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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 "Northwestern basketball"
Posted: December 2nd, 2013

Northwestern Wildcats
Coach: Mike Coletta (2nd season, 9-13)
2012-13 overall record: 9-13
2012-13 region record: 3-11 (seventh)
2012-13 playoff results: Did not qualify for the District 10 playoffs.
Top players lost: Kyle McKeen, Grant Panko
Top returning players: Jorey Balog, Corey Shinko, Griffin Hites, Jacob Thomas, Nate Tewell, Josiah Friend, Sam Yochim
Assistant coaches: Joe Marsili, Guy Shinko, Vince Coletta
Outlook: Northwestern hovered around .500 last year under new head coach Mike Coletta. The Wildcats also had seven of their losses by seven points or less. Northwestern hung with some of the top teams in Region 4 and remained competitive throughout the season. The Wildcats are looking to improve on that total this season as they continue to learn a new system. Northwestern will have to replace two leaders in Kyle McKeen and Grant Panko. McKeen was an explosive player and even eclipsed 40 points in one game last year. He finished with 17.3 points per game and were voted to the all-region first team. Panko added 6.5 points per game and replacing the two seniors won’t be easy. Northwestern returns Jorey Balog, Corey Shinko, Griffin Hites, Jacob Thomas, Nate Tewell, Josiah Friend and Sam Yochim. Shinko had a breakout sophomore season, averaging 11.5 points per game and was voted to the all-region second team. He is back in the starting lineup along with Hites, Balog and Tewell. Tewell scored 5.5 points per game last season and Hites had 3.9 ppg. The Wildcats could also receive immediate contributions from sophomores Pete Buckoski and Russell Gariepy. Northwestern will be without Yochim for a while. He tore his ACL in the spring and could be back by January. Coach Mike Coletta brings an impressive system from his days at North East to Albion. It paid off last year in the form of nine wins and staying competitive throughout the season. If the Wildcats continue to grow in the system and develop, they could be a tough team to beat this season. Region 4 has several powerhouses but there could be a playoff spot or two open by the beginning of February. Northwestern could be a team to keep an eye on with its depth.

6 Cambridge Springs tournament
7 Cambridge Springs tournament
10 at Corry 7:30
13 at Conneaut 7:30
20 Union City* 7:30
27 Northwestern tournament
28 Northwestern tournament
2 at Mercyhurst Prep* 7:30
4 Fairview* 7:30
8 at Titusville* 7:30
10 Iroquois* 7:30
14 North East* 7:30
17 at Seneca* 7:30
21 at Union City* 7:30
23 Mercer 7:30
25 Reynolds 7:30
28 Mercyhurst Prep* 7:30
31 at Fairview* 7:30
4 Titusville* 7:30
7 at Iroquois* 7:30
11 at North East* 7:30
14 Seneca* 7:30
*Region 4 games

Coach: Karen Sewell (6th season)
2012-13 overall record: 6-16
2012-13 region record: 3-11 (tied for sixth)
2012-13 playoff results: Did not qualify for the District 10 playoffs.
Top players lost: Carolyn Kaufer, Cassidy Taylor
Top returning players: Hailee Benton, Katie Shade, Teresa Wheeler
Assistant coaches: John shade, Julie Myers, Steve Sawin
Outlook: Northwestern continues to try and get its program headed in the right direction in a tough region. The Wildcats won six games last winter and have some work to do to contend with the best Class AA teams in District 10. Northwestern will have to replace two of its top scorers in Carolyn Kaufer and Cassidy Taylor. Kaufer scored 10.4 points per game and led the Wildcats in rebound, while Taylor scored 6.4 ppg. Northwestern has an experienced group back in Hailee Benton, Katie Shade and Teresa Wheeler. Benton and Shade are senior guards, while Wheeler is a junior guard. Benton scored 7.2 points per game last winter, while Wheeler scored 5.5 ppg. The Wildcats will need some help in supporting the three returning starters. Northwestern could receive immediate contributions from sophomores Sara Morini, Kayla Osborne, Elizabeth Havican along with freshmen Ashley Ackerman and Scarlett Seneta. The Wildcats are still rebuilding but they have the experience to compete in Region 4. If Northwestern can build their chemistry and come together as a team, they could surprise a few teams in the second half of the season and maybe even ruin a few playoff dreams.

