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Falcon boys split games, stand at 6-4 on season

The Lower Dauphin boys basketball team split a pair of games last week and stand at 6-4 overall and 3-3 in the Mid-Penn Conference Keystone Division.

The team played host to Palmyra on Tuesday, Jan. 10, and will welcome Red Land at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Jan. 13 before traveling to Hershey at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday.


Lower Dauphin 63, Cedar Cliff 55

Brady Wilson scored 19, including two three-pointers, and Will Bowen added 12 in the road win on Tuesday, Jan. 3.

Jackson Becher scored 10.

A 21-10 edge in the second quarter was the difference in the game.


Mechanicsburg 39,  Lower Dauphin 32

Lower Dauphin scored 16 points in the first three quarters combined and then exploded for 16 in the fourth quarter alone, but it wasn’t enough to beat the homestanding Mechanicsburg squad.

The Falcons shut out Mechanicsburg in the third quarter but scored only five points themselves. 

Mechanicsburg had 20 points for the game going into the fourth quarter, but scored 19 in the fourth to seal the win.

Brady Wilson had 15 for Lower Dauphin. 

Will Bowen added eight.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 10 January 2017 16:00

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LD girls beat Mechanicsburg, fall to Cedar Cliff

The Lower Dauphin girls basketball team split two games last week and have a record of 8-3 on the season and 5-1 in the Mid-Penn Conference Keystone Division.

The Falcons lost to visiting Cedar Cliff on Tuesday, Jan. 3. The home team outscored the visitors 9-2 in the first quarter but only scored 12 points in the second half to 26 for Cedar Cliff.

Amber Schweiger had 14 for Lower Dauphin. 

Lower Dauphin beat Mechanicsburg 35-24 on Friday, Jan. 6.

Amber Schweiger led the way again with 13 points for Lower Dauphin. Paulina Malinen added 11.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 10 January 2017 15:58

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Blue Raiders boys basketball win own tourney, hit 5-0

By winning their own holiday tournament on Wednesday night, the Middletown boys ran their unbeaten record to 5-0, off to a great start as they headed into the new year. 

After topping Susquehannock 67-48 on Tuesday, the Blue Raiders followed with a hard-fought 67-56 victory over a good Lampeter-Strasburg team the following night in the tournament championship clash.

1N6A7740Ryan Hughes fights for position vs. Lampeter-Strasburg.


Tourney MVP Ryan Hughes scored 17 points and teammate Tyreer Mills, who made the all-tournament team, added 14 to lead the Raiders. 

Chris Plummer and Luke Mrakovich teamed for another 25 points.

All-tournament selections also included Jack Banner and Ryan Smith from Lampeter-Strasburg, Ryan McGill from Northern York and Chase Summers from Susquehannock. Northern defeated Susquehannock in the consolation game. 


Middletown 67, Susquehannock 48

The Blue Raiders did not look exceptionally sharp in the nightcap of the tournament’s opening night, but did enough to pull away from the Warriors late in the second quarter and early in the third. 

3M1A4092Luke Mrakovich fires away.


Hughes, Luke Mrakovich and Mills teamed for 36 points to lead the scoring and the defense forced 25 turnovers against the Warriors in the triumph. The Raiders, too, had their share of miscues with 16, and missed numerous shots on offense, but still had enough game to overpower their guests. 

Led by Mills’ 7 points, the Blue Raiders pushed their way to a 16-10 lead by the end of the first period. The Warriors struggled with the ball but managed to pull to within a basket, 12-10, with 1:02 left in the opening segment. But Mills turned a Plummer assist into a goal with 45 seconds left and Plummer converted his own steal into a layup at 0:21 to give the Raiders the 16-10 edge. 

The Warriors, however, made it a 16-15 game, getting a three-pointer from Hunter Sentz and a bucket from Summers off a Raider turnover to open the second quarter. Subs Kobe Sprecher and David Alcock answered scores by the Warriors to keep the Raiders ahead before Summers again made it a one-point game, 20-19, with 4:47 left in the first half. 

