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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 tagged "General McLane football"
Posted: July 16th, 2014

Ian Mallory

Steven Shinn

Evan Dillen

General McLane Lancers
Coach: Jim Wells (18th season, 151-43)
2013 overall record: 9-4
2013 region record: 3-2 (third)
2013 playoff results: Defeated Warren 55-25 in the District 10 Class AAA quarterfinals and Slippery Rock 35-15 in the semifinals before losing to Cathedral Prep 63-21 in the championship.
Top players lost: Tyler Sanders, Zach Fox, Brett Kulka, Chris Laird, Zane Berger, Clay Smith, Matt Costa, Jarrell Johnson
Top returning players: Evan Dillen, Greg Streiff, Steven Shinn, Ian Mallory, Mike Novel, Kendrick Storm-Bailey, Kyle Sult, Joe Dunn, Briggs Twitchell, Dave Ingalls, Ryan Carpenter, Mike Allison
Assistant coaches: Brad Wheeler, Bill Frick, Scott Bolheimer, Zach Lucas


Click below for the outlook and team schedule.

–Tom Reisenweber
Read the rest of this entry »

Posted: November 22nd, 2013

Two District 10 football championship games will be played tonight, so it’s time for the Our Call predictions. Here are beat reporter Tom Reisenweber’s predicted outcomes for tonight’s games:

Class A championship
Lakeview 24, Sharpsville 21

Class AAA championship
Cathedral Prep 38, General McLane 7

Also, get a look at previews for both games, including the Prep-McLane story.

The Our Call picks for Saturday’s Girard-Hickory and McDowell-Mifflin County games will be posted Saturday morning. Have you voted in our Varsity poll on the Varsity home page?  Here’s the question:

Will the Girard football team upset Hickory to end Erie County’s District 10 Class AA title drought at 19 years?

More than 400 people already have voted. Vote now on the Varsity home page.

Posted in: District 10, Football
Posted: July 7th, 2013

General McLane's Clay Smith excelled on offense and defense in 2012.

Jim Wells

Mike Suminski figures to be one of the Lancers' premier players in the backfield this season.

Brett Kulka

General McLane Lancers
Coach: Jim Wells (17th season, 142-39)
2012 overall record: 9-3
2012 region record: 3-2 (third)
2012 playoff results: Defeated Oil City 56-35 in the District 10 Class AAA quarterfinals and Slippery Rock 46-42 in the semifinals before losing to Cathedral Prep 48-14 in the championship.

Top players lost: Quinn Thompson, Aidan Graham, Zack Leicht, Tyler Hendricks, Marcus Erdman, Logan Weschler

Top returning players: Mike Suminski, Clay Smith, Brett Kulka, Zane Berger, Jarrell Johnson, Tyler Sanders, Zach Fox, Chris Laird, Matt Costa

Assistant coaches: Bill Frick, Brad Wheeler, Elliot Leplaca, Zach Lucas

Outlook: General McLane has some important holes to fill this year in camp. The Lancers moved up to Class AAA last year and made their way to the District 10 Class AAA championship game before falling to eventual state champion Cathedral Prep. McLane’s biggest issue will be at quarterback after the graduation of Quinn Thompson and Marcus Erdman. Thompson, a Connecticut recruit, was voted to the all-region first team at tight end and spent time under center running the offense. He was also voted to the all-region first team at defensive line. Thompson threw for 226 yards and two touchdowns and ran for 721 yards and seven TDs. Erdman threw for 164 yards and one touchdown and Aidan Graham completed 4-of-5 for 207 yards and three touchdowns in several trick plays. The Lancers also lost Zack Leicht, Tyler Hendricks and Logan Weschler to graduation. Graham ran for 925 yards and 12 touchdowns to be voted to the all-region second team at running back and defensive back, while Weschler as first team at punter and Hendricks was voted to the first team at linebacker. With plenty of graduation losses, McLane will be young this year.

The Lancers will have some experience to turn to in Mike Suminski, Clay Smith, Brett Kulka, Zane Berger, Jarrell Johnson, Tyler Sanders, Zach Fox, Chris Laird, Matt Costa. Kulka, who committed to Maryland earlier this offseason, was voted to the all-region first team on the offensive line last year. He is one of the top returning linemen in District 10 this season. Smith is another returning all-region selection as he was voted to the second team at wide receiver. Smith caught six passes for 171 yards and three touchdowns, while Johnson led McLane with nine catches for 181 yards and one touchdown. The two will be counted on to produce on offense as the Lancers have to fill in the rest of the skill positions with new players. Fox could be in the mix at quarterback along with Evan Dillen. Dillen is among a group of new players that could contribute right away, along with Kyle Sult, Mike Allison, Ian Mallory and Mike Novel. Suminski and Berger will look for more carries this season behind a rebuilding offensive line. Kulka and Costa are back to lead both the offensive and defensive lines, while the Lancers might look to Mallory and Novel to start right away.

