Coming off their close triumph over Southern Lehigh two days before, the Lady Tigers were returning home and looking to be the first team this season to clinch a district playoff berth.
Instead of celebrating after last Thursday night's game, Northwestern (6-1 in Colonial League, 10-1 overall) stewed about its first loss of the 2013-14 campaign as Salisbury (5-3, 8-5) pulled off the upset, 42-41.
Northwestern was playing catch-up for most of the game last Thursday night against nonleague foe Panther Valley.
Unfortunately for the host Tigers, they were never able to catch the Panthers.
Northwestern went 5-for-24 from the field in the first half, including a four-point first quarter, which set up an up-hill battle the Tigers weren't able to conquer as Panther Valley took the victory, 55-46.
Last year Northwestern defeated Southern Lehigh in the regular season, but fell short in the league title game.
Tuesday night, the Lady Tigers completed the first step on their road to revenge against the Lady Spartans.
Northwestern (6-0 Colonial League, 10-0 overall) defeated Southern Lehigh 58-53 at Southern Lehigh High School in arguably the most anticipated Colonial League girls basketball match-up this season as the Lady Spartans (6-1, 8-4) led the South Division and the Lady Tigers control the North.
Collin Breidinger didn't play the last 4:09 of Monday's game against Hamburg as he fouled out.
Despite being ineligible to finish the game, the senior still made his presence felt.
Breidinger scored 11 points and grabbed three rebounds to help Northwestern (1-5, 3-5) defeat Hamburg, 64-47 in a nonleague contest at Northwestern Lehigh High School.
It was rough out of the gate for the Tigers as they were down 12-7 after the first quarter and didn't lead the game until a basket by Parker Jones gave Northwestern a 16-15 lead with 4:28 left in the first half.
It didn't look good for the Lady Tigers on Monday afternoon.
The girls were trailing the Liberty Hurricanes (2-1, 2-2) by seven with 4:14 left and without senior point guard Sabrina Mertz. As a team, the girls were shaky from the free throw line for most of the game.
Double digits are usually good to see in basketball.
Except for when one is talking about fouls and turnovers.
The Northwestern Tigers committed 23 fouls and 13 turnovers in last Friday's home contest against rival Northern Lehigh. Those numbers proved costly as the Tigers (1-3 overall, 0-2 Colonial League) fell to the Bulldogs 63-51.
The foul trouble began early for Northwestern as senior Kevin Markovtich (four points, two rebounds.) picked up two quick fouls, but the Tigers were still leading 8-7 after the first quarter.
Head coach Chris Deutsch is the leader of the Northwestern Lady Tiger basketball team. He is the one that answers the questions and takes flack when things go south.
However, he isn't the only one guiding these girls' to success and according to Deutsch, he isn't the most important either.
Northwestern wrestling head coach Jim Moll said in the preseason the he was excited to see what his guys would do in competition mode.
Out of the gate, Moll wasn't completely happy, but he likes the improvement.
"When we started out, I think we underperformed at Nazareth to open the season up," he said. "They came back to wrestle real well the following Monday against Notre Damd (Green Pond). It was nice to see them bounce back after having a rough weekend."
The Northwestern boys' basketball program wants to start fresh this winter
They are doing just that so far with someone who is new to the pack.
Last Saturday Kevin Markovitch dropped six points and was a force in the paint as the Tigers fell to Wilson by a score of 58-48 in the championship game of the Wilson Tip-Off Tournament held to benefit the American Heart Association.
The senior center and senior Collin Breidinger were named to the All-Tournament team for their performances in both games.
Back-to-back games in consecutive nights are the norm in basketball. What isn't so normal is a team winning both contests.
The Northwestern Lady Tigers did just that to open their season last weekend.
After defeating Whitehall 31-20 on Friday night, Northwestern beat Pleasant Valley 55-38 at Northwestern Lehigh High School to earn two nonleague victories heading in to the beginning of the Colonial League season.