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By Mike Copper, Tom Reisenweber, Jeff Kirik Erie Times-News staff bloggers
The Varsity blog is the 2013 winner of an international EPPY award for best sports blog. EPPYs are awarded to media-affiliated websites by Editor & Publisher, an industry trade publication. Varsity is primarily maintained by Times-News sports writers Mike Copper and Tom Reisenweber and sports editor Jeff Kirik.   Read more about this blog.
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Posts categorized "Summer Huddle"
Posted: August 11th, 2013

Region 6 returning all-stars
Erie Times-News All-District 10 Team
2012 underclassmen (Current year listed)
Offense
Scot Augustine McDowell 12 OL
Special teams
Ethan Stark McDowell 12 P
Defense
Felix Manus-Schell Cathedral Prep 12 DB
Tyree Spearman McDowell 12 DB

Region 6 returning all-stars
2012 underclassmen (Current year listed)
First team
Offense
Alex Greenawalt Cathedral Prep 12 WR
Brett Kulka General McLane 12 OL
Scot Augustine McDowell 12 OL
Defense
Felix Manus-Schell Cathedral Prep 12 DB
Tyree Spearman McDowell 12 DB
Second team
Offense
Clay Smith General McLane 12 WR
Jamie Szymczak McDowell 12 WR
Devonne Barnes Cathedral Prep 12 OL
Anthony Duck Central Tech 12 OL
Special teams
Ethan Stark McDowell 12 K
Ethan Stark McDowell 12 P
Defense
Tanner DeCrapio McDowell 12 DL
Devonne Barnes Cathedral Prep 12 DL
Marlon Tyree Cathedral Prep 12 DB

2012 standings
Region Overall
x-Cathedral Prep (AAA) 5-0 15-0
y-McDowell (AAAA) 4-1 7-6
y-General McLane (AAA) 3-2 9-3
Strong Vincent (AAA) 2-3 3-7
East (AAA) 1-4 1-9
Central Tech (AAA) 0-5 3-7
x-region champion
y-qualified for playoffs

2012 Region 6 postseason results
District 10
Quarterfinals
General McLane 56, Oil City 35
Semifinals
General McLane 46, Slippery Rock 42
Cathedral Prep 54, Warren 12
Championship
Cathedral Prep 48, General McLane 14

PIAA playoffs
Class AAA
Quarterfinals
Cathedral Prep 27, West Allegheny 13
Semifinals
Cathedral Prep 38, Bishop McDevitt 3
Championship
Cathedral Prep 24, Archbishop Wood 14

Class AAAA
PIAA Subregion
District 8-10 Championship
McDowell 61, Perry 14
First round
McDowell 42, State College 0
Quarterfinals
North Allegheny 56, McDowell 6

Region 6 champions
(Since initial region alignment in 2004)
2012 — Cathedral Prep (5-0)
2011 — Cathedral Prep (6-0)
2010 — Cathedral Prep (6-0)
2009 — Cathedral Prep (4-0)
2008 — Strong Vincent (4-0)
2007 — Cathedral Prep, McDowell (co-champs, 4-1)
2006 — Cathedral Prep (5-0)
2005 — McDowell (2-0)
2004 — McDowell (2-0)

2013 outlook
Favorites: Cathedral Prep, McDowell
Contender: General McLane
Dark horse: Central Tech

–Tom Reisenweber

Posted: August 10th, 2013

Region 5 returning all-stars
Erie Times-News All-District 10 Team
2012 underclassmen (Current year listed)
Offense
Logan Way Oil City 12 WR

Region 5 returning all-stars
2012 underclassmen (Current year listed)
First team
Offense
Logan Way Oil City 12 WR
Ryan Harkness Meadville 12 RB
Kevin Daly Oil City 12 RB
Tyler Fleeger DuBois 12 OL
Special teams
Josh Hnat DuBois 12 K
Defense
Tyler Fleeger DuBois 12 DL
Second team
Offense
John Pantuso Bradford 11 TE
Bryson Paulinellie DuBois 11 WR
Frank Conlon Slippery Rock 12 RB
Trent Zdarko Oil City 12 AP
Matt Lingle DuBois 12 OL
Quinton Reed Oil City 12 OL
Nick Johnson DuBois 12 OL
Defense
Patrick Greco Franklin 12 DL
Trent Zdarko Oil City 12 DL
Alec Lloyd Meadville 12 DL
Cory Berquist DuBois 12 LB
Ryan Madden Franklin 12 LB
Jesse Rice Oil City 12 DB

