WRIGHTSVILLE – The night when the Eastern York basketball program honored its latest 1,000-point scorer just happened to be the anniversary of one of the most memorable games in York County history.
Wednesday marked 41 years ago, to the day, when the Golden Knights hosted York Suburban in a game that made history in any number of ways.
On Jan. 15, 1979, the two schools played the highest-scoring game in county history. Not one, but two different players reached the 1,000-point milestone during the contest.
One of the them was current Suburban head coach Tom Triggs. The other was Eastern York standout Ken Fritchman, who also set a league record with 66 points in the Knights’ dramatic 107-106 double-overtime triumph.
Both teams set school scoring records.
While Fritchman was unavailable to take part in a pregame ceremony commemorating that contest, Triggs was on hand as the Trojans' current coach.
So, too, was the 1979 YS head coach, Joe Hasenfuss, who is an assistant on Triggs’ staff, as well as the 1979 Eastern coach, Ken Stoner, who worked as the public-address announcer at the scorer’s table on Wednesday.
In total, 12 of the players and coaches from that contest were on hand for Wednesday’s contest, which the Trojans won 68-54.
“Don’t ask me too many questions about that game,” Triggs said with a smile. “But both Kenny Fritchman and I scored our 1,000th point that night.”
Defense was not optional: The running joke about a game that tallied 213 combined points – another York County record – was that neither team played much defense.
Not true according to Triggs and Hasenfuss. In contrast to today’s game, where the 3-point shot exists and is somewhat over-used, in their opinions, back in 1979 there was no 3-point shot.
“We tried to put two guys on Kenny,” Triggs said. “But he was just unconscious and it wasn’t poor defense either. He was just making every shot.”
Fritchman scored 16 points in the fourth quarter alone to help rally the Knights to tie the contest up in the final minute.
Triggs and Hasenfuss said Fritchman did it again in the first four-minute overtime in which he scored eight more points.
“We were ahead near the end of regulation and he made a bucket,” Hasenfuss said. “And again in the first overtime, we were ahead at the end and he made another bucket.”
Stoner, who is good friends with Hasesnfuss to this day, will never forget that night.
“It was a fantastic night,” Stoner said. “Everybody was hot and the 3-point shot wasn’t in play back then. And Kenny, who scored 66 points, a lot of his shots would have been from beyond where that 3-point line is today.”
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Seitz honored, but Trojans win: While Fritchman never had the chance to play when the 3-point shot was finally implemented in the high school game, the latest Eastern York member of the 1,000-point club has taken advantage of it a lot. Trevor Seitz, who reached his personal milestone Monday against Susquehannock, leads the Y-A in 3-pointers made this season with 48.
Seitz was given a commemorative game ball in another pregame ceremony.
Despite a game-high 24 points from the Golden Knight standout, the visitors led for the vast majority of Wednesday night's game behind a big night from Aidan Hughley (23 points).
The Trojans led at one point in the fourth quarter by as many as 19 points, but the Knights rallied back to pull within eight with just under two minutes remaining.
Shades of Fritchman probably crept into Triggs' head just a little at that point.
“Yeah, we maybe kind of panicked a little bit,” Triggs said. “And we became undisciplined. If we want to get to the next level, we’ll have to tighten our defense because when you get into counties, districts and states – not that we’re going to – but if we do, scores tend to drop and drop very quickly.”
Suburban is 10-3 overall and 5-1 in York-Adams Division II. Eastern is 7-7 and 3-4.
Reach Ryan Vandersloot at email@example.com.