill Valley 47
Milton Hershey 57, Shippensburg 52
Muhlenberg 53, Kennard-Dale 52

Girls Class AAAA
Cumberland Valley 43, Carlisle 37
Hershey 37, South Western 26
Spring Grove 36, Wilson 33
Harrisburg 49, Hempfield 32
New Oxford 49, Dallastown 45
CD East 56, Penn Manor 39

Girls Class AAA
Eastern 45, Schuylkill Valley 37
Susquenita 48, Big Spring 42
Northern Lebanon 37, West Perry 30
Elco 50, Bermudian Springs 44
Twin Valley 37, East Pennsboro 31

League champs

Here is a list of various league basketball champions around District 3
Boys: Hempfield 44, Cocalico 35
Girls: Cedar Crest 53, Solanco 45
Boys: Eastern 62, York High 55
Girls: Red Lion 36, West York 33
Boys: Hershey 58, Red Land 45
Girls: Central Dauphin 49, Trinity 31
Berks County
Boys: Reading 64, Daniel Boone 55
Girls: Reaading 40, Wilson 39

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Pequea Valley 61, Columbia 59

Photos by Pat Kreider

The Columbia boys' basketball team closed its regular season with a disappointing 61-59 loss to Pequea Valley.
Both teams were using the game as a tune-up for this week's District 3 playoffs, which begin Wednesday.
The Tide will travel the Hershey Highway for a 7:30 p.m. game with Section 4 foe Annville-Cleona. PV takes on Bishop McDevitt. (There is an earlier post on the playoff game).
Columbia had trouble most of the game guarding PV's leading scorer. He ripped the Tide for 29 points and hit 7 of 10 from the foul line.
The Tide jumped out quick against the Braves, leading 22-14 after one quarter and looked well on the way to a win. But has been so often the case this season, the Tide struggled in the second quarter, scoring just four points. They trailed 31-26 at the half.
The second half wasn't much better for the home team as they fell behind by eight points, before putting ona furious rally, only to fall short when a three-pointer at the buzzer rimed out.
Tre Simms led the Tide with 21 points, followed by Nate Wall with 12.

Wrestling update

Just got a phone call from coach Scott Rupp at Bermudian Springs High School -- site of the Section 1 sectional.
Columbia has two wrestlers -- Joe Ronca (135) and Nate Warner (160) going for sectional titles tonight.
Five others -- Derek Zercher (119), John Markley (130, Jordan Halter (140), Brandon Felus (215) and Jake Sentz (285) going for third and fourth.
All seven advance to the District Three championships next Friday and Saturday at the ancient Hersheypark Arena.

As a side note, if Ronca wins his championship bout tonight, it should give him 100 wins for his CHS career.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Trivia question

Okay Columbia basketball fans -- since Harriton High School in Lower Merion is in the news for some computer spying on students. Anyone recall the year Columbia played Harriton in the state basketball playoffs? What was the year? Where was the game at? Who was the famous baseball player who had a son playing on Harriton?

Attention Columbia High School seniors!

Here's a challenge for seniors at Columbia High School. President Obama is looking for a high school in the United States to deliver a commencement address.
The web site is
It gives you the details on how to get the President, who visited the Columbia Market House (see picture) during the campaign in September 2008, to consider a school for a commencement address.
There is a form to fill out and the principal must sign off on it. It's worth a shot and would bring positive publicity to our great scshool and community.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Library fines to increase

Public libraries in Lancaster County will increase fines on certain overdue materials effective on April 1. Increases will apply to adult and juvenile materials as follows: fines on the late return of adult and YA materials will increase from 20 cents per day to 30 cents per day and from 10 per day to 20 per day for children’s materials. Fines for videos and DVDs, which is $1 per item per day, will remain the same.

Public Libraries have experienced reduced state and county funding for 2010, which factored into the decision to increase extended use fees at Lancaster County’s public libraries. The increases come at a critical time when local funding for library services remains flat and state funding was reduced, impacting all public library budgets, while demand for library services continues to rise.

The public can easily avoid these charges by keeping their library account up to date and renewing checked out items either by phone 394-1721 or online at Please note that not all library materials are subject to renewal. If a patron’s account includes an email address, an email reminder is sent out before materials are due.

For more information, please contact your local public library. For a complete list of Lancaster County’s public libraries, go to and select Your Local Library.