Region 5 standings
Region Overall
x-Slippery Rock (AAA) 6-0 9-2
y-DuBois (AAAA) 5-1 8-2
y-Warren (AAA) 4-2 9-3
y-Bradford (AAA) 2-4 4-6
Meadville (AAA) 2-4 4-6
y-Oil City (AAA) 2-4 4-6
Franklin (AAA) 0-6 1-9
x-region champion
y-qualified for playoffs

2012 Region 5 postseason results
District 10
Class AAA
Quarterfinals
General McLane 56, Oil City 35
Byes: Cathedral Prep, Slippery Rock
Semifinals
General McLane 46, Slippery Rock 42
Cathedral Prep 54, Warren 12

District 9 Class AAA
Clearfield 49, Bradford 0

Class AAAA subregional
State College 35, DuBois 13

Region 5 champions
(Since initial region alignment in 2004)
2012 — Slippery Rock (6-0)
2011 — Grove City (6-0)
2010 — Grove City (6-0)
2009 — Grove City (4-0)
2008 — Grove City (4-0)
2007 — Titusville (5-0)
2006 — Titusville (5-0)
2005 — General McLane (8-0)
2004 — Strong Vincent (8-0)

2013 outlook
Favorite: DuBois
Contenders: Oil City, Slippery Rock
Dark horse: Warren

Sunday: Region 6

–Tom Reisenweber

Posted: August 9th, 2013

Region 4 returning all-stars
2012 underclassmen (Current year listed)
First team
Offense
Brian McNally* Girard 12 TE
Joe Dunn Girard 12 QB
Shannon Jackson* Fairview 12 RB
Jeff Dann Fairview 12 OL
Nate Conti Fort LeBoeuf 12 OL
Defense
Ryan Morris Corry 12 LB
Second team
Offense
Nate Smith Corry 12 QB
Brandon Reiser Northwestern 12 RB
Kamron Brace Seneca 12 OL
Defense
Zach Muye Seneca 11 LB
Shannon Jackson Fairview 12 DB
*Named to the all-district team

2012 standings
Region Overall
z-Corry 6-1 8-3
z-Northwestern 6-1 7-4
y-North East 4-3 7-3
y-Fairview 4-3 6-4
Girard 4-3 6-4
Fort LeBoeuf 3-4 5-5
Seneca 1-6 3-7
Harbor Creek 0-7 1-9
z-co-champions
y-qualified for playoffs

2012 Region 4 postseason results
Class AA
Quarterfinals
Grove City 56, North East 14
Hickory 48, Northwestern 22
Greenville 35, Corry 28
Wilmington 47, Fairview 0

Region 4 champions
(Since initial region alignment in 2004)
2012 — Corry, Northwestern (6-1)
2011 — North East (6-0)
2010 — General McLane (6-0)
2009 — General McLane (8-0)
2008 — North East (8-0)
2007 — Harbor Creek (6-0)
2006 — Fairview, Harbor Creek (co-champs, 5-1)
2005 — Girard (6-1)
2004 — North East (7-0)

2013 outlook
Favorite: Northwestern
Contenders: Girard, Fairview
Dark horse: North East

Saturday: Region 5

–Tom Reisenweber

Posted: August 8th, 2013

Region 3 Returning All-Stars
2012 underclassmen (Current year listed)
First team
Offense
Tyler Fattman Greenville 12 AP
Special teams
Jordan Wombacker Hickory 11 K
Tyler Fattman Greenville 12 P
Defense
Foster Reznor Grove City 12 DB
Luke Houpt Greenville 12 DB
Second team
Offense
Luke Houpt Greenville 12 WR
Foster Reznor Grove City 12 RB
Anthony Cannone Hickory 12 AP
Defense
Anthony Cannone Hickory 12 LB