Kulka was second in tackles for McLane last year with 54, while Sanders was fourth with 50. Kulka also had seven sacks and Laird had four last year and both are back to lead a strong McLane defense. The Lancers open the season at home against rival Fort LeBoeuf before a brutal road game at McDowell to open the region season. McLane has plenty of crossover Class AAA games this year with Franklin, Oil City, Conneaut and Bradford with a huge game looming in Week 10 at Prep. The Lancers’ program is strong enough to reload instead of rebuild. McLane will need to reload its backfield quickly, including a leader under center to run the complicated option offense. If the Lancers can stock their backfield with running backs and build its line back up, they will be, once again, one of the top Class AAA teams in District 10.

30 Fort LeBoeuf 7
6 at McDowell* 7
13 at Oil City 7
20 Franklin 7
27 Conneaut 7
4 at East* 7
11 at Bradford 7
18 Strong Vincent* 7
25 Central Tech* 7
1 at Cathedral Prep* 7
*Region 6 games

Monday: Girard
–Tom Reisenweber
Posted: June 26th, 2013

Brett Kulka

General McLane lineman Brett Kulka has verbally committed to Maryland. The 6-foot 5-inch, 230-pound defensive end alerted Maryland coaches earlier this week. He is the first Division I commitment out of District 10 in the 2013-14 school year with more recruits being looked at throughout the summer.

For more on Kulka’s commitment, check out today’s Erie Times-News story.
–Tom Reisenweber
Posted in: Football
Posted: February 6th, 2013

McDowell running back/outside linebacker James Conner signs his National Letter of Intent with Pitt Wednesday at the McDowell's lirbary. MATT MEAD/Erie Times-News

Today is National Letter of Intent Day, and many area football players and other athletes are set to sign with Division I and Division II schools or commit to program at other levels.

The Erie Times-News took a look at the area football players expected to sign today. Read a short bio on each player. Here’s the list:

Damion Terry, Cathedral Prep – Michigan State (Update: MSU reports that his letter of intent has been received.)
Delton Williams, Cathedral Prep – Michigan State (Update: MSU reports that his letter of intent has been received.)
John Chereson, Cathedral Prep – Notre Dame (walk-on)
Erik Swanson, Cathedral Prep – Pennsylvania
Jake Plonski, Cathedral Prep – Mercyhurst
Nick Dubowski, Cathedral Prep – Indiana (Pa.)
Brendan Klemensic, Cathedral Prep – Gannon
James Conner, McDowell – Pittsburgh (Update: Pitt reports that his letter of intent has been received.)
Sean Gallagher, McDowell – Edinboro
Riley Dunbar, McDowell – Mercyhurst
DeShawn Coleman, Hickory – West Virginia
Dionte Pope, Hickory – Edinboro
Artrel Foster, Meadville – Temple
Quinn Thompson, General McLane – Connecticut (Update: UConn reports that his letter of intent has been received.)
Aidan Graham, General McLane – Clarion
Nathan O’Brien, Eisenhower – Lock Haven
Aaron Lundmark, Eisenhower – Grove City
Logan Rickert, Reynolds – IUP

Following are the athletes from other sports who plan to sign today. Read a short bio on each athlete.

Eli Flynn, Cathedral Prep – Concord College (W.Va.)
Scott Hess, Cathedral Prep – Indiana (Pa.)
Cross country
Ethan Louis, Cathedral Prep – Dayton
Austin Pondel, Corry – Penn State
Hunter Johnston, Saegertown –Dayton
Cory Kuzilla, Harbor Creek – California (Pa.)
Olivia Augustyniak, Mercyhurst Prep – Duquesne
Sarah Kaiser, Mercyhurst Prep – Cleveland State
Track and field
Jaynee Corbett, Corry – Youngstown State
Maria Peluso, Fort LeBoeuf – Shippensburg
Evan Daley, Fort LeBoeuf – Clarion
Water polo
Michael Squeglia, Cathedral Prep – Gannon

Note: Coaches are encouraged to notify the Times-News if an athlete plans to commit to a college.

Posted: November 23rd, 2012

Zachary Fox

For all of the offense in General McLane’s 46-42 shootout win over Slippery Rock in the District 10 Class AAA semifinals, Zachary Fox made two game-changing defensive plays in the final two minutes. Fox, a 5-foot 9-inch, 140-pound junior defensive back, broke up a pass on fourth down and intercepted another to help eliminate the Rockets.

