Harbor Creek Huskies
Coach (season, record): Dan Budziszewski (31st season, 163-128-3)
2011 overall record: 7-3
2011 region record (place): 3-3 (tied for third)
2011 playoff results: Did not qualify for the District 10 Class AA playoffs.
Top players lost: Drew Barko, Austin Griffith, Beau Hill, Sean Kuzilla, Preston Meade, Chris Merritt, Lucas Morton, Jake Newara, Mitch Schauble, Paris Warner, Tyler Bretz, Brandon Phillips, Josh Kita, Chris Laboski, Jared Malinowski, Andy Smith, Pat Brennan
Top returning players: Anthony Concilla, Jake Pound, Adam Renshaw, Mark Fachetti, Jon Ward, Spencer Zeyfang, Mitchell Fife, Aaron Reese, Greg Schauble, Jake Tokarczyk, Tyler Grolemund, Austin Snyder, Anthony Trinchitella
Assistant coaches: John Ballard, Mark Brooks, Justin Blose, Dave Hoffman, Marty Dale, Andy Grove
Outlook: Harbor Creek had a tough ending to its season in 2011. The Huskies won seven games but were not given a spot in the District 10 Class AA playoffs. Harbor Creek was hit hard months later by graduation. The Huskies lost 17 lettermen, including Drew Barko, Austin Griffith, Beau Hill, Sean Kuzilla, Preston Meade, Chris Merritt, Lucas Morton, Jake Newara, Mitch Schauble, Paris Warner, Tyler Bretz, Brandon Phillips, Josh Kita, Chris Laboski, Jared Malinowski, Andy Smith and Pat Brennan. Griffith ran the offense at quarterback and threw for 823 yards and 11 touchdowns. He also ran for 153 yards and three touchdowns on 42 carries. Phillips, a first-team offensive lineman and second-team defensive lineman, is gone on the line along with Schauble a second-team offensive lineman and Meade, a second-team defensive lineman. The biggest problem for the Huskies could be in the backfield. Harbor Creek’s top four rushers are gone. Bretz, a second-team running back, ran for 1,082 yards and 13 touchdowns on 136 carries but is out of eligibility. Kuzilla was second with 608 yards and seven touchdowns, while Merritt was fourth at 139 yards and three touchdowns. Kuzilla was voted to the second team as a linebacker. Morton was voted to the all-region first team as a wide receiver and a defensive back. He caught 20 passes for 341 yards and three touchdowns and pulled in four interceptions.
Harbor Creek has some experience back. Anthony Concilla, a first-team kicker, and Adam Renshaw, a first-team linebacker, return for the Huskies. Renshaw had 85 tackles last year, while Concilla connected on 28 extra points and three field goals. Harbor Creek has a total of 13 returning lettermen, including seven starters. Aside from Concilla and Renshaw, Mark Fachetti, Jake Pound, Jon Ward, Spencer Zeyfang and Mitchell Fife are back. Pound had 67 tackles last year, while Ward recorded 65 tackles and two interceptions.
The Huskies are strong up front against the run but their biggest problem could be in their own backfield. Harbor Creek has no experience back at running back and quarterback, leaving several opportunities for underclassmen. The Huskies open the season against rival Iroquois before a brutal five-game stretch against Fort LeBoeuf, North East, Northwestern, Girard and Fairview. Harbor Creek hits the road for three of its final four games but that home game could be the most important game of the year. The Huskies will take on Corry, which could decide Harbor Creek’s playoff fate.
31 Iroquois 7
7 at Fort LeBoeuf* 7
14 at North East* 7
21 Northwestern* 7
28 Girard* 7
5 Fairview* 7
12 at Central Tech 7
19 at Seneca* 7
26 Corry* 7
2 at Greenville 7
*Region 4 games
– Tom Reisenweber