2012 standings
Region Overall
z-Grove City 6-1 9-2
z-Hickory 6-1 11-2
z-Wilmington 6-1 9-3
y-Greenville 4-3 6-6
Reynolds 3-4 6-4
Titusville 2-5 3-7
Sharon 1-6 1-9
Saegertown 0-7 1-9
z-tri-champions
y-qualified for playoffs

2012 Region 3 postseason results
Class AA
Quarterfinals
Grove City 56, North East 14
Hickory 48, Northwestern 22
Greenville 35, Corry 28
Wilmington 47, Fairview 0
Semifinals
Hickory 35, Grove City 13
Wilmington 10, Greenville 9, 2 OT
Championship
Hickory 39, Wilmington 7

PIAA playoffs
Quarterfinals
Richland 38, Hickory 12

Region 3 champions
(Since initial region alignment in 2004)
2012 — Grove City, Hickory, Wilmington (6-1)
2011 — Wilmington (5-0)
2010 — Sharon (5-0)
2009 — Wilmington, Sharon (co-champs, 6-1)
2008 — Wilmington (7-0)
2007 — Wilmington (6-0)
2006 — Wilmington (6-0)
2005 — Wilmington (6-1)
2004 — Greenville, Grove City (co-champs, 6-1)

2013 outlook
Favorite: Wilmington
Contenders: Grove City, Hickory
Dark horse: Greenville

Friday: Region 4

–Tom Reisenweber

Posted: August 7th, 2013

Region 2 returning all-stars
2012 underclassmen (Current year listed)
First team
Offense
Jesse Staudt Cochranton 12 WR
Chad Eisenhooth Cochranton 12 QB
Alex Custead Cochranton 12 OL
Special teams
Defense
Alex Custead Cochranton 12 DL
Joe Swanson Mercyhurst Prep 12 DL
Alex Johnson Eisenhower 12 LB
Second team
Offense
Zack Stafford Cambridge Springs 10 WR
Brandon Roda Iroquois 11 RB
Jake Spetz Eisenhower 11 OL
Colin States Iroquois 12 OL
Jared Flaisman Eisenhower 12 OL
Defense
Jake Spetz Eisenhower 11 DL
Austin Binkert Maplewood 12 DL
Trevor Spicer Eisenhower 12 DL
Colton Noble Cambridge Springs 12 LB
Brad Carlini Cochranton 11 LB
Chad Eisenhooth Cochranton 12 DB
Miller Peters Maplewood 11 DB

2012 standings
Region Overall
x-Eisenhower 7-0 8-3
y-Mercyhurst Prep 6-1 8-3
y-Cochranton 5-2 6-4
y-Iroquois 3-4 3-8
Union City 3-4 3-7
Cambridge Springs 2-5 3-7
Maplewood 1-6 2-8
Youngsville 1-6 1-9
x-region champion
y-qualified for playoffs

2012 Region 2 postseason results
Class A
District 10
Quarterfinals
West Middlesex 75, Iroquois 13
Farrell 35, Mercyhurst Prep 7
Lakeview 36, Eisenhower 6
Sharpsville 42, Cochranton 6

Region 2 champions
(Since initial region alignment in 2004)
2012 — Eisenhower (7-0)
2011 — Youngsville (8-0)
2010 — Mercyhurst Prep (8-0)
2009 — Mercyhurst Prep (8-0)
2008 — Saegertown (8-0)
2007 — Mercyhurst Prep (8-0)
2006 — Mercyhurst Prep (8-0)
2005 — Fairview (7-0)
2004 — Fairview (7-0)

2013 outlook
Favorite: Cochranton
Contenders: Eisenhower, Cambridge Springs
Dark horse: Iroquois