Fox has 17 tackles this season along with two interceptions, one fumble recovery and he has knocked down six passes. The Lancers’ defense faces a tough test tonight against Cathedral Prep and Fox will likely get more opportunities to make big plays.;

Poll results:

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted: November 17th, 2012

Some quick notes from Friday night’s area playoff games:

– McDowell rushed for 446 yards in a 61-14 win over Perry but amazingly didn’t have the highest rushing total among the three Erie County teams. General McLane rushed for 470 yards in its 46-42 win over Slippery Rock.

– McDowell star James Conner scored in three ways — on a run, a reception and a sack that resulted in a safety. The Pitt recruit finished with 129 rushing yards on just eight carries.

– Like McDowell’s Conner, Sharpsville’s Tyler Luchey had a big all-around game in the Blue Devils’ 41-34 win over Lakeview. Luchey had TD receptions of 2 and 43 yards. He also scored on a 55-yard return of a Lakeview fumble. His 2-yard TD catch in the fourth quarter proved to be the game winner.

– Cathedral Prep’s Delton Williams, a Michigan State recruit, had just three rushing attempts Friday in a 54-12 win over Warren but each resulted in a touchdown — 1, 6 and 11 yards. Williams also broke Prep’s single-season record with 48 receptions after making four catches Friday.

– Prep’s Damion Terry, another Michigan State recruit, became the first player in District 10 history to pass for 40 touchdowns in a season. He now has 41. He also extended his D-10 records with 6,447 career yards and 78 career TDs.

– One of Terry’s primary receivers, Brendan Klemensic, tied the Prep record for single-season touchdown catches with 11. He had a 25-yard TD reception Friday

– Slippery Rock’s Frank Conlon had a monster game in defeat against McLane. He rushed for 284 yards on 15 carries while scoring on runs of 83 and 71 yards.

– General McLane had two rushers with big games: Quarterback Quinn Thompson, a UConn recruit, was busy as he rushed 30 times for 145 yards and two TDs. Michael Suminski had 13 carries for a team-high 195 yards. Suminski had scoring runs of 2, 28, 49 and 60 yards. His 49-yard TD run provided the winning margin in the fourth quarter.

– Lakeview’s Blake Reddick rushed 23 times for 243 yards in defeat against Sharpsville. Reddick scored on runs of 2, 41, 68 yards.

Fans can check out all of Friday’s District 10 game statistics.

Posted in: District 10, Football
Posted: August 11th, 2012

Quinn Thompson

DeShawn Coleman

Damion Terry

Artrel Foster

Meadville’s Artrel Foster is the latest in a series of District 10 skill-position players who have committed to major colleges.

When Foster announced that he had picked Temple recently, he became the fourth high-profile skill-position player from the district to commit to a major college before his senior season.

Foster joins Cathedral Prep quarterback Damion Terry (Michigan State), Hickory running back DeShawn Coleman (West Virginia) and General McLane tight end Quinn Thompson (Connecticut) on that list.

At least two other skill-position players in D-10 are being recruited: McDowell running back/defensive end James Conner and Cathedral Prep running back/safety Delton Williams. Pitt is among those interested in Conner, while Williams has more than a dozen offers, including Michigan State and Nebraska.


Posted in: District 10, Football
Posted: July 12th, 2012

General McLane football standout Quinn Thompson has verbally committed to Connecticut. He also had offers from Boston College, Ohio, Buffalo, Bowling Green, Akron, Massachusetts and Temple. The 6-foot 5-inch, 225-pound tight end/defensive end decided on UConn after a recent visit to campus. He met with coaches and even ran into former Lancer Blidi Wreh-Wilson, a starting cornerback for the Huskies.

Thompson is an intimidating blocker and a force when he has the ball. He carried the ball 30 times for 292 yards and five touchdowns and caught nine passes for 250 yards and six TDs. On defense, 80 tackles, including seven sacks.

Thompson is the third District 10 player to commit to a Division I school this offseason. Hickory running back DeShawn Coleman is heading to West Virginia and Cathedral Prep quarterback Damion Terry will play for Michigan State.