The Road to Hershey begins

For the Columbia wrestling team, the mythical “Road to Hershey” begins Saturday with their participation in a Class AA sectional tournament at Bermudian Springs High School.

The one-day tournament features not only the Crimson Tide but also Lancaster Catholic from the L-L League, but also eight teams from the York-Adams League including Eastern.

Coach Scott Rupp’s team drew two top seeds for the first link in the “Road to Hershey” in senior Joe Ronca (30-5) at 135 and sophomore Nathan Warner (26-8) at 160. Number two seeds for the Tide are John Markley (130) and Brandon Felus (215). Third seeds are Jordan Halter (140) and Jake Sentz (285), while Johnny Vazquez (152) is a fourth seed.

Wrestlers have to finish in the top four at their respective weight class to make it to next weekend’s District Three Class AA championships at the old (I mean old) Hersheypark Arena.

One of the things to watch this weekend is Ronca’s quest for his 100th career win, which could happen this weekend, or early next weekend, if he gets that far.

Ronca, who dropped a weight class, will meet 4-11 John Vu of York Suburban High School in the first round.

The Tide’s other top seed, Warner, will meet the winner of the Colin Butler (Lancaster Catholic, 7-15)/Derek Dick (Fairfield, 7-8) in the first round.

Here is a weight class by weight class rundown of who each Tide wrestler will face in the first round.

103: Tony Barton (10-21) will face top-seeded Brad Farley (25-0) of Bermudian Springs in the first round.

112: Phillip Stark (9-19) will face fourth-seeded Evan Goshert (9-14) of Eastern York.

119: Derek Zercher (14-18) will face Biglerville’s Nick Leiphart (21-7).

125: Alan Foehlinger (6-18) will face Matt Galetti (2-14) in a pig tail match. Galetti is from York Suburban.

130: Markley, the number two seed will put his 24-11 record on the line in the first round against the winner of a pig tail match between Damon Becker (18-12) of Bermudian and Matt Flick (3-12) of Lancaster Catholic.

140: Halter will move up a weight class with a 26-9 record and a number three seed and battle Fairfield’s Andrew Blinn (8-14).

145: Todd Lingafelt (15-18) will meet Lancaster Catholic’s Aaron Law (15-9).

152: Vazquez (13-13) will meet Kevin Nichols (12-13) of Biglerville.

171: Derrick Brooks (7-12) will meet Robert Aaron Mackley of Eastern (21-3).

189: Despite a 20-win season, Marcus Fischer (20-14) has to wrestle a pig tail match against Troy Hewitt (4-17) of Fairfield. The winner gets Bermudian’s Matt Wolf.

215: Felus (23-4) will face Jordan Brooks (8-11) of Biglerville.

285: Sentz (20-14) will face Jacob Higgins (7-8) of Eastern.

The Tide completed its regular season with a trip to Gettysburg last Monday for an invitational on President’s Day, where they placed second as a team. Ronca, Warner, Fischer and Felus lost in the championship finals, while Stark was second. In round four of the round robin event, Halter and Sentz were winners, while Lingafelt lost in that round.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Fastnacht Time!

Got my fastnachts from Holy Trinity this morning. They were still a little warm. It's the first time in two years I had any.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Here is the link

For updates on the District Three basketball playoffs and wrestling sectionals, etc.

Columbia football update

The Columbia School Board will meet Thursday night.

Columbia High School has been without a football coach since the first of the year.

Fifteen people have applied to replace Jason Shoff, who resigned after six years as head coach. As of the weekend, no interviews had been scheduled, that’s because at least one school official at Columbia has an in-house candidate that stands heads and shoulders above those from the outside and wants to give it to that coach, while other “powers to be” want to interview for the position.

It is not known as of today if there will or has been an interview for the coaching position or if the school board will have a name to approve at its meeting on Thursday.

Columbia is one of two schools in the L-L League without a football coach is McCaskey, who doesn’t appear to be close to hiring a replacement.

The other L-L school who had a coaching opening was Northern Lebanon and that was filled last week when Millersburg coach Ray Wall was hired to replace Jack Beidler, who got run out of the position. Millersburg won the District 3 Class A title this past season, beating the two-time defending state chap Steel-High in the process.

Refer to an earlier post to see who the favorite is for the Columbia position.

