First Posted: 3/19/2013
Pittston Area may as well start charging a toll on the Firefighters Memorial Bridge. They own it. With a dominating shut out of Wyoming Area 7-0 in winter games, the Patriots athletes have clinched the 2012-13 Bridge Award, the traveling trophy awarded annually to the school that wins the most Pittston Area versus Wyoming Area sports events.
This school year is the 10th anniversary of the award which was started in the 2002-03 school year. Pittston Area has won nine of the 11 years.
Wyoming Area led the standings, 5-4, after the fall season. In the fall, Wyoming Area won football, girls tennis, boys cross country, girls volleyball and field hockey. Pittston Area won boys and girls soccer, golf and girls cross country.
But Pittston Area won all seven winter games, a boys basketball game in the DeMinico Game, two girls basketball games, one in the Pittston Holiday Tournament and one in the first round of the District 2 3A playoffs; two WVC swim meets, a wrestling meet and the Blue ‘n’ Gold ice hockey game to lead 11-5. With only three head –to head events scheduled in the spring – boys tennis, baseball and softball – Wyoming Area can not catch PA.
This marks the sixth consecutive Bridge Award victory for PA. They won decisively each time. Pittston Area won 13-8 in 2004-`05, 16-5 in 2007-`08 and 13-8 in 2008-`09, 13-8 in `09-‘10, 12-5 2010-‘11 and 13-5 in `11-`12.
In the 10 school years 2002-03 through 2011-12, Pittston Area teams have a 98-62 record against Wyoming Area teams. That’s a .612 winning percentage.
The first two school years of the competition - 2002-`03 and `03-`04 - the winner was decided by the overall winning percentage of the schools’ teams in sports where they played each other with head-to-head games weighted for two points. Pittston Area won both of those years. Beginning with the `04-`05 season, the formula was changed to a simple head-to-head competition. Whichever school won the most games against the rival school won the trophy.
Pittston Area won decisively in five of the first seven years of head-to-head. WA won two close ones. In 2005-`06, WA won, 11-9, and had to win the last two games, softball and baseball, to clinch. In softball Pittston Area had beaten Wyoming Area, 12-2, earlier in the season and 11 consecutive times since 1997. But Wyoming Area pulled the upset, 6-5, to give the school a 10-9 lead with the just one baseball game left. Wyoming Area had to win the game because, if the Bridge standings ended 10-10, Pittston Area would have retained the trophy. There is no tiebreaker. Wyoming Area won, 6-5.
In 2006-07, Wyoming Area won, 12-11, after being behind 11-10 with two games to go, boys tennis and softball. WA won the tennis match, 3-2, setting up a winner-take-all softball game. Lots of drama, as the Bridge Trophy was at the field for all to see. Wyoming Area won.
Pittston Area doesn’t go in for such drama. It clinched early every time it won like last school year when it led 13-1 going into the spring and won, 13-5.