Thursday: Region 3

–Tom Reisenweber

Posted: August 6th, 2013

Region 1 returning all-stars
2012 underclassmen (Current year listed)
Region 1 All-Stars
First team
Offense
Blake Reddick Lakeview 12 RB
Dewayne Burns Farrell 12 AP
Sam Breese* Lakeview 12 OL
Defense
Sam Breese* Lakeview 12 DL
Zach Van Dusen Lakeview 12 DB

Second team
Offense
Sam Crow Kennedy Catholic 12 TE
Zach Van Dusen Lakeview 12 WR
Trey Staunch West Middlesex 11 QB
Elijah Anderton Conneaut 11 RB
P.J. Campoli Sharpsville 12 OL
Special teams
Chase Hoffman Mercer 12 K
Defense
Jace Pardee Conneaut 12 LB
P.J. Campoli Sharpsville 12 LB
Dewayne Burns Farrell 12 DB
*Named to the all-district team

2012 standings
Region Overall
x-West Middlesex (A) 6-0 10-3
y-Sharpsville (A) 5-1 11-2
y-Farrell (A) 3-3 6-5
y-Lakeview (A) 3-3 7-5
y-Conneaut (AAA) 2-4 6-5
Mercer (A) 1-5 3-7
Kennedy Catholic (A) 1-5 1-9
x-region champion
y-qualified for playoffs

2012 Region 1 postseason results
Class A
District 10
Quarterfinals
West Middlesex 75, Iroquois 13
Farrell 35, Mercyhurst Prep 7
Lakeview 36, Eisenhower 6
Sharpsville 42, Cochranton 6
Semifinals
West Middlesex 42, Farrell 0
Sharpsville 41, Lakeview 34
Championship
Sharpsville 28, West Middlesex 0

Class AAA
Quarterfinals
Warren 21, Conneaut 12

PIAA playoffs
Class A Quarterfinals
Port Allegany 28, Sharpsville 21

Region 1 champions
(Since initial realignment in 2004)
2012 — West Middlesex (6-0)
2011 — Sharpsville (7-0)
2010 — Farrell, Sharpsville (co-champs, 7-1)
2009 — Farrell (8-0)
2008 — Farrell, Linesville, Mercer (tri-champs, 7-1)
2007 — Mercer (8-0)
2006 — West Middlesex (8-0)
2005 — Kennedy Catholic (6-0)
2004 — Sharpsville (6-0)

2013 outlook
Favorite: West Middlesex
Contenders: Sharpsville, Lakeview
Dark horse: Mercer
Note: Conneaut is not eligible to win the region title.

Wednesday: Region 2

–Tom Reisenweber

Posted: August 5th, 2013

Youngsville Eagles
Coach: John Victor (1st season)
2012 overall record: 1-9
2012 region record: 1-6 (eighth)
2012 playoff results: Did not qualify for the District 10 Class A playoffs.
Top players lost: Jordan Gurdak, Nathan O’Brien, Rocco Gatta, T.J. Hardy, Dan McLaughlin
Top returning players: Jacob Lauffenburger, Jake Marino
Outlook: Youngsville has been on a roller coaster ride over the past few years. The Eagles went 10-0 in 2011 before running into a buzzsaw in the District 10 Class A playoffs. Youngsville then struggled in 2012, winning one game, a 46-41 shootout against Iroquois. After two quick years with Luke Alex, the Eagles are looking for stability under first-year coach John Victor. Youngsville will have some new faces in the starting lineup after losing several all-region players to graduation. Jordan Gurdak (linebacker), Nathan O’Brien (defensive back) and Rocco Gatta (defensive) were voted to the all-region first team last fall, but graduated, along with second-team kicker T.J. Hardy. Gatta led Youngsville with 103 carries for 541 yards and six touchdowns, while Gurdak ran for 260 yards and four touchdowns. Junior Jacob Lauffenburger is back after rushing for 473 yards and four touchdowns on 147 carries last fall. Lauffenburger also threw for 695 yards and six touchdowns and will likely return at quarterback but will miss both of his top targets. Gatta had 14 catches for 185 yards and two touchdowns and Hardy caught 12 passes for 265 yards and two touchdowns. In fact, the top five receivers from the Eagles are gone to graduation. With plenty of graduation losses, Victor will have a brand-new team to mold and coach in his system. It may take a few years for the Eagles to see success but the key will be for them to buy in with a new system. Youngsville could be an interesting team to watch in the second half of the season after starters are determined and chemistry is developed.

