Bucks Win District Title, But Lose to Bishop McDevit in PIAA playoffs

DHS Coach - Bucks football 3

Rich Banick Photography ©

By Steve Svetovich

Coach Kevin McHale and his Dunmore Bucks finished the season strong, winning another district title, but lost to Bishop McDevitt, 28-13, in the PIAA Class 2A first round contest Friday, November 15.

Dunmore defeated Mid Valley, 42-7, to win the District 2, Class 2A title the week before. Junior back Cristian Buckley scored three touchdowns, two receiving and one rushing, in the district title win.

Dunmore beat Susquehanna, 48-20, in the District 2, Class 2A semifinal, Friday, November 1, at Dunmore. Rayshaun Dawkins rushed for 173 yards and 6 touchdowns in the win. 

Athlete of the Month - Cristian Buckley

Cristian Buckley

Buckley rushed for 104 yards on 17 carries in the loss to Bishop McDevitt. He scored a touchdown on a 36-yard run. 

Dawkins rushed for 85 yards on 14 carries in the loss to Bishop McDevitt. He scored a touchdown on a 10-yard run. 

The Bucks rallied from a two touchdown deficit in the first half, but fell short against Bishop McDevitt in the state playoff contest.

“We never wavered or drifted,” said coach McHale. “That’s been the story of our season.”

Dunmore, after an 0-2 start this season, had a late season surge en route to the district title.

Dunmore’s Dylan Aquino recovered a fumble on the opening kickoff of the state playoff contest, but the Bucks could not capitalize. 

The Bucks fumbled at the Royal Lancers 45 and then Corey Wright-Downing snared a 44-yard touchdown pass from University of Buffalo recruit Lonnie Rice with 6:47 left in the first quarter. The extra point kick was blocked.

Another Dunmore fumble led to Rice’s 22-yard touchdown strike to Ty Tindal. Dunmore’s David Reilly blocked the extra point kick attempt again and the Bucks were down, 12-0, with 8:39 left in the half.

Following five Dunmore runs, Buckley bolted through the right side and scored on a 36-yard run with 5:19 left in the half. Peyton Badyrka’s extra point kick attempt was wide and the Bucks were down, 12-6.

Buckley intercepted a Rice pass attempt giving the Bucks good field position on its 46. A few plays later, Badyrka attempted a 39-yard field goal that missed wide left after hitting the upright. 

bucksDunmore chopped over seven minutes off the clock with a strong running game in the third quarter. Dawkins capped the drive with a 10-yard touchdown run on fourth-and-two. Badyrka booted the extra point kick and the Bucks had a 13-12 lead with 4:54 left in the third quarter. 

Rice then directed a five-play, 67-yard drive after Dunmore almost recovered a botched kickoff. Rice’s six-yard touchdown burst was followed by Akire Lillie’s two-point conversion run with 3:02 left in the third quarter to give McDevitt a 20-13 lead.

The Bucks had a chance when Dom Temperino picked off a Rice screen pass and galloped 36 yards to the McDevitt 18. 

Dawkins ran the pigskin to the 12 and a face mask penalty put the Bucks at the three. But two false starts and a huge defensive play throwing by Division I recruit Tyrone Fowler throwing Buckley for a three yard loss hurt the drive. A fourth down incomplete pass completely stifled the drive. 

Rice took over and led the Lancers to a game clinching 87-yard drive. He scored on a 25-yard run with 5:04 left in the game. The Lancers quarterback then ran into the end zone for two more points and a 28-13 Bishop McDevitt lead.

Rice finished with 155 yards rushing and two touchdown runs in the contest. He also passed for 127 yards and two scores. 

“The effort was there and we never backed down,” coach McHale said.

He pointed to the team’s 0-2 start, but persevering to win the league and district titles. 

“That’s a super accomplishment.”

Holy Cross Girls Win Third Straight District Softball Title

Holy Cross Softball Team

Front row, from left: Gianna Sacchetti, Olivia Krupski and Olivia Zehel. Second row, same order: Kaitlyn Idhaw, Emma Clause, Mia Schimelfenig, Carly Wywoda, Meghan McDonnell, Meghan Nidoh, Priscilla Grill and Grace Murtagh. Third row: Autumn Miemiec, Tia Polizzi, Julia Goetz, Aleena Sandy, Jenna Bradley, Kaci Kranson, Keelin Schimelfenig, Allison Pavlowski and Erin McGee. Coaches are Joe Ross, Rev. Cyril Edwards, Brian Knoww, Dan McGee, Neil Hochreiter and Barry Fitzgerald.

By Steve Svetovich

Three is a charm.

Junior stalwart Jenna Bradley homered and fired a complete game five-hitter, striking out 11 and walking none and Carly Wywoda hit a three-run double as the Holy Cross Lady Crusaders earned a third straight District 2 title, 10-2, over Northwest Area Thursday, May 30, at the University of Scranton Magis Field.