Columbia in the playoffs

Here are two things to note when it comes to the District 3 Class AA playoffs, which begin next Wednesday.

It’s been a long while since a public school won a Class AA title (Columbia) and a long time since a public school got to the finals. That could happen this year in the bottom half of the Class AA field. Three of the teams that could reach the semi-finals are public schools – Columbia, Annville-Cleona and Hanover. Of course, one of the three will have to go through Trinity to get to the finals. But at least one of the three has that chance to reach the semi-finals.

And usually when you are talking playoffs, you usually don’t get an opponent that you are too familiar with.

Well, for the Columbia boys’ basketball team, that won’t happen this year. Their first round opponent will be Section 4 foe Annville-Cleona, who they lost to on Saturday by a 45-28 score. They also beat A-C this year, 54-50.

Both teams are evenly matched. A-C led by Tyler Blanding with his 16 PPG average likes the three-pointer as they drained 108 treys for the year led by Alec Wizar with 33. That’s how they broke Saturday’s game open, hitting eight from behind the arc in the first half.

Columbia will look for scoring from seniors Brandon Arnold and Nate Wall and junior Tre’ Simms, along with the steady ball handling of freshman Nick Nobile. The play of sophomores Michael Burke and Seth Lefever will be key.

This game at best can be described as a toss up game, depending if A-C is hot from the outside and what Columbia team shows up.

If Columbia wins next Wednesday’s game at Hershey High School (7:30 p.m. tip), they will face third-seeded Hanover on Saturday at high noon at Northern High School near Dillsburg, York County. The Nighthawks, who are in the York-Adams League playoffs, are 16-4. Had Columbia beat Delone Catholic in the season opener, the two would have played in the finals of the Hanover Tip-Off Tournament.

Lancaster Mennonite from Section 4 of the L-L League is the top seed in the Class AA field and they will meet the winner of the Holy Name/Upper Dauphin game in the quarter-finals. The HN/UDA game is the lid lifter next Wednesday at Hershey High School.

The fourth seed is Delone, who will meet the winner of the Bishop McDevitt/Pequea Valley game.

Second seed Trinity, probably the best team in the Class AA field will meet the winner of the York Catholic/Tulpehocken game in the quarter-finals.

The top three teams in the Class AA field make the PIAA playoffs.

Girls' season in review

The 2009-10 basketball season at Columbia High School has been over for the Tide girls for more than a week now.

The Tide girls won’t play their final two games against Pequea Valley and Annville-Cleona and will finish 0-20.

So let’s get the unpleasant stuff out of the way first. This will be first time since I think the early 1980s that Columbia won’t participate in the District 3 playoffs, where they haven’t advanced past the first round since Rick Bentley left as coach since I think it was after the 2000 season. It’s also the first time since the early 1980s or even before that the Tide failed to win a game in girls’ basketball.

Now, let’s move on.

The Tide program has dropped from the top of the L-L League since Bentley left as coach to the bottom. In came new coach/old coach Gary Sutton, who guided the Tide boys to a state championship back in 1987. With his arrival came a whole new way of playing basketball for the girls. There were multiple offenses, defenses and other characteristics that the girls hadn’t seen in years. The entire season, learning a new system was a learning experience on both sides. Despite a youthful roster, the Tide girls played hard every game. They just didn’t have the varsity experience yet,

For me, you saw 12 of their 20 games, there were several bright spots.

The first was the play was senior guard Emily Nobile, who I always felt should have played more varsity before this year, relished in the role of a leader and a point guard. She led the Tide in scoring with an average of around 12 points a game. She was deadly from the foul line and one of the best three-point shooters in the section.

The other thing I saw that I liked. For the most part, the Tide was able to adjust on the fly to a new style. There were moments when it looked ugly, but that can be expected.

There’s a good future here. There are four/five starters coming back and a number of players moving up from the junior high, which had a .500 season that will help with numbers and the re-establishment of the junior varsity team,

The other four/five starters back – juniors Becca Kuhn and Jenna Geesey, sophomore Paige Herchelroath and freshmen Jenna Plastino and Ashlyn Phillips all got a taste of varsity life this year and will be better next season.

I thought going in, the Tide’s schedule was brutal – L-S played for a state title last season (Columbia played them twice), Mennonite just missed out on a state tile appearance ans there was the two Catholics – Lancaster Catholic and Lebanon Catholic. Had to that Hempfield and you got a rough schedule for such a young team.

