Susan Bossler (right) is averaging a team-high 14.1 points for Pope John Paul II.
Susan Bossler (right) is averaging a team-high 14.1 points for Pope John Paul II. (A Hoff)

Susan Bossler's basketball lineage is a veritable pedigree of point-scoring.

Her father, Bryan, was a standout at Exeter High who played collegiately at Alvernia, where he graduated as the Crusaders' career scoring king with 2,278 career points.

Her mother, Jill (Zuber) Bossler (currently a guidance counselor at Pottsgrove), was simply one of the best female players in Berks County history, accumulating 1,243 career points at Daniel Boone before matriculating to Millersville, where she was an All-PSAC East first team pick and team MVP as a senior.

Suffice it to say those are big shoes to fill.

"The standards are definitely high,' said Bossler, a junior guard at Pope John Paul II. "I try to work hard and try to listen really hard to what they have to say, because they're both knowledgeable about the game. And I don't want to let them down because they were so successful.'

Bossler needn't worry about letting anybody down after the boost she's provided to the Golden Panthers' rotation after transferring from Berks Catholic in the offseason. She's averaging a team-high 14.1 points and has knocked down an area-best 19 3-pointers for the Frontier Division-leading Golden Panthers (3-0, 8-1), whose lone loss thus far was to perennial District 1-AAAA and PIAA power Mount St. Joseph Academy.


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"She's probably the purest shooter I've ever coached,' PJP coach Dave Baker said. "She's got a quick release, and just a natural stroke. And she knows the game; she's smart.'

Bossler didn't take long to make her presence felt, going off for 23 points in the second game of the year, a 67-62 win over Southern Lehigh in the Hazleton Tip-Off Tournament championship. She has connected on 26 of 31 foul shots, and also has 18 assists and nine steals on the year in providing a potent offensive punch to an already-formidable rotation that includes veterans Ellen Chernaskey, Lauren Dao, Jenna Widdicombe and Gabby Troisi.

"The word's out on her,' Baker said. "Other teams realize the girl can shoot, and they have to go out and play her, so it opens things up for Ellen and Gabby, and they love it.'

For her part, Bossler loves the way she's made a smooth transition to the more halfcourt-oriented Berks Catholic style to the wide-open PJP attack, as well as the way the Golden Panthers have welcomed her with open arms.

"The coaching staff and teammates have been amazing,' she said. "I'm just so happy to be here. We have great chemistry, and that's important.'

Bossler's first basketball memories are from when she was 5 years old shooting with her dad out in the family's driveway.

She said she became aware of her parents' impressive roundball résumés "probably when I got to junior high.'

And these days, Bossler would love nothing better than to continue the family legacy while helping the Golden Panthers crash the Pioneer Athletic Conference and District 1-AAA elite.

"We're all working so hard, and we're so excited,' she said.

AROUND THE AREA

After taking over the No. 1 spot in the PennLive.com Class AAAA state rankings, Spring-Ford (8-1) returned from a 14-day layoff with an impressive 44-40 victory over Long Island (N.Y.) Lutheran, with senior forward Shelby Mueller scoring a team-high 15 point, senior guard Sammy Stipa and junior forward Maggie Locke coming up big down the stretch, and sophomores Emily Walker and Amy Roth also making clutch contributions ... Methacton, which is ranked as an honorable mention Class AAAA team by PennLive.com, improved to 7-3 with a 71-17 rout of Mastery Charter Saturday, with Kelly Glatthorn delivering a game-high 20 points. Sydney Thompson recorded her first points of the season in the victory. ... Pottstown snapped a season-opening eight-game losing streak by edging Quakertown 29-27 Saturday. ... Despite its record, Perkiomen Valley continues to see an impressive effort from Katie Armstrong. Armstrong is fourth in the PAC-10 in scoring and has scored in double figures nine out of 10 games. ... Bossler recorded her seventh game with more than two 3-pointers in the team's victory over Lansdale Catholic. ... Perkiomen School leads the area in points against, allowing 28.5 points per game.

THE WEEK AHEAD

Defending PIAA-AAAA champion Spring-Ford takes on traditional power Mount St. Joseph Academy in a high-profile Scholastic Play-By-Play Classic showdown Saturday at Philadelphia University.

Perkiomen School gets back to business after the holiday break, first taking on Renaissance Academy in a road contest Wednesday and then playing host to Collegium Charter at home Friday.

In other key games, Pope John Paul II visits Methacton Wednesday in a rematch of last year's PAC-10 semifinal, and Boyertown travels to Upper Perkiomen in crossover action Thursday.