The Lady Crusaders scored five runs in the first and never looked back with its ace pitcher on the mound. Bradley, who is committed to the University of Massachusetts for the fall of 2020, gave up only one earned run.

“This is just a great group of kids,” Holy Cross veteran softball coach Joe Ross said. “We are absolutely thrilled with the victory and the district title. The girls worked very hard for this. Now off to the state playoffs.”

Holy Cross freshman Kaci Kranson took a two-strike pitch and laced a triple to right-center to start the game. Olivia Krupski, always clutch, followed with a sacrifice fly.

An Erin McGee single came between walks to Bradley and Wywoda.

A Northwest throwing error, RBI fielder’s choice from Gianna Sacchetti, bases loaded walk to Kaitlin Idhaw and Olivia’s Zebel’s sacrifice fly gave the Lady Crusaders a 5-0 lead.

Bradley whacked her eighth homer of the year on the first pitch of the fourth inning. Idlaw doubled and Kranson drove in a run after another Northwest error.

With two outs and two strikes, Wywoda hit a three-run double down the right field line.

“She hit a two-strike pitch and went with it,” said Ross.

Kranson, McGee and Bradley all had two hits in the game. Bradley scored three runs and McGee scored two.

The win brought Holy Cross to a 17-5 record entering the state playoffs. Northwest fell to 14-9.

Holy Cross defeated Mountain View, 2-0, in the district semifinal win. Bradley hurled a complete game shutout, striking out 16.

Bradley has a 1.02 ERA with 283 strikeouts this season. She is hitting .540 with eight homers.

Kranson is batting over .400 with two homers. Krupski and Wywoda are both hitting over .350 with five homers each.

“It all starts with our pitching,” coach Ross said. “Jenna Bradley has been stellar all year and was again against Northwest.

“Kaci Kranson started us off with a great two-strike triple. And then she was driven in by a sac fly by Olivia Krupski. That was probably our best offensive performance. We were patient, hit the ball where it was pitched and were aggressive with our base running.

“We played good defense, strung together quality at bats. Combine that with excellent pitching and we are a tough team to beat.”

Undefeated Dunmore Lady Bucks Win Second Straight District Title


By Steve Svetovich

Victoria Toomey, Moriah Murray and Lisa Tallo combined for 26 of Dunmore’s points as the Lady Bucks defeated Holy Redeemer, 33-27, to win its second straight Class AAA District 2 championship Saturday, March 2, at Mohegan Sun Arena.

Freshman stalwart Murray and the multi talented Tallo hit clinching free throws in the final 37 seconds to clinch the title win for the Lady Bucks coached by veteran Ben O’Brien.

It was undefeated Dunmore’s 25th consecutive win.

Alexis Chapman made a huge defensive play at mid court late in the fourth quarter that led to Tallo making a nice pass to Murray for a clutch 3-pointer from the left wing with 3:07 left in the contest.

Chapman hustled on the play as she deflected the ball before chasing it down.

It may have been the defensive play of the season for the Lady Bucks.

Chapman was also clutch on offense hitting a big 3-pointer to help Dunmore to its biggest advantage, 23-18, midway through the third quarter.

Cameron Marchinkowski hit a 3-pointer for Holy Redeemer to tie the game, 26-26, with 4:17 left in the contest.

After the Lady Bucks (25-0) missed a shot, Holy Redeemer (21-4) looked to take the lead before Chapman came through with her defensive gem that led to Murray’s 3-pointer.

Holy Redeemer had another shot, but missed three of four free throws before Murray hit two with 37.2 seconds remaining.

Tallo added two more free throws with 15 seconds left.

Standout senior center-forward Victoria Toomey, last season’s Player of the Year, and Murray led the Lady Bucks with nine points each in the district title win. Tallo added eight points, four assists and four steals. Gianna Delfino scored four points.

Delfino, an all around talent, had nine rebounds to lead the Lady Bucks. Toomey added eight more rebounds.

Another highlight in the contest came at the conclusion of the first quarter when Tallo, who seems to do it all, took an inbounds pass at three-quarter court, went behind her back at the key and hit on a running 17-foot shot.

The Lady Bucks easily defeated No. 4 seed Wyoming Seminary, 57-19, in the semifinal contest Saturday, February 23, at Marywood University.

Freshman phenom Murray led the Lady Bucks with 20 points and added three assists in the semifinal win.

Toomey, who will play basketball at Rider University next year, and Tallo scored 10 points each.

Toomey, the ultimate team leader, added six rebounds, five assists and five steals.

Alex Wesneski led Wyoming Seminary (15-10) with eight points.

The Lady Bucks now play a first round PIAA state playoff game against Constitution, the fourth seed from District 12, Friday, March 8.