10 Reynolds 7:30
12 at Titusville 7:30
16 Corry 7:30
18 North East* 7:30
19 at Cochranton 7:30
23 at Girard* 7:30
27 Iroquois tournament
28 Iroquois tournament
6 Iroquois* 7:30
7 at Cambridge Springs 7:30
9 at Union City* 7:30
13 Seneca* 7:30
16 at Fairview* 7:30
20 at General McLane* 7:30
23 at North East* 7:30
25 at Maplewood 2:30
27 Girard* 7:30
30 at Iroquois* 7:30
3 Union City* 7:30
6 at Seneca* 7:30
10 Fairview* 7:30
13 General McLane* 7:30
*Region 4 games

–Tom Reisenweber

Posted: February 16th, 2013
Cassidy Taylor

Northwestern senior Cassidy Taylor put together several impressive games as she ended her high school career.

Her latest was a 22-point performance in a 59-35 win over Union City. Taylor connected on 10 field goals and was 2-of-3 from the free-throw line. She averaged 6.9 points per game for the Wildcats this season.

Earlier this year, Taylor broke double digits with 13-point games in a 55-21 win over Union City and in a 65-30 loss to Harbor Creek.

She also had 11 against Maplewood and 10 points against Reynolds and Strong Vincent.

Poll results:

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted: January 3rd, 2013

Posted in: Basketball
Posted: November 19th, 2012

Northwestern Wildcats
Coach (season): Mike Coletta (1st season)
2011-12 overall record: 11-11
2011-12 region record (place): 5-5 (tied for third)
2011-12 playoff results: Lost to Fairview 48-41 in a District 10 Class AA play-in game.
Top players lost: Jon Cook, Aaron Morley, Josh Niedermeyer
Top returning players: Kyle McKeen, Grant Panko
Assistant coaches: Zane Meeder, Pat LaFuria, Guy Shinko
Outlook: Northwestern made strides last winter by making the postseason. New head coach Mike Coletta is looking to take the Wildcats a step further and contend for the District 10 championship. Coletta spent the past five years learning from coach Tom Pyle at North East and is looking to make a splash right away. The Wildcats have some holes to fill with the graduation of John Cook, Aaron Morley and Josh Niedermeyer. Cook was voted to the all-region second team last year, while Morley and Niedermeyer were big-time contributors as well. The Wildcats have some experience back in standouts Kyle McKeen and Grant Panko and Northwestern could also receive contributions from sophomore Corey Shinko. The Wildcats won’t be short on guards and speed this season but size and experience could be issues. Northwestern could be more a of a run-and-gun team to make up for the lack of height and the Wildcats will need to battle on the boards as well. Northwestern is in a wide-open class in Class AA and if the Wildcats buy into a new system and develop some younger players, they could be in the mix for the region and district titles.

7-8 Cambridge Springs tournament
11 Corry 7:30
14 Conneaut 7:30
21 at Union City* 7:30
27-28 Northwestern tournament
3 Mercyhurst Prep* 7:30
5 at Fairview* 7:30
8 Titusville* 7:30
11 at Iroquois* 7:30
15 at North East* 7:30
18 Seneca* 7:30
22 Union City* 7:30
24 at Mercer 7:30
26 at Reynolds 7:30
29 at Mercyhurst Prep* 7:30
1 Fairview* 7:30
5 at Titusville* 7:30
8 Iroquois* 7:30
12 North East* 7:30
15 at Seneca* 7:30
*Region 4 games