Schedule
August
30 Fairview 7
September
6 at Iroquois* 7
13 at Cambridge Springs* 7
20 Maplewood* 7
27 Mercyhurst Prep* 7
October
4 at Union City* 7
11 Seneca 7
18 at Cochranton* 7
25 Eisenhower* 7
November
2 at Sheffield 1:30
*Region 2 games

Tuesday: Region 1 preview

–Tom Reisenweber

Posted: August 4th, 2013

Wilmington Greyhounds
Coach: Terry Verrelli (35th season, 271-113-3)
2012 overall record: 9-3
2012 region record: 6-1 (tri-champion)
2012 playoff results: Defeated Fairview 47-0 in the District 10 Class AA quarterfinals and Greenville 10-9 in double overtime in the semifinals before losing to Hickory 39-7 in the championship.
Top players lost: Donnie Watson, Tyler Donati, Jeremy Miller, John Yohman, Keith Fulkman, Slavi Pontius, Brandon Ryder, Chris Welch, Alex Patton, Zack McCluskey, Nick Pugh
Top returning players: Josiah Bloise, Cody Llewellyn
Outlook: Wilmington seems to be competitive each season no matter how many players are lost to graduation. The Greyhounds’ program will be tested once again this season. Wilmington was hit hard by graduation, losing all-region first-team selections Donnie Watson (tight end), Tyler Donati (running back, linebacker), Jeremy Miller (offensive line, defensive line), John Yohman (offensive line, defensive line) and Keith Fulkman (offensive line). The ‘Hounds also lost second-team kicker Slavi Pontius and second-team punter Brandon Ryder. Chris Welch (defensive line) and Alex Patton (defensive back) are second-team selections gone, while Watson was also a second-team linebacker. Donati ran for 1,665 yards and 21 touchdowns as a senior, while Watson caught 11 passes for 270 yards. Alex Patton also graduated after rushing for 681 yards and eight touchdowns and catching nine passes for 110 yards and one touchdown. With everything Wilmington lost, the ‘Hounds could be near the top of the Region 3 standings at the end of the year. The ‘Hounds have an experienced quarterback is Cody Llewellyn, who threw for 594 yards and seven touchdowns as a sophomore, running back Josiah Bloise ran for 184 yards. Wilmington will have to rebuild its entire line in camp but the ‘Hounds seem to produce all-star linemen every season. Longtime coach Terry Verrelli a District 10 legend and has the program headed in the right direction. The ‘Hounds open the season at West Middlesex before jumping right into huge region games against Grove City and Hickory. Wilmington has been one of the most dangerous teams in the postseason in Verrelli’s tenure and the ‘Hounds could make another run at the D-10 title this fall.

Schedule
August
30 at West Middlesex 7
September
6 Grove City* 7
13 at Hickory* 7
20 Titusville* 7
27 at Saegertown* 7
October
4 Reynolds* 7
11 Sharpsville 7
18 at Sharon* 7
25 at Greenville* 7
November
1 Bye
*Region 3 games