3M1A4159Tyreer Mills heads to the hoop vs. Lampeter-Strasburg.



The Blue Raiders then strung together seven straight points by Hughes and Mrakovich to stretch the lead to 8. Following a pair of missed free throws by the Warriors, Mrakovich and Kyle Truesdale stretched the lead to 31-19 with 2:31 left. 

A pair of late goals by Susquehannock’s Jordan McMillon kept the Warriors within reach, but Mrakovich sank two foul shots with 20 seconds left to give the Raiders a 39-25 halftime cushion. 

 Middletown’s pressure defense held the Warriors to just 5 points in the third quarter while the offense collected 14 joint points from Tre Leach, Hughes, Plummer and Truesdale on its way to a comfortable 53-30 lead heading into the final frame. By opening up the fourth quarter with a 10-4 scoring advantage that led to a 63-34 lead, the Blue Raiders were able to coast to the 67-48 victory. 


Middletown 67, Lampeter-Strasburg 56

 The report on the Pioneers read that they were a good shooting team, and that turned out to be true. 

3M1A4048Christian Plummer goes up for a shot vs. Lampeter-Strasburg.


In all, Lampeter-Strasburg made 9 three-pointers, more than enough to keep the Pioneers right in contention until the final minute. In a saving effort, however, Hughes and Leach made 10-of-10 free throws in the last 1:28 to ice the tension-filled contest that decided the tournament championship.

Hughes and Lampeter-Strasburg’s Smith matched high-scoring honors with 17 points each in the game while Mills, Plummer and Mrakovich combined for 39 points to pace the winning side. 

The Pioneers were hurt when leading player Ben Sandberg was ejected with 1:48 to go in the first period after drawing a double technical foul. Raider coach Chris Sattele readily noted after the game that his loss made a difference for Lampeter-Strasburg. 

Sandberg actually got the Pioneers off to a quick start and an early 2-0 lead before Hughes converted a Plummer assist into the tying points at 6:50. But the Pioneers went back to back for a 6-2 lead at the 5:38 mark. 

At that point, the Middletown fans knew that their team was in for a tough fight. After an exchange of baskets, the Raiders slipped into the lead a 9-8 on a triple by Mills and a goal by Plummer. Lampeter-Strasburg went back in front on a pair of free throws by Smith at 2:21, but Plummer scored again from the low post to push the Raiders back into the lead. 

Following a Lampeter-Strasburg miss, Sandberg drew his third personal foul at 1:48 and his vocal protest drew a technical foul. As he stormed to the bench, another outburst drew a second technical foul and his ejection from the game. Hughes made 3-of-4 foul shots to give the Raiders a 14-10 advantage, which grew to 16-10 on back-to-back goals by Truesdale and Hughes as the first quarter ended. 

Smith showed why he was voted onto the all-tourney team as he put back a rebound to start the second stanza and then converted a Middletown turnover into a three-pointer that pulled the Pioneers right back into contention at 18-15 at 7:20. 

image018Tre Leach drives toward the basket vs. Lampeter-Strasburg on Wednesday, Dec. 28.


But Mills swished his second trey of the game and Plummer scored on a short jumper following a Lampeter-Strasburg miss to give the Raiders some room at 24-15. Later in the period, with the Pioneers trailing 27-19, Banner and Jared Brown hit back-to-back treys, and Brown added a foul shot that cut the Raiders’ lead to a single point, 27-26, adding to the tension in the Middletown gym. 

Mrakovich’s clutch three at 1:42 and Mills’ third triple of the game at 1:08 kept the Raiders in front with a 33-28 edge. Another trey by Banner sliced the gap to two, but Sprecher’s putback with 8 seconds left allowed the Raiders to take a 35-31 lead into the locker room at halftime. 

The Blue Raiders got off to a good start in the second half when Leach scored off an offensive rebound and then had another bucket off a defensive rebound and assist by Hughes a minute later. Smith’s trey cut into the lead at 5:59, but Mrakovich scored a triple and Mills converted a Lampeter-Strasburg turnover into a bucket and a 42-34 Middletown lead with 5:03 left in the third quarter. 