– Tom Reisenweber

Posted in: Football
Posted: July 9th, 2012

General McLane Lancers
Coach (season, record): Jim Wells (16th season, 133-36)
2011 overall record: 10-3
2011 region record (place): 5-1 (second)
2011 playoff results: Defeated Greenville 54-32 in the District 10 Class AA quarterfinals and Wilmington 21-18 in the semifinals. Lost to Hickory 35-13 in the District 10 Class AA championship.
Top players lost: Chad Kulka, Josh Ponsoll, Drew Browning, Ethan Strobel, Jamie Symanowski, Brian Suminski, Matt Astorino, Joey Gierlak, Jake Krimmanich
Top returning players: Quinn Thompson, Zack Leicht, Tyler Hendricks, Aidan Graham, Marcus Erdman
Outlook: General McLane coach Jim Wells has dealt with massive graduation losses before but this season could be a tough one. The Lancers were hammered by graduation and might go through some real growing pains this season. Among the players lost are all-region selections Chad Kulka, Josh Ponsoll, Drew Browning, Ethan Strobel, Jamie Symanowski, Brian Suminski, Matt Astorino, Joey Gierlak and Jake Krimmanich. Kulka was named to the all-district team at linebacker and was a leader for McLane. He led the Lancers with 67 tackles, had one sack and one interception. Kulka also ran for 716 yards and 11 touchdowns on 104 carries and he had three catches for nine yards. Ponsoll was another leader throughout his career for the Lancers. Ponsoll, a first-team quarterback and second-team defensive back, threw for 603 yards and six touchdowns and ran the ball 150 times for 860 yards and eight TDs. On the line, Browning was a first-team offensive lineman, Strobel was a first-team offensive lineman and second-team defensive lineman, while Krimmanich was a second-team offensive lineman and Symanowski was a first-team defensive lineman. Also gone is Suminski, a first-team linebacker, Astorino a first-team defensive back and second-team all-purpose selection. Astorino ran for 996 yards and 12 touchdowns on 91 carries and caught eight passes foir 158 yards and one touchdown. Suminski contributed with 810 yards and 13 touchdowns on 137 carries. Gierlak, a second-team wide receiver, caught 11 passes for 430 yards and three touchdowns.

McLane does have some experience back this fall. Division I prospect Quinn Thompson was voted to the all-region first team at linebacker last fall and the second team as a tight end. His size, 6 feet 5 inches, 225 pounds, is a big draw for colleges and has translated to offers from major schools like Boston College and Connecticut. Thompson played some quarterback at the lower levels but will likely stay on the line to block this fall. The Lancers could look to Marcus Erdman, a second-team defensive back, to take over at quarterback. Erdman threw for 112 yards and one touchdown as a junior. He also ran for 66 yards and two touchdowns and could be called upon to take over at running back instead. Zack Leicht, a second-team offensive lineman, is back to anchor a young line, while second-team linebacker Tyler Hendricks returns along with second-team defensive back Aidan Graham. Graham (212 yards, 5 touchdowns) and Hendricks (117, 1) also saw time in the backfield as juniors and could see a noticeable increase in carries.

McLane went through a rough started in 2011. The Lancers were 0-2 and were staring 0-3 down before a monumental second-half comeback against Harbor Creek. McLane might go through the same issues this fall with a road game in Waterford to start the season before its home opener against Class AAAA McDowell. The McDowell game could get interesting as the Trojans and Lancers are similar teams in their offensive and defensive approaches. In fact, McDowell coach Mark Soboleski used to coach with Wells. The jump to Class AAA will be tough for McLane, especially its move to Region 6. The Lancers only have one region game in the first half of the season with their playoff life on the line in the second half. A key second-half game could be the regular-season finale against Cathedral Prep. If McLane pulls it together this season, that Week 10 game could be a playoff preview.

31 at Fort LeBoeuf 7
7 McDowell* 7
14 Oil City 7
21 at Franklin 7
28 Open
5 East* 7
12 Bradford 7
19 at Strong Vincent* 7
25 at Central Tech* 7
2 Cathedral Prep* 7
*Region 6 games

Tuesday: Girard

– Tom Reisenweber

Posted: February 26th, 2012

General McLane and Hickory are 67 miles apart, but over the past few years, the two schools have developed into rivals. The Lancers and Hornets boast successful football and basketball programs each year and have met in several crucial games. Here is a look at their head-to-head matchups from the past two school years.

2010 – Hickory 29, General McLane 28 in the District 10 Class AA semifinals.
2011 – Hickory 35, General McLane 13 in the District 10 Class AA championship.

Boys basketball
General McLane 62, Hickory 30 – Second round of the Fairview tip-off tournament.
General McLane 55, Hickory 49 – District 10 Class AAA quarterfinals.
General McLane 52, Hickory 38 – Opening round of the Fairview tip-off tournament
Tuesday – District 10 Class AAA semifinals.

Girls basketball
General McLane 50, Hickory 46 in the District 10 Class AAA quarterfinals.
Wednesday – District 10 Class AAA semifinals.

– Tom Reisenweber

Posted in: Basketball, Football

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