We're three weeks into the spring sports season and the action is heating up. The weather forecast looks sunny and warm for most of the next week, so here are some key games for YAIAA fans to get out and see:
New Oxford at York Catholic, 4:15 p.m. Tuesday: Two of the three remaining undefeated girls' lacrosse teams square off Tuesday. The Colonials are the up-and-coming team, having never won more than nine games in a season. But they're already off to a 6-0 start this season behind Braxtin Reddinger, who leads the league in goals and assists. The Irish are the mainstay and perennial powerhouse with a strong defense and balanced scoring attack. Can they fend off the upstart Colonials?
Central York at York Suburban, 7 p.m. Tuesday: These two teams have exceeded expectations early in the season and find themselves in the thick of the league race. The Panthers already boast key wins over Dallastown and Susquehannock and have averaged 17 goals in their wins this season. With their high-scoring duo of Collin Mailman and Mike Sipes, the Trojans can also score in bunches. They've tallied at least 13 goals in each game this season.
Susquehannock at West York, 4:15 p.m. Thursday: In a rematch of last season's YAIAA title game, Susquehannock and West York square off Thursday afternoon. These two teams are no strangers, having split eight games evenly over the last four years. Despite losing several key pieces on offense, the Bulldogs are off to a better start in 2016. They held off York Catholic in overtime and outscored their first three opponents, 51-14. The Warriors were expected to take a step forward this season but have stumbled out of the gate, with losses to Central and York Catholic. Can they regain their footing against their old rival?
Dallastown at Spring Grove, 4:15 p.m. Tuesday: These two teams sit atop YAIAA Division I with 4-0 division records. For Dallastown (4-1, 4-0), its impressive, early-season resume includes wins against Penn Manor, Susquehannock, West York and Dover. Riley Hamberger, who leads the league in strikeouts, is coming off a no-hitter against South Western last week. The Rockets (4-2, 4-0 YAIAA Division I) boast a solid starting pitcher of their own, Matt Brooks, who is second in strikeouts behind Hamberger.
Dallastown at Red Lion, 4:15 p.m. Thursday: Talk about a tough schedule for Dallastown. The Wildcats get both of their top divisional competitors on the road in a span of three days. Red Lion is off to a 3-0 start and a win against rival Dallastown could vault them higher in the divisional race.
Susquehannock at Eastern York, 4:15 p.m. Monday: These teams are a combined 7-1. The Warriors have been arguably the most impressive team in the league, having already knocked off fellow powerhouses Dallastown and Delone Catholic by a combined 14-4 score. In all, Susquehannock has won each game by an average of six runs. Eastern has had an easier schedule but get a golden opportunity to earn a statement win.
York Suburban at Red Lion, 7:30 p.m. Tuesday: These are two undefeated teams and the two likeliest threats to Northeastern's supremacy if there are any. Red Lion is led by Cole Brillhart, who is among the league leaders in kills, and John Longnecker, who racked up 60 assists in the first three games. The Trojans also have one of the best setters in the league, Kaleb Ansell, and a strong hitting combo in Sepehr Vakili and Jack Shultz. Note: You can watch this game live at GameTimePA.com.
York Suburban at Northeastern, 7:15 p.m. Thursday: Depending on how the Trojans' matchup with Red Lion goes, this could potentially be a battle of the only two undefeated YAIAA teams. The Trojans get their shot at knocking off Northeastern. But the three-time defending state champion Bobcats are already in championship form, evidenced by the 3-0 win over Saegertown and 2-0 win over defending AAA champ Parkland.
Koller Classic, 8 a.m. Saturday at Central York: It's Central's turn to host some of the state's best volleyball teams, just two weeks after Northeastern held its Bobcat Invitational. The Koller Classic's 20-team lineup includes the defending state champions Parkland (Class AAA) and Northeastern (Class AA), along with seven other teams ranked in the two state top-10 lists: Parkland, Ambridge, Pennsbury, York Suburban, Cambridge Springs, Hempfield and North Allegheny. For its part, Central holds the No. 4 spot in Class AAA. YAIAA foe Dallastown also will join the Koller competition.
Track and Field
Arctic Blast, 10 a.m. Saturday at Northern York: Bermudian Springs, Delone Catholic, Fairfield, Gettysburg, Littlestown, South Western and York Suburban will join many other regional schools at Northern York for an all-day event. It's one of the biggest regular season events for YAIAA teams.