The schedule next season, other than the league schedule will not nearly be that tough, so winning following a good off-season, will be in order for the Tide.

Some positive publicity

Mark this date down!

Thursday, February 25, 2010
Relay for Life Night
Union Station
4th & Union St
Columbia, PA
6:00 pm - midnight
Stop in to support a great cause
Proceeds go to the American Cancer Society
Sponsored by the Cancer Crusaders

Final Home Game

The Columbia boys' basketball team will host Pequea Valley in a varsity only game on the hill tomorrow at 6 p.m.
It will be the final game in the Elmer Kreiser Gym as we now know it. The gym will be renovated soon and will have a new look to it for the 2010-11 season.
The reason it is a varsity only game is a number of players didn't attend practice on Monday and also, the L-L League says junior high games can't be played after a certain date.
I'd like to hear some of the memories people have of the old gym. You can list them in the comment section.
The Tide boys will face Annville-Cleona for the third time this season next Wednesday at 7:30 p.m., in Hershey. Don't get too excited, its at Hershey High School -- not the Giant Center!

Hall of Fame nominees

Received in the mail over late last week or after the February Blizzard was the 2010 ballot for the Susquehanna Valley Chapter of the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame.

The annual banquet will be held May 1, at the Susquehanna Fire Company. All ballots must be returned to Rich Gerfin by March 9. Each voter must vote fir six individuals.

The deceased inductee this year will be former Columbia High football star Mike Wolfgang. He was inducted into the Columbia High School Athletic Hall of Fame last September.

The nominees are:

P. Abbott Asplin, who played football and basketball at F&M in 1936 and graduated fro Leighton High School.

Robert Brandt, former football player at Manheim Township.

Ron Caulwell, former athletic director at Columbia High School.

Gayne Deshler, former football coach at Donegal.

Jim Doughtery, who at one time was a former assistant coach with the old Columbia Raiders.

Bill Goad, former golf coach at Eastern High School.

Michael Orstein, former swimmer at McCaskey and Manheim Township.

Glenn Robinson, current basketball coach at F&M.

John Thomas, former wrestler at Columbia.

Robert Thomas, former fast pitch softball player.

Andrew Tompos, former golfer at F&M.

Leslie Bair Vink, former gymnast at Hempfield.

William Walton, a four-sport athlete at Penn Manor.

Jon Witman, former Eastern, Penn State and Pittsburgh Steeler football player.

For what its worth, my six were Caulwell, Deshler, G-Rob, Witman, Goad and Doughtery.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

A piece of our town's history covered

This was sent to me by a friend of Columbia's Historic Wright Mansion on Second Street.

Working on Stuff

Here's what I am working on for today or Monday before the next blizzard hits:
1. District 3 playoffs seedings are out.
2. My thoughts on what it will take for Columbia to have a paper again. Yes, I believe there is a market.
3. An update on the coaching search at Columbia High School.
4. Review of the Columbia girls' basketball season.
5. Another poll, not sure of the topic yet.

check me out later today and tomorrow!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Do you know this man?

West Hempfield Township Police are looking for a black male with a heavy build, in his 30s or 40s with a beard and mustache after passing counterfeit $100 bills during the purchase of more than $800 in merchandise from the Kmart store in the 3900 block of Columbia Avenue.
Police said the incident happened Jan. 20.
The suspect, pictured, is wanted for similar incidents in York and Lancaster counties.
Anyone with information is asked to call police at 285-5191


A tough one to write

NOTE: There will be a follow up on this in the next few days.

About a year ago this time, I started this, wrote a few paragraphs and stopped. Now, its time to start this again, as for the second time in a year, our great town is losing its newspaper as the Columbia Register ends its nine month run.

It’s no surprise at least to me and others, newspapers are dying at an alarming rate across the nation, I’m kind of surprised that local community papers aren’t making it. They have the ability to deliver what the major papers can’t and that is local news and sports. But this is the third time I have had a newspaper close on me and will probably be the last time. As much as I enjoy reporting on the events of our great town, I just don’t see anyone coming into a tough market. But despite the doom and gloom forecasts, I still think a local newspaper dedicated to the Columbia area can still make it.

