Koller Classic boys' volleyball tournament set for return to Central York

Thomas Kendziora
York Dispatch

The Koller Classic at Central York — the "granddaddy" of Pennsylvania high school boys' volleyball tournaments — is set to return for its 47th edition Saturday morning.

Twenty teams from around the state, including three from the York-Adams League, will compete in four pools beginning at 8:30 a.m. Saturday. Results in the group stage will produce a championship bracket. Seven of the top 10 teams in the PVCA Class 3A top 10 are in the field.

Central York vs. York Suburban during boys’ volleyball action at Central York High School in Springettsbury Township, Tuesday, March 28, 2023. York Suburban would win the match 3-0. Dawn J. Sagert photo

This year’s event is dedicated to beloved Central York coach Todd Goodling, who died in January after a long battle with an undisclosed illness. Event co-founder Bruce Koller — who coached the Panthers from 1970-2001 and started the event alongside his wife, Barb — will not be on hand to present the trophy, as is tradition, but his daughter Kristen will present awards to Saturday's tournament winner and finalists.

The two local squads joining Central will be Dallastown and Northeastern, both of whom are with the Panthers in the upper tier of the league standings. Northeastern hosted the 40-team Bobcat Invitational on April 1; the majority of the York-Adams League was in the field for that event, and all three of these squads made the championship bracket, with Central reaching the semifinals.

Dallastown will be in Pool A alongside No. 3-ranked Cumberland Valley, No. 6 North Allegheny, Brandywine Heights and Liberty. No. 10 Northeastern shares Pool B with No. 2 Emmaus, Penn Manor, Central Dauphin and Abington. No. 5 Central York is in Pool D with Northern York, No. 7 Pennridge, Chambersburg and Pennridge Springs. Pool C includes No. 4 Parkland, Mechanicsburg, Hempfield, Montour and State College.

Central York coaches, from front, Landon Shorts, John Feldmann and Brock Anderson during boys’ volleyball action against York Suburban at Central York High School in Springettsbury Township, Tuesday, March 28, 2023. York Suburban would win the match 3-0. Dawn J. Sagert photo

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Pool play matches will feature two games to 21 points (starting at 4-4 and playing to 25), and each team will be seeded by its eight-game record. Play-in games between fourth- and fifth-place finishers will be played to 15 points; the round of 16 will feature single games to 21 (also starting at 4-4); the quarterfinals and semifinals will be played to 25; and the final will be a best-of-three match with sets to 21, 21 and 15.

Matches won’t officially count toward teams’ regular-season records, as they’ll all be shorter than regulation length. But the opportunity against elite competition is exactly what the coaches are looking for entering the middle of the campaign.

Tickets for Saturday’s action will be $5 for students and adults. The junior varsity Koller Classic is scheduled for Friday.


Dallastown's Kamden Sowers (21) against Central York during their baseball game in Dallastown on Wednesday, Apr. 12, 2023.

Dallastown baseball's run of narrow escapes continued Wednesday with an 8-7, walk-off win over Central York. The Wildcats are now 9-0 overall and 6-0 in York-Adams Division I games entering Friday's road tilt against Red Lion. Through Wednesday's games, New Oxford had a two-game lead over Susquehannock in the Division II standings, while Bermudian Springs and West York were in a virtual tie atop D-III and Delone Catholic led D-IV by a game over Hanover.

South Western and Littlestown softball both enter Thursday 7-0 overall and 4-0 in Divisions I and III, respectively. The Thunderbolts have a Thursday tilt with Bermudian Springs, while the Mustangs will visit Spring Grove on Friday. South Western made its latest statement Monday by blowing out D-II leader Northeastern, 10-1. Fairfield enters its Friday visit to Biglerville as the narrow Division IV leader.

South Western’s Riley Crowl, right, works to tag Northeastern’s Reagan Wrightstone during softball action at Northeastern High Senior High School in East Manchester Township, Monday, April 10, 2023. South Western would win the game 10-1. Dawn J. Sagert photo

The top of the boys' tennis standings have remained the same (Dallastown clear of the field in D-I, Hanover and Biglerville tied atop D-II). None of the first-place squads are in action this weekend, but Friday’s schedule includes three Division I clashes. South Western (11-1, 4-1) is at Central York (5-5, 2-2); York Suburban (3-6, 2-3) is at Northeastern (5-4, 3-3); and Spring Grove will visit Dover as both teams seek their first win of the season.

Thursday evening features a full slate of York-Adams lacrosse games, with seven boys’ and six girls’ contests. The York Suburban and Delone Catholic boys have a divisional makeup game set for Friday, while South Western’s teams will play Mechanicsburg and Spring Grove will battle Garden Spot (boys at home, girls on the road in both matchups). Eastern York’s boys host Twin Valley on Saturday morning, while Susquehannock’s girls will play Cumberland Valley that afternoon.

Five Y-A boys' volleyball matches were scheduled for Thursday evening, headlined by York Suburban at Red Lion. Only York Catholic is in action Friday, as the unbeaten Fighting Irish will visit Lower Dauphin at 5 p.m. The Koller Classic is the only local action on the ledger for Saturday.

Division track and field dual meets were set to resume Thursday afternoon, followed by a smattering of weekend invitationals. Bermudian Springs, Dover, Delone Catholic and Littlestown will compete at the Northern York Invitational starting at 9:30 a.m. Saturday, while West York and Spring Grove are among those in the field at the Hempfield Invitational, which begins at 8.