For the second year in a row, Greenwood will be the last school in our area playing in the winter sports season.
The Wildcat boys, who made a run deep into the Class A state bracket a year ago, are joined this time by the girls in the second round. The girls bowed out in their opener in 2009.
And here's an oddity: Both teams are facing the same school - Old Forge, from District 2 (Scranton/Wilkes-Barre area) in their second games. The same site will host both games, which will take place in the Whitey McCloskey Center at Danville Area High School.
Logically, you'd overlook the fact that boys and girls in that class are scheduled to play on different nights and set up a doubleheader, right?
Wrong - the folks from Millerstown, and their northeast counterparts, will have to travel to Montour County twice this week, with the boys playing tonight and the girls Wednesday.
In the age of economic squeeze and green living, this is just plain stupid. Think of it like this: If each team brings a mere 150 fans, and those fans average three per car, that will be a total of 11,500 road miles expended by the fans of both schools over the two nights.
Not only is that twice the pollution, but it's twice the cost for the fans - if you figure a generous average of 25 miles per gallon, that's more than $1,300 the fans will spend on gas to get to the games.
I'm guessing the PIAA sees it another way: If they allow the teams to play together, that's half the revenue at the gate. Maybe they should play the double, and just raise the admission fee that night. Or, clear the gym between games - if they can clear 7,000 wrestling fans out of Giant Center between sessions, they can empty a high school without breaking a sweat, and charge separately for each game.
Speaking of wrestling: Another annual mistake the PIAA makes is the impossible schedule for the final day of the state wrestling tournament.
The morning session - Class AAA semifinals and two rounds of consolations - ran over, forcing a late start for the Class AA medal round, which in turn led to a late start for the Class AAA medal rounds. Pity the poor fan who's waiting for the 285-pound match in Triple-A.
I can think of a handful of possible fixes ... none of them likely to be implemented.
More wrestling notes:
Because of the late hour that wrestling was completed, the names of the Class AAA Coach of the Year and Outstanding Wrestler were not included in our coverage of that meet, which ended locally when Colton Spade competed in the consolation finals.
Just as Benton dominated the small-school event, it was all Central Mountain in Class AAA. Doug Buckwalter won coaching honors, the team had the highest point total and Andrew Alton was the OW - an interesting vote, since twin brother Dylan and Central Dauphin's Marshall Peppelman each won their third title Saturday, while Andrew "only" got his second.
Overall, District 4 was a dominant force in Class AA, with eight finalists and three champs. The WPIAL (District 7) was the top district in Class AAA, with three winners out of six in the finals.
On wrestler earned his second gold medal this school year in the tournament - Selinsgrove's Spencer Myers, who was a standout on the football team that won it all in December.
Myers, Peppelman and the Altons all are scheduled to appear in the Dapper Dan Classic Saturday in Pittsburgh, one of the largest all-star wrestling events of its kind - think of it as the Big 33 of the sport.
Districts 3 and 11 are squaring off in an all-star challenge tonight at Wilson High in West Lawn, scene of the Class AA Southeast regional. Based on the outcome of their respective district meets, organizers somehow failed to include anyone from Juniata in what is expected to be the final year for the Indians in District 3.
If you missed the state tournament, or just want another look, PCN plans to rebroadcast the individual and team events April 3-4. All eight basketball title games will be carried live on the channel, as will this weekend's state swimming and diving championships, with several reruns on those as well.
Of course, you won't be able to see them if you're not a cable subscriber - the channel is not available on DirecTV or Dish Network, which PCN and the satellite companies continue to insist is the other guy's fault.
Jeff Fishbein is sports editor of The Sentinel. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.