For many, there is a lot more to do today than there was when I was younger and many have found ways, other than a newspaper to get their news, Still, I always hoped Columbia would newspaper till the end of time.

Last year when I sat down to pen this going away column, there was so much I wanted to write that I may have forgotten stuff.

This is the start of my 26th year of newspaper writing in Columbia. Along the way, I made many great friends,.met a lot of great people, covered a lot of outstanding events, worked with some good people and attended a lot of meetings and events.

Before coming to the Columbia News back in 1984, I got some pretty good training when I worked at WSBA and a good work ethic from the likes of Ed Wickenheiser, Ron Corbin and the late Phil Eberly. They also taught me a lot of professionalism and the right way to do things.

Then came the Columbia News, where I learned much from “Teedy” Aston and not so much from those who followed him.

Within a week after that publication closed, Columbia got rescued by the Ledger Newspaper group, which had a slew of owners during 19 years. It really helped me learn the community more than I ever knew. I learned the people, who I could trust and who I could not.

I learned a lot about running a newspaper, There were some great times and long hours.

I can’t really tell you what the best story I ever covered was, because there were so many. The Homecoming, May Days, parades, craft shows and Bridge Busts may have all run together, but they were unique events to our town.

I think in 26 years, I’ve been to thousands of meetings and I can honestly say there were times I wanted to stand up at meetings and tell people to shit down and shut up and there were times I just wanted to get up and leave. But I didn’t because it was my job to be there.

In 26 years, I can’t remember being late for too many events. I believed on being at places early and not walking in late and creating a scene like some.

There were the tragedies in our town. Many of them hit home because we are a small town and ade for some tough writing.

If there is one thing I was always proud of was the ability to write about the greatest high school of all times and its athletic programs. I’ll always be a fan.

As for the people, I can tell you, I like most of them. But there are a few, probably less than five over 26 years that I knew just weren’t right for Columbia. I could see through their images they presented.

I’ll never forget the 1987 state championship run. That will always remain special.

As I said earlier, I had plan to write this about a year ago. I stopped, but I did start writing something back in July when I had my accident. That took a lot more out of me than I first thought. I’m not the same person I was and will never be the same person. I’m strong because I have to be, but...

I’d like to list a number of people who have greatly helped me over the many years, but I don’t want to miss anyone.

I’m gonna be here. I’m not leaving town, I’ll just be in a different role. Perhaps trying a Columbia blog, because there might not be another way to get the news out to our town.

Thanks Columbia for many great memories and for allowing me to come into your homes each week.

I hope I made a difference.

Just in case you didn't get the last edition

Sometime this week, perhaps its already done, there will be interviews for the vacant Columbia High School football coaching position. Next week, Columbia High School is expected to have a new leader for its football program, which went 0-10 this year and 3-18 over the previous two seasons.

Perhaps as many as six people have been interviewed, unfortunately, I won’t be able to tell you before everyone else in the local media who the Tide’s next boss will be.

This is the last time, perhaps only for a while, or maybe forever, I will write a column for a newspaper. I’m trying to re-discover blog writing, which I did about a year ago ( to let the people know what is happening in our town.

This was one of the stories I was actually looking forward to writing. See by the time, Columbia had a new coach, there would only be the Tide boys in the district playoffs and the wrestlers would be getting ready for sectionals.

But, there won’t be that “home town” feeling in stories about our new coach.

I’ve asked and many of who that have attended basketball games or wrestling matches in recent weeks have probably seen me talking with CHS AD Jim Rhoads.

He did tell me he got 15 applicants for the position, which I found amazing and shared with me who some of the names were. I’m not going to share them, other than one, the person I think and some other I’ve talked with can do the job and that would be current Tide assistant Mike Burke III.

Outside of being away from the game for a couple of years and returning this year as defensive coordinator, Burke has given most of his post-high school life to the program, from junior high coach to coaching at the varsity level.

Of the names I’ve been told, there’s no one there that jumps out at me and says hire him.

I know MB3 had a meeting last month shortly after the rumors were confirmed of Jason Shoff’s departure with prospective players in grades 7-11 and close to 90 kids showed up. There have been a couple of Sunday workouts with around 40 kids showing up.

That’s a positive. I’ve talked with some of the prospective players and those I’ve talked with at basketball or wrestling, all favor MB3.

