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Callahan hits milestone, receives award

By Tom Robinson

KINGSTON – By either measure, it was a special week for Jeremy Callahan.

On a personal level, Callahan headed into the holiday break by extending a family tradition, joining his father, Bill, and brother, Seth, as 1,000-point career scorers in high school.

From the team standpoint, Callahan led Wyoming Seminary to what can be regarded as the most impressive consecutive performances by any District 2 boys basketball team so far this season.

Callahan arrived at his milestone while leading a 52-41 victory over Crestwood, which entered the game as the only unbeaten boys team from the Wyoming Valley Conference and the top-ranked Big School team in the Riverfront Sports Super Six Power Rankings of district teams.

Just two nights earlier, in the team’s only other game of the week, Callahan was the leading scorer in a 53-46 win at Abington Heights, last season’s No. 1 Big School in the Super Six after a trip to the state Class 5A state semifinals.

For his efforts, Callahan is the latest PNC Bank District 2 Boys Basketball Player of the Week.

Callahan has been honored by PNC Bank and NEPABasketball.com before. The JB Hoops alum won the same award last season for leading Wyoming Seminary’s efforts in capturing the first WVC overall championship.

“Jeremy’s a two-way player,” Wyoming Seminary coach Pete Moses said. “He takes as much pride in his defense as he does on the offensive end.

“I think he’s the best shooter in the conference. He has a great basketball IQ. Good things happen when he has the ball in his hands and we really rely on him to make big plays for us in the game.”

Callahan had 21 points in the win at Abington Heights two day’s before joining the 1,000-point club at home Friday.

Needing 10 points for 1,000, Callahan hit his first four 3-point attempts to score 12 in a little more than 12 minutes. The shot from the left corner to put him over the mark also put Wyoming Seminary ahead to stay midway through the second quarter.

“It was just a normal play in the game,” Callahan said, downplaying the significance of it being the go-ahead basket. “We didn’t hit a lot of shots in particular early in the game.

“Then, we had that one stretch in the second quarter where we really scored well and really played a lot of good defense, which is really what we need to do.”

Although he was well aware of the number he needed to get to 1,000, Callahan picked his spot, hitting two 3-pointers in the first quarter, then two 42 seconds part during the second quarter.

“We’ve been stressing recently good shots by everyone,” Callahan said. “It doesn’t matter who you are. If you’re coming in off the bench or if you’ve been starting for three or four years like a couple of kids on the team – it’s good shots.

“That’s how we’re going to win games. We need to beat people as a team and good shots is part of that.”

Callahan added one more 3-pointer in the second half to finish with 22 points and finish the night with 1,012 for his career.

“Coming into the week, getting close, you kind of start to take a lot of time to think about it,” Jeremy said. “It’s just the culmination of a lot of work over a lot of time. It’s not just your four years in high school.

“It’s everything you do before that to prepare as well.”

Callahan is averaging 17.8 points this season while leading the Blue Knights to a 3-2 record against a difficult early-season schedule.

“He’s a vocal leader in the huddle,” Moses said. “He’s a vocal leader in the locker room.

“We’re really pleased with the way he’s taken on a leadership role with our team.”

The defending District 2 Class 3A champions suffered their losses to Cardinal O’Hara from Philadelphia and to Dallas, a Class 5A team currently on a six-game winning streak.

“We’re getting better every day,” Callahan said. “We started off playing a really tough team in Cardinal O’Hara and I think we learned a lot from that game.

“ … I think by the end of the season, we’ll be in a good spot.”

Callahan scored 43 points in the two wins, but both Moses and Callahan said they were pleased with how the Blue Knights held down two strong opposing offenses during the week.

Following the win over Crestwood, Callahan said the Abington Heights game took on the same look.

“That’s kind of going to be the recipe for us this year,” he said. “Taking good shots, keeping teams under 50, playing all-around good basketball and getting everyone involved.”

Jeremy got ready for his senior season with another AAU season playing on the JB Hoops National team that Bill coaches. He has played in the AAU program since seventh grade and made an immediate impact on the high school level as the WVC Division 3 Player of the Year selection that season by coaches.

Jeremy followed up his Player of the Year performance by earning first-team WVC Division 3 all-star honors last season from both NEPABasketball.com and the division coaches. He was again named first-team division all-star last season by NEPABasketball.com.

Even with all that time devoted to basketball, Jeremy spent enough time on the golf course to become a District 2 individual champion this fall and earn his third trip to the Pennsylvania Interscholastic East Regional. As a junior, he had qualified through the East Regional to make an appearance in the state tournament.

Jeremy is the son of Bill and Laura Callahan of Hanover Township. Bill reached his 1,000-point mark at GAR and also played at Dickinson College. Seth got to 1,000 at Wyoming Seminary before playing National Collegiate Athletic Association Division I basketball at New Jersey Institute of Technology, then finishing up his career on the Division III level at Susquehanna University.

The PNC Bank Players of the Week are announced each week on the John Bucci Show, which airs each Mondays at 5:30 p.m. on NEPA’s ESPN radio. The show is also available through the website on-demand. This week’s show can be found at: https://www.meridix.com/event/162261.

 

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