Later in the period, Mrakovich’s pullup jumper gave the Raiders a 48-38 lead but Chase Broderick nailed yet another Pioneer trey to close the gap to 48-41 heading into the final frame. 

Mills’ fourth triple of the game came at the 6:37 mark of the fourth quarter after both teams had struggled to take charge early on. The key basket gave the Blue Raiders a 51-41 lead and it appeared as if the home team was going to finally gain some distance from their guests. But Lampeter-Strasburg simply would not give in and the Pioneers scored the game’s next eight points to quickly make it a 51-49 score. A pair of treys by Jared Houck, the second one coming with 3:40 left, did most of the damage. 

Mrakovich broke the string with a pair of free throws at 3:29 and Michael Mattes made one of two following a Pioneer turnover a minute later after Sattele called a timeout at 2:54. 

A big defensive rebound by Mills 20 seconds later led to another timeout by the Middletown coach. At 2:13, Plummer made the first of a one-and-one to expand the Raiders’ lead to 55-49. The Pioneers hurt themselves with another turnover that Plummer converted into a layup and an eight-point advantage for the Middletown team. 

Banner’s trey broke the scoreless drought for the Pioneers at 1:30 and, from that point on, Lampeter-Strasburg was forced to foul, trailing by five points. Hughes made both of his shots with 1:28 left and Lampeter-Strasburg answered with a bucket by Peyton Denlinger just six seconds later. 

With 1:18 to go, Leach stepped to the free throw line and dropped in both shots to keep the Raiders ahead by seven points. Houck scored with 1:06 left but they turned out to be Lampeter-Strasburg’s final points of the game. Hughes locked up the victory by sinking 6-of-6 foul shots in the final minute, giving the Blue Raiders the tournament trophy. 

The Blue Raiders played host to Camp Hill on Tuesday. They will play at Trinity at 7:30 p.m. Friday, then play host to West Perry at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 10.






Last Updated on Wednesday, 04 January 2017 15:04

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Blue Raiders senior Bianca Jasper reaches 1,000 points

image006Bianca Jasper celebrates her 1,000th point with her aunt, Elaine Nester, left, and mom, Tonya Jasper, right.


The Middletown girls basketball team continued to have trouble scoring in the last week, winning one game but dropping two.

They stand at 3-6 on the season and 1-1 in the Mid-Penn Conference Capital Division.

Lower Dauphin dominated the Blue Raiders on Friday, Dec. 30, winning 39-13 and holding Middletown scoreless in the first and fourth quarters. The Falcons scored 12 in the first quarter, nearly enough for the win by itself. Middletown scored 10 in the second quarter but only three in the third.

 MG 8293Bianca Jasper scores her 1,000th point vs. Lower Dauphin on Friday, Dec. 30.


The highlight, however, was the 1,000th career point scored for Bianca Jasper, the Middletown senior guard who will play next year for California (Pa.). She averaged almost 16.7 points as a junior, 13.8 as a sophomore, and 7.8 as a freshman. She is averaging about 17 a game this year. Makaila Nester led Middletown with 4 points. Kate Fitzpatrick and Jasper added 3.

Amber Schweiger had 13 for Lower Dauphin and Grace Day scored 12.

Middletown also struggled to score Wednesday, Dec. 28 vs. Lampeter-Strasburg, losing 46-31 in the Hershey Holiday Tournament finals. The Blue Raiders scored only eight points in the first half.

image005Middletown’s Katie Fitzpatrick drives to the basket against Lower Dauphin.


Jasper had 17 for Middletown and Fitzpatrick added 6.

Against Hershey in the first round Tuesday, Dec. 27, however, the Blue Raiders had their best offensive output on the season, winning 64-55.

Jasper scored 18, Nester had 14 and Fitzpatrick and Jaelynn Keller each had 12. Middletown made nine three-pointers.