Since my days as a student at Columbia High School, then as a reporter, Columbia hasn‘t had much success with outsiders coming in and trying to coach our teams.

Basketball tried it three in the last 30 plus years. I remember when I was a student, George Hanna coached the Tide for one year and left and then there was Gary Sutton. He’s the only one who enjoyed success. Then there was John Larkin and many couldn’t wait for him to ride out of town.

There are a few in other sports, but two current ones that come to mind are Bob Pederson, who will be in his second year with the Tide in baseball and appears to have the Tide headed in the right direction and new softball coach Brad Brubaker, who many are looking for good things out of.

But Columbia has never enjoyed the success in those sports that they have in football and basketball.

And for that reason I was surprised there were 15 applicants for the position, knowing the school usually stays within the Columbia family.

Okay, sure, you can say bringing someone in from the outside might revive the program. They might, but it will take them a few months to learn the kids, set up the off-season and learn the L-L League. And there probably won’t be 90 kids at a meeting either. There’s also the need to get a staff in place along with the schemes the Tide will use. Right now, I here there’s a pretty good staff in place and the schemes are already there, they just need tweaking.

I hope the powers to be up on the hill realize this is one position to keep “in house” and keep it “within the family.”

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Donation to Hoop Boosters

Mr.and Mrs. John Gamby (center) recently made a generous donation to the Columbia Basketball Booster Club. They are shown here with senior players Brandon Arnold and Emily Nobile.

The Thursday clean-up from the Blizzard of 2010

Here are various pictures from the neighbors cleaning up from the great blizzard. It's a scene being repeated all over our town.

Changes, changes, changes

Here's an update today on the athletic schedule on the hill:

Girls' Basketball: The Tide will travel tomorrow (Friday) to Annville-Cleona. The Pequea Valley game has been cancelled.

Boys' Basketball: The Tide will host Annville-Cleona tomorrow (Friday) and entertain Pequea Valley, Saturday, with j.v. starting at noon.

Wrestling: The Tide is scheduled to travel to McCaksey tomorrow.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Snow pictures

State of Emergency

Columbia Mayor Leo Lutz has issued a Snow Emergency declaration for the borough starting at noon, ending tomorrow.

What that means is vehicle traffic, except for emergency vehicles and those helping to remove snow is banned from the streets in Columbia.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Columbia schedule changes

Tonight's wrestling match with Penn Manor has been moved to 5 p.m.

The boys' basketball game with Pequea Valley tomorrow night, will be played on Friday, starting with the junior high game at 4 p.m.  The Tide boys will also play Annville-Cleona on Thursday.

The girls' basketball game with Pequea Valley is also off and probably won't be re-scheduled.

The Tide girls will play at Annville-Cleona on Friday.

Photos by Patricia Kreider

Tide teams swept by Lancaster Catholic

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Snow Images

These are pictures out my front door taken this morning. The borough street department was up the street at least twice this morning. Measured about 20 inches outside.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Columbia officer accepted into program

Columbia Borough Police Officer Daniel Bell, demoted from detective after his May DUI crash in Hallam, has been accepted into a pretrial diversionary program.
Bell will be allowed to carry his sidearm on duty while in the Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition program, according to the York County District Attorney's Office. People on ARD or on probation are typically required to surrender their weapons.

Bell, 36, of Hellam Township, was charged with driving under the influence, accidents involving damage to an unattended vehicle, careless driving, failure to notify police and driving in the wrong lane after his Jeep Cherokee struck a parked, unoccupied Jeep Cherokee in the 400 block of East Market Street in Hallam about 3 a.m. May 3.

A blood test placed Bell's alcohol level at 0.184 percent, more than twice the 0.08 percent level at which an adult driver is considered to be drunk under Pennsylvania law.

The collision flipped Bell's Jeep onto its roof and ripped the right rear passenger tire off the other Jeep and pushed that vehicle from the roadway into a nearby driveway.

Bell left the scene after the crash, police said. A Hellam Township Police officer found Bell's badge, driver's license, police identification and a .25-caliber handgun in the Bell's Jeep.

Wing Bowl 18

'Super' Squibb defends title at WIP's Wing Bowl 18

PHILADELPHIA – The defending champion returned to WIP’s Wing Bowl 18 and devoured the competition. Jonathan “Super” Squibb, the skinny 24-year-old from Winslow Township, N.J., ate 238 wings in 30 minutes to set up a wing-off next year with three-time champion, Joey Chestnut of San Jose, Calif., a professional eater.

