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Neumann News

[Editor’s Note: The following articles are from Neumann News, the newspaper club at St. John Neumann Regional Academy. The goal of Neumann News is, “to inform SJNRA families and students of the school on a variety of different topics including: news, events, sports, opinion, entertainment, and outside current events through the varying perspectives of Neumann students.” ~Steph]

Neumann Pride is Undefeated
By John Brann, Editor
Neumann News

Neumann pride was on full display Thursday [March 24] as the school celebrated the many achievements the basketball team has had leading up to the final game. Despite the Knight’s 64 to 47 loss Thursday at the Giant Center, in Hershey, the school rallied around the young men and the school spirit they’ve brought to life this year.

The boys were welcomed into the gym for a final celebration before the school send-off to Hershey. “When our players were kids, they began their love for the game of basketball. A love that was instilled in them by their fathers, brothers, uncles, friends, and coaches,” said Shawn Moore, Director of Religious Formation at Neumann. “Countless hours of practice — wins and losses, hundreds of miles logged journeying from school to school, they learned what it meant to be competitive athletes. They learned that no one was going to hand them a win, rather they would have to earn every victory.” Moore’s statements struck a chord with the crowd as they were a reminder of just how historic this season was for Neumann.

Most of Thursday’s speakers emphasized how this was a once-in-a-lifetime team and how they’ve cemented their impact into the school’s history, regardless of the result of the final game. This team has one thing that sets them apart from the others — love for the game and each other. “When you get a group of men together like this, a group that loves one another, that plays for one another — that is something that only the very best teams can accomplish,” Moore said. Every time they went on the court, they played for one another.

Neumann’s mission going into this challenge was made clear by head baseball coach Cory Burkholder. “We are faithful and powered by faith,” he said. “Remember that is what you all represent here. You are your brother’s keepers in this mission.”

The atmosphere before the game was intense as the school traveled in large numbers to Hershey. Long lines of Neumann fans crowded the front of the arena as they waited for the boys’ game to begin. To the players, this was a breathtaking experience being in front of so many eyes both in person and at home. Many of the speakers Thursday reminded the players to savor every moment and make the most of every second to carry as memories. They did.

“I am proud that you’ve used the gifts you’ve been given to overcome challenges and adversity in a way that sets you apart over and above so many others,” Bishop Joseph C. Bambera said.

Knights Celebrate Wins On and Off the Court
By John Brann, Editor
Neumann News

Students and faculty from both campuses and speakers close to the Neumann community crowded the gym last Friday to give the Neumann boys an energetic send-off before their 82 to 62 win over Nativity in the PIAA Class A semi-finals.

Principal McNamee welcomed the crowd, excited to be celebrating Neumann successes after a difficult few school years, which have impacted the everyone in some way across the nation. “It’s great to see everyone here supporting our team after 2 years of difficulties,” McNamee said. “The entire community is behind you all.” Principal McNamee said the recent season of both boys and girls were important reminders that Neumann sports and academics are closely related and equal examples of how the Neumann community continues to excel. She honored all junior and senior high students who made honor roll so far this year by asking them to stand.

Boys head coach, Jamie Spencer, wanted to thank the community for showing their support for both the boys and girls’ team throughout the season. Spencer highlighted specific moments he remembered from the season where the girl’s team had been here to support the boys throughout their season, even as early as their first scrimmages. “Experiences like this have been what’s continuously pushed our boys to get this far,” Spencer said. “And we’re not done yet.”

Accomplished athlete, coach, and educator close to the Neumann community, Marilouise “Maz” Mazzante, shared many wise words directed at the team and the students sitting behind them. “This is an opportunity in front of you that you might only have once in your life,” Maz said. “Now is your time to claim it.”

Head baseball coach, Cory Burkholder, spoke about how important academics are to the athletes who go to this school. “All these boys sitting here stood to be honored today,” Burkholder said. Fathers Bechtel and Kozen closed the afternoon with a prayer.

On Thursday, the boys will be going up against Pittsburgh’s Bishop Canevin in Hershey for the title. Students were reminded on morning announcements Tuesday that it has been 50 years since anything like this has happened for Neumann basketball.

Press Release