They will play at Camp Hill at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday before playing host to Donegal at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday and Trinity at 7:30 p.m. Friday. They travel to West Perry at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 10.


image008Head coach Ron Stetler and Jasper mark the occasion.


image003Makaila Nester looks to setup the play against Lower Dauphin.


image002Fans celebrate the 1,000th career point of Middletown’s Bianca Jasper, against Lower Dauphin on Dec. 30.


image004Fans celebrate the 1,000th career point of Middletown’s Bianca Jasper, against Lower Dauphin on Dec. 30.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 04 January 2017 17:02

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Wrestlers take part in holiday tournament

The Blue Raider wrestling team took 10 to the Governor Mifflin Holiday Tournament on Dec. 29-30. 

The tournament featured 21 teams from Pennsylvania, Virginia and North Carolina. The Raiders came out strong, winning matches at the first six weight classes and setting the tone for the two-day tournament. 

Logan1Logan Stoltzfus registered a first-period pin over Alex Caballero (Pottstown) in the Governor Mifflin Holiday Tournament.


Middletown finished 12th with 80.50 points. 

Although they suffered some difficult loses at the heavy weights, the Blue Raiders would advance all five light weights to Day 2. 

At 106 pounds, freshman Luke Fegley went 4-1 to place third overall. Fegley defeated Ezra Toll (Conestoga) 4-0 and Micah DeLattre (Moshannon Valley) 12-2 before falling to Matthew Rodriquez (Dover) 11-7. Fegley bounced back with wins over Meraj Khan (Upper Darby) and a 4-2 overtime win against Owen Rohrer (Penn Manor) to take third.

At 113 pounds, sophomore Ryan Berstler also scored four wins to place fifth. Berstler started off with a 9-6 win over Nazmul Islam (Upper Darby), but got caught for a loss against Governor Mifflin’s Jalon Lavine. Berstler responded by winning three out of his last four matches, pinning Carter McDonald (Dallastown) in 48 seconds and defeating Jacob Matchock (Moshannon Valley) 5-0. Berstler placed fifth with a 14-2 major decision over Nicholas Fasig (Oley Valley).

MasonMason Stoltzfus vs Klint Harpel from Brandywine Heights


At 120 pounds, freshman Mason Stoltzfus registered a fourth-place finish. The younger Stoltzfus brother amassed four exciting wins; including a 35-second pin over Charles Mojica (Upper Darby), and wins over Klint Harpel (Brandywine Heights), Mason Lewis (Dover) and Joe Ball (Moshannon Valley). Stoltzfus’s two losses during the tournament would both come at the hands of senior Jordan Harsh (Penn Manor), including a tough 1-0 loss to finish in fourth place.

At 126 pounds, senior Logan Stoltzfus amassed five wins over two days for a third-place finish. 

The older Stoltzfus brother started with a decisive first-period pin over Alex Caballero (Pottstown) before suffering a close 9-7 loss against Kyle Seibert (Governor Mifflin). Stoltzfus rallied back strong, winning four straight matches, including a technical fall 18-2 over Hempfield’s Tyler Buthdy, and wins over Jake Caskie (Brandywine Heights) and Nick Fafel (Penn Manor). Stoltzfus would avenge an earlier loss by defeating Kyle Seibert 4-3 for third place. 

At 132 pounds, sophomore Nate Brady would top off a strong showing by the Blue Raider light weights, collecting four wins in route to a fifth place finish. Brady started off with a 17-5 major decision over Hunter Failor (Dover), but fell in a close 3-0 loss to Thomas Reif (Upper Darby). Brady would win three of his last four matches including another major decision 13-4 victory over Payton Gonsalez (Wyomissing).

Spear1Joey Spear vs Gus Natelli from Neshaminy (Spear won 8-4).


Also representing the Blue Raiders at the tournament were freshman Joey Spear (145), who captured his first two varsity wins, seniors Abel Botterbusch (152) and Wyatt Smith (160), junior Hunter Magaro (170), and freshman Quincy Reinnagel (220).

The team is scheduled to wrestle Lower Dauphin on Wednesday and Trinity on Thursday this week.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 04 January 2017 14:07

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