Schedule update

Tomorrow's Gettysburg Invitational that the Columbia wrestling team was to compete in was postponed.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Wrestlers get easy "W"

The Columbia wrestling team scored an easy 78-6 win over York High tonight.

On Parent's and Senior Night, the Tide won all of its bouts by either pin or forfeit.

Weather permitting, the Tide is scheduled to participate in the Gettysburg Invitational on Saturday.

Columbia's final home meet will be Tuesday, Feb. 9 against Penn Manor.

They will also wrestle McCaskey next week and have sectionals at Bermudian Springs on Saturday, Feb. 20.

Schedule changes on the hill

With the arrival or pending plans for the "big one" tomorrow into Saturday, Columbia High School has announced schedule changes in basketball.
The boys' game with Annville-Cleona will now be played Thursday, Feb. 11 at Columbia.
The Tide girls will finish the season on Friday, Feb. 12 at Annville-Cleona.

Stay tuned for any possible changes.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Will the memories be the same?

It’s kind of hard to believe but the 2009-10 winter sports season ends in a little ore than 12 days and then comes the endless post-season as teams and athletes prepare to make runs at state championships.
Columbia fans might want to mark next Wednesday on their calendars. Sure, its nothing more than the final regular season game of the season with Pequea Valley, but its also the last game for the Elmer Kreiser Gym as we have known it for more than 50 years.
That’s because shortly after the end of the season, the gym will begin receiving a new look as the final part of the renovations at the high school complex.
Should it be a night to remember the past? It might be for the thousands of fans who have attended games and school events over the years.
In case you haven’t heard, the wall on the south end of the gym will be removed, kicked out to the sidewalk. There will be renovations to the locker areas, along with locker areas and team rooms added. The officials will finally have their own place to go and the entrance will be changed to the west end of the school.
And, there will be bleachers added to the south end of the court.
So as the Kreiser Gym moves into the 21st century, does that mean the Crimson Tide will loose its home court advantage?
That question won’t be answered until next year but I still marvel that even after all these years, there are still teams that enter our little band box of a gym and marvel at its history, whether it be the multitude of trophies in the gym lobby or the banners and retired uniforms inside the four walls.
That and the closeness of the crowd make our gym unique and probably worth a few points or wins.
But as I look back over the many years as a student, fan and reporter covering events inside the gym, there are a lot of memories, many of them good.
As you walk into the gym, you always know where people sit. If they are not in their usual seats, you have to wonder if something is wrong. If most fans are not greeting the officials as they come in with a smile and “hey if you heed help,” its very unusual.
There have been the May Day celebrations, an unique spring activity, just for Columbia,
and the anxious moments of prospective graduates before commencement. Also the many dances held in the gym back in the day.
And the endless basketball games and wrestling matches.
I’ve heard all the stories from folks a lot older than me of having to stand in line for hours to get into the gym for a big game. Those type stories never get old.
When I was a student, there was nothing better than hearing the German Band, now called the Pep Band blaring their tunes from the press box as the Tide took the floor in those white satin warm-ups.
Sure, there were some down times since I was a student in the 1970s, but the place on the hill was always special.
The 1980s brought a rebirth of Columbia basketball, both on the boys and girls side. Oh those big games and great players. The good teams that use to visit and the legendary coaches.
The packed houses, night in and night out. Now about the only time the “old barn” is packed is when a certain tea wearing purple makes their annual visit. So, I big gym with more seating might not be the best thing that happened.
I got to see, as many others did, some record setting performances by teams and individuals.
There are a couple of events that really have stood out over the years for me.
First and foremost, was the big rally in the gym after the Tide won the state championship in 1987. I never saw the place that full before and probably won’t ever again. The memories of that entire post-season run won’t soon go away.
Second was probably the night Columbia played Warwick in boys’ basketball back when Jack Hurd was a Warrior and Mike Wisler wore the crimson and gold. It was a much anticipated match-up of premier players and teams. Warwick entered the game with a 59-game winning streak. The streak ended that night.
Third had nothing to do with a game being played on the court, but the night the gym received its name. There was a night honoring the late Elmer Kreiser, the longtime principal and coach at the school. So many of the greats came back that night to honor the Coach.
I can remember doing an interview with Mr. Kreiser at his home the week before the ceremony and I’ve never been that nervous interviewing someone in my life, because he was such a special person.
There were a couple of other retirements since that time, but none had the impact of that night.
There were the classic girls’ games when Warwick and Craig Wagaman and Ephrata and Jan Witmer visited. I remember one night, the lights went out in the gym and the game was moved to Park School.
And lastly was the night in the early 1990s when Columbia and Solanco had very good teams and many thought Solanco had some illegal players on their roster. A packed house, which included officials from the PIAA saw a dandy of a game that night. Oh by the way, that year, Columbia went to the eastern finals and I think Solanco was eliminated in the first round of the playoffs.
There are probably many nights and games I could write about. These are just some and I’m sure other people have more.
Did some changes need to be redone inside the gym? Yes. Will it lose its charm as one of the “most hated places” in the L-L League to play a game in? I hope not, but I know it will take a little bit of adjusting too next season as the gym now gets a long overdue make over.
So in a lot of ways, I think Wednesday, Feb. 10 will be an historic night as will the first game in the “new” Elmer Kreiser Gym.