Monday: Youngsville

–Tom Reisenweber

Posted: August 3rd, 2013

West Middlesex Big Reds
Coach: Ed Roberson (1st season)
2012 overall record: 10-3
2012 region record: 6-0 (champion)
2012 playoff results: Defeated Iroquois 75-13 in the District 10 Class A quarterfinals and Farrell 42-0 in the semifinals before losing to Sharpsville 28-0 in the championship.
Top players lost: Luke Patten, Trevor Harrison, Sage Pope, Jeremy Jancso, Dom Pape, Roman Klaric
Top returning players: Eric Lucich, Trey Staunch, Davey Cox, Dillon Fair, Chandler Tyillian
Assistant coaches: Mark Means, Joel Murray, Steve Reaver
Outlook: West Middlesex couldn’t make its way past Sharpsville in the District 10 Class A playoffs last fall. The Big Reds, under new head coach Ed Roberson, are looking to take that step this fall. West Middlesex has one of the top rising quarterbacks in District 10 in junior Trey Staunch. He threw for 1,468 yards and 17 touchdowns while rushing for 223 yards and seven touchdowns as a sophomore to be voted to the all-region second team. Staunch will need to find some new playmakers around him as all-region first-team wide receiver Sage Pope is gone to graduation along with first-team running back Luke Patten. Patten ran for 1,515 yards and 19 touchdowns, while Pope caught 38 passes for 556 yards and six touchdowns. Jeremy Jancso, a second-team wide receiver and first-team defensive back and punter, is also gone after collecting 32 passes for 333 yards and five touchdowns. The Big Reds will be down all-region first-team offensive linemen Trevor Harrison and A.J. Barris, along with first-team defensive back Roman Klaric. Barris was also a first-team defensive lineman, and Pope and Patten were first-team linebackers. Dominic Pape (defensive back) and Austin Mirizio (defensive line) are also gone to graduation after being voted to the all-region second team. With everything lost to graduation, the Big Reds will have some experience to lean on with Staunch. Eric Lucich is back at running back, Chandler Tyillian at wide receiver and Davey Cox and Dillon Fair on the offensive and defensive lines. Lucich ran for 362 yards and three touchdowns, while Fair caught 17 passes for 243 yards and two touchdowns. West Middlesex has a new coach and new system but if the Big Reds can fill in their running backs and a few linemen, they could be the favorite to win the D-10 Class A championship.

Schedule
August
30 Wilmington 7
September
6 at Moniteau 7
13 at Farrell* 7
20 Conneaut* 7
27 Mercer* 7
October
4 at Sharpsville* 7
11 at Sharon 7
19 at Kennedy Catholic* noon
25 Lakeview* 7
November
1 Seneca 7
*Region 1 games

Sunday: Wilmington

–Tom Reisenweber

Posted: August 2nd, 2013

Greg Latimer

Warren Dragons

Coach: Greg Latimer (1st season)
2012 overall record: 9-3
2012 region record: 4-2 (third)
2012 playoff results: Defeated Conneaut 21-12 in the District 10 Class AAA quarterfinals before losing to Cathedral Prep 54-12 in the semifinals.

Top players lost: Austin Jerman, Jordan Willetts, Mark Davis, Mark Cecco, Mike Manderfeld

Top returning players: Luke Wortman, Geoff Stewart, Aaron Borger, Matt Hultquist, Alex Striech, D.J. Fehlman

Assistant coaches: Greg Miller, Mark Bupp, Paul Genis, Ken Hinton, Larry Himes

Outlook: Warren has a new head coach in Greg Latimer after Brad Wright suddenly resigned in the summer. Wright moved away from the area because of his wife’s new job. The Dragons have a solid team for Latimer to take over but they will have some big holes to fill in. Quarterback Austin Jerman is gone to graduation along with Jordan Willetts, Mark Davis, Mark Cecco and Mike Manderfeld. Davis (tight end), Willetts (wide receiver), Jerman (quarterback, defensive back) and Chris McNeal (linebacker) were all-region first-team selections, while Cecco and Manderfeld were second-team offensive linemen. Jerman threw for 2,092 yards and 28 touchdowns and led Warren with 760 rushing yards to go with eight touchdowns. Manderfeld was voted to the second team at defensive line, while Matt Falvo was a second-team linebacker and Willetts a second-team defensive back. Falvo ran for 602 yards and seven touchdowns, and McNeal had 360 yards and eight touchdowns. Willetts and Davis each had 40 catches to go with 612 yards and 12 touchdowns and 547 yards and 10 touchdowns, respectively. Cody McGraw is also gone after hauling in 20 passes for 288 yards and two touchdowns. The Dragons have plenty of skill position players to replace, but the first priority will be quarterback. D.J. Fehlman saw some time at quarterback last year and could be the natural replacement for Jerman. Warren also has some experience back to turn to. Luke Wortman ran for 541 yards and four touchdowns on 39 carries and he had 26 catches for 400 yards and three touchdowns. Wortman will have an experienced line to run behind with the return of Geoff Stewart, Aaron Borger, Alex Striech and Matt Hultquist.

