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Nazareth, Pa., United States

Monday, July 31, 2017

HS Boys' Basketball - Beca Wins Allentown Summer League 'Ship

Bethlehem Catholic, Summer League Champs
Hats off to Bethlehem Catholic's Golden Hawks Boys Varsity Basketball team. This talented squad defeated Allentown Central Catholic on Friday night under threatening skies to win the Allentown Summer League Championship, 44-21. These two schools participate in the "Big School" division of summer league that includes 18 area high schools. Another 12 schools play in the "Small School" division.

During the summer league season, Central beat Beca in their one and only confrontation Beca standout Ryan Young was nursing a sore ankle. But he was ready to play Friday. A shellshocked Central was down 10-0 before it knew what had happened. Though the team did finally start scoring, the Vikings had a 23-point deficit at the half.

Most teams would stay down after that thrashing. But the Vikings, who have come from behind several times this Summer, clawed their way back on Friday night and were three points away as the clock ticked. They ran out of time.

Keeshawn "the Beast" Kelman (Central) and Ryan Young (Beca) fought under the boards. Though I did not score this game, these giants almost certainly led their respective teams in scoring.

Both of these seniors are getting a lot of attention from colleges, but Ryan's "little" brother Kyle is going to be aneven bigger surprise. He's nearly as tall as his brother and is murder from both downtown and under the boards. Beca's third big man is Caden Giordano, who has developed very well over the Summer.

Allentown Central Catholic Vikings
Central will return with seniors Jay Vaughan, Dat Lambert, Jordan McChristian, Keyshawn Kelman and Kevin Kern. Like Beca, there is a lot of depth provided by Sammy "the Ice Man" Vaughan (Jay's brother), Chad Kratzer, Nick Filchner and Jayden Walsh.  

These two teams will certainly be at the top of the East Penn Conference and will meet again during the regular season.

Though Allen High School had nothing to do with this game, Coaches Ray Barbosa (Beca) and Dennis Csensits are both Allen grads.

These games would never happen without the tireless efforts of League Commissioner Glen Klein. He even persuaded The Morning Call's Keith Groller, who has kept the Lehigh Valley better informed about high school basketball than anyone I know, to hand out the trophies.  

Though both Beca and Central are both Catholic schools, they pretty much hate each other, no matter what sport. The games can be very physical. But I had to laugh at what happened when Central's frustrated Dat Lambert got swatted to the macadam by the Young wall in a failed attempt to take it to the hole.

As the game continued, Ryan stooped down and helped Dat to his feet.


I told Ryan I would have stepped on him.

Dat scraped up his left knee on Thursday against Allen and actually had to be pulled out of the game when the ref noticed the bleeding. Friday night, the right knee got road rash.

A matching pair.

On Saturday, he was back on the court.

I'd bet they all were.

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