PT is over and moving forward

Well my therapy ended last week, with the not-so confident ability of walking with two canes as I walk. I like the walker better for now, but I know I can be walking soon with the two canes, hopefully down to one and down the road a little ways without any my aids.
That’s my goal and I will take my time getting to that goal, as my confidence factor improves. It’s still gonna be a while before I take to the streets with two canes. I want to make sure I can navigate my apartment first before I venture out on the sidewalks and streets of our town.
Now that the weather appears to be turning toward the good, I recently took my recovery to another step. I’m now confident walking down my street and taking the bus in town and doing some walking on Locust Street. Perhaps in time, I could see myself walking in town, but I’m not going to push it.
So, why am I walking about a half block to get the bus to go in town?
Well, one it is a confidence factor. My confidence has grown over the many months thanks to the work of Josh and Aaron at the Columbia Health Center’s physical therapy facility. Had it not been for their work with me, it’s doubtful I’d be walking or have the ability to walk any distance at all.
Secondly, I was getting a real bad case of cabin fever. There’s only so much daytime television and playing on the computer one can handle in a day’s time. That might not change in a few weeks when spring training starts, who knows.
So, why I am writing about my ability to get the bus in town. Well, outside of it being a new venture for me, its kind of different.
There were two things that worried me at first. One, was the condition of the street I live on, which like many of our streets in town, isn’t the greatest. Worried about taking a dive on Ninth Street and going down Joe Frazier back in the day when he fought Ali. That wouldn’t be good. Plus, I really wasn’t sure about using the steps to get on the bus, but have had no problem.
Of course now that I’ve started my week day trek on an almost daily basis, there are a couple of other things I have noticed, I’d like to bring to everyone’s attention, if they haven’t noticed.
One, is no two sidewalks in Columbia are the same. They may look the same, but they are raised in some areas the cracks are not always the same. I’m surprised more people haven’t gone down for the eight count, so to speak.
And there was one area I recently walked in, where it look as though someone did some cleaning on the sidewalks with water and it iced up a little. There was no salt or anything placed on the sidewalk and was a lawsuit waiting to happen if someone had fallen.
I’ve also noticed our streets are in not the greatest shape, but then we all knew that, but also, they are in need of a good cleaning. I understand the borough’s street sweeper has been down and will be down for a long period of time, but all of the streets have been punished by the winter mess. That makes walking sometimes a little dangerous.
All in all though, the “new: experience of walking our streets hasn’t been too bad, I just got to be able to dodge the land mines myself and others have been presented.

A new start, new name to blog

Since I received word this afternoon that the Columbia Register has decided to end publication as of next Thursday Feb.11, I've decided to go back to soething I really enjoyed -- blogging.

I did it about a year ago until the Columbia Ledger folded its doors and still feel that our great town neeeds a way to hear and read about what is going on in our community.

I'd like to start the re-named Tide Talk and name it Columbia Talk and use this venue to let people know what is going on at meetings and troughout the community.

But to do this, I need everyone's help. Send me information on community evets, press releases, including pictures. You can reach me at or via my cell at 342-1234. My mailing address is 644 South Ninth St.

I'd like to make this work.