Schedule
August
30 East 7
September
6 at Clarion-Limestone 7
13 Bradford* 7
20 at Meadville* 7
27 at Oil City* 7
October
4 Slippery Rock* 7
11 Corry 7
18 at DuBois* 7
25 Franklin* 7
November
1 at Titusville 7
*Region 5 games

Saturday: West Middlesex

–Tom Reisenweber
Posted: August 1st, 2013

Union City Bears
Coach: Randy Gunther (15th season, 57-86)
2012 overall record: 3-7
2012 region record: 3-4 (tied for fourth)
2012 playoff results: Did not qualify for the District 10 playoffs.
Top players lost: Josh Reinke, Gage Michael, Nick George, Jeff Berger, Austin Kinney
Top returning players: Brody Mangel, Shane Russell, Storm McDonald, Tyler Johnson, Brett Reynolds
Assistant coaches: Paul Yoculan, Jim Sheldon, Brian Patten, Josh Kerns
Outlook: Union City was in some trouble last season. The Bears had to forfeit their Week 2 game against Mercyhurst Prep because of injuries and low numbers, putting the rest of the season in doubt. Union City then bounced back to beat Maplewood 34-31 the following week. The Bears are not only looking for higher numbers on their roster this year but just some stability as a program. Union City has a playmaker in Brody Mangel at quarterback and could be a tough team to beat in Region 2. The Bears will need several backs to come up and take on a heavy workload left behind by Josh Reinke. Union City will be young in some respects but also experienced in several areas. The Bears have a tough home opener against Lakeview before hitting the road to take on Mercyhurst Prep and Maplewood. Union City also gets two region contenders in Cochranton and Cambridge Springs to close out the first half. With Class AA Corry and Girard on the schedule in the second half, the Bears will need to improve quickly in order to win more than three games this season. Union City has enough experience to contend for the postseason, now they need to prove they belong in the playoff conversation. Union City has plenty of experience back on offense but will have to find a way to replace Reinke. He was voted to the all-region first team at all-purpose after rushing for 733 yards and 10 touchdowns on 141 carries and hauling in 23 catches for 467 yards and seven touchdowns. Gage Michael, Nick George and Jeff Berger are graduation losses on the offensive line and wide receiver Austin Kinney is also gone this season. Michael was voted to the all-region second team at offensive line, while Kinney caught two passes for 34 yards and one touchdown. The Bears have pretty much everyone else returning this season. Mangel, a quarterback, had a breakout season with 538 passing yards to go with eight touchdowns, and he also ran for 479 yards and five touchdowns. Fullback Shane Russell is back after rushing for 345 yards and Brett Reynolds could see extended carries at running back. Reynolds could step up to replace Reinke, while Storm McDonald and Tyler Johnson are back to anchor the offensive line. The Bears will be looking for a few linemen in camp as well as a few wide receivers. The Bears’ defense will be without two all-region selections gone to graduation. Reinke was voted to the first team at defensive back and Michael was a second-team defensive lineman. Kinney and George are losses at linebacker, while Berger leaves a hole on the defensive line. Union City has Johnson back at linebacker, and Russell and McDonald back at defensive line. Mangel and Reynolds will lead a young group in the secondary. The Bears will need several defensive linemen to step into starting roles in camp and they will look for two defensive backs and at least one linebacker. Union City had trouble slowing teams down in Region 2 and will need a better effort on defense this season.

Schedule
August
30 Lakeview 7
September
6 at Mercyhurst Prep* 7
13 at Maplewood* 7
20 Cochranton* 7
27 Cambridge Springs* 7
October
4 Youngsville* 7
11 at Girard 7
18 at Eisenhower* 7
25 Iroquois* 7
November
1 at Corry 7
*Region 2 games

Friday: Warren

–Tom Reisenweber

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