by Karen Sangillo
The Langhorne Spiders fifth grade girls basketball team are celebrating a season to remember.
The year culminated in a trip to the Pennsylvania Middle School championship game, held March 20th at Penn State. There, the Spiders fell to the Bustleton Bengals by three points, 23-20.
En route to the title game, the Spiders defeated Pine Richmond, 20-7, overcame an 11-point deficit to beat South Fayette, 28-25 and topped Springford, 26-23, in a game that featured big free throws in the last minute for a comeback win.
Nicole Trespalacios, Falyn Savage and Brynn Klukososki were the leading scorers for the Spiders in the tournament.
The team qualified for the state tourney by winning the Charger Nation Winter League championship with a 10-0 record in 2021.
It was the second year in a row that the Spiders won this championship, as they also went 10-0 in 2020.
The Spiders also won the King of the Court Tournament with a 4-0 record at the beginning of the season for good measure.
This was the second consecutive year that the Spiders were invited to the state tournament.
Coach Jason Trespalacios has coached the girls for three years.
“Our first year at States we didn’t do so well,” he said. “But it was a good experience for the girls and we came back this year and the girls were more comfortable.
“There were two games where we came back in the last four minutes to win. We were losing to Springford with two minutes to go and we were able to win.
“Throughout the whole thing, we had a whole lot of fun and we played competitive games. We just ran out of luck at the end and as luck would have it, we went all the way to Penn State to lose to a team that’s right around the corner from us.”
The team’s record in the Inter-County Basketball Association Division I in 2021 was 8-4, and they went 9-2 in 2020.
Other players on the team include Alexandria Cannon, Grace Miraski, Isla Diviny, Kasey Laukaitis, Keira Secoda, Noelle Heron and Paige Bowers.
Assistant coaches are John McFadden and Sean Heron.
“The girls listen and they play hard,” Jason said. “We were probably the smallest team in the tournament but we had the most heart and hustle. The girls are quick and aggressive. They’re just not tall.
“But I think they learned a ton just by going out there and I’m really looking forward to next year and seeing what they can do.”