Coach (season): Karen Sewell (6th season)
2011-12 overall record: 10-12
2011-12 region record (place): 6-8 (fifth)
2011-12 playoff results: Did not qualify for the District 10 Class AA playoffs.
Top players lost: Haley Schaef, Izzy McKean, Megan Alward
Top returning players: Carolyn Kaufer, Cassidy Taylor, Brittany McLaughlin
Assistant coaches: Steve Sawin, Carla McKenna, John Shade
Outlook: Northwestern just missed out on the playoffs last year and will need to replace some key players to make a run at the postseason this winter. The Wildcats graduated leading scorer Haley Schaef, leading rebounder Izzy McKean and Megan Alward, who paced Northwestern in steals last year. The Wildcats returns two starters in Teresa Wheeler and Katie Shade along with senior leaders Carolyn Kaufer, Cassidy Taylor and Brittany McLaughlin. The returning group could receive big contributions from freshmen Sara Morini and Meghan Yearwood. Northwestern has a lot of quick guards and could keep up with the region powers up and down the floor. A big issue could be size underneath the hoop. The Wildcats have the ability to hang with their region opponents but building chemistry and coming together as a team will determine if Northwestern is contending for the postseason or missing out this winter.

11 at Reynolds 7:30
13 Titusville 7:30
17 at Corry 7:30
20 at North East* 7:30
27-28 Iroqouois tournament
3 Girard* 7:30
4 Maplewood 7:30
7 at Iroquois* 7:30
9 Cambridge Springs 7:30
10 Union City* 7:30
14 at Seneca* 7:30
17 Fairview* 7:30
21 General McLane* 7:30
24 North East* 7:30
28 at Girard* 7:30
31 Iroquois* 7:30
4 at Union City* 7:30
7 Seneca* 7:30
11 at Fairview* 7:30
14 at General McLane* 7:30
*Region 4 games

Tuesday: Oil City

–Tom Reisenweber

Posted: November 24th, 2011

Northwestern Wildcats
Coach (season): Karen Sewell (5th season)
2010-11 overall record: 9-13
2010-11 region record (place): 7-7 (tied for fourth)
2010-11 playoff results: Did not qualify for the District 10 Class AA playoffs.
Top players lost: Whitney Snyder, Callie Markovich, Sara Miniaci, Angela Meadows
Top returning players: Haley Schaef, Izzy McKean, Cassidy Taylor
Assistant coach: John Shade
Outlook: Northwestern coach Karen Sewell will look for some of the younger players to step up this season with four key players gone to graduation. Whitney Snyder, Callie Markovich, Sara Miniaci and Angela Meadows are gone, leaving some pretty big holes to fill. Haley Schaef returns as one of the top players in the area after leading the Wildcats in scoring last winter. She also led the team in assists and is closing in on 1,000 points. Izzy McKean and Cassidy Taylor also return for Northwestern, while Carolyn Kaufer, Teresa Wheeler and Molly Iskula could make an impact on the varsity level this season. The Wildcats are pretty quick overall and have strong guards, but the forward position could be a weakness. If Northwestern can build chemistry and develop a post presence, the Wildcats could be a tough team to beat in the region.

9-10 Slippery Rock tournament
15 at Villa Maria* 7:30
19 at Girard* 7:30
21 Maplewood* 7:30
23 at Cambridge Springs* 7:30
27-28 West Middlesex tournament
5 Iroquois* 7:30
9 at Union City* 7:30
12 Seneca* 7:30
16 Grove City 7:30
19 at Saegertown 7:30
23 Villa Maria* 7:30
24 Conneaut Valley 7:30
26 Girard* 7:30
31 Meadville 7:30
2 at Maplewood* 7:30
6 Cambridge Springs* 7:30
9 at Iroquois* 7:30
13 Union City* 7:30
16 at Seneca* 7:30

Note: Information was not submitted by the boys coach.

Friday: Oil City

– Tom Reisenweber

Posted: November 24th, 2011

North East Grapepickers
Coach (season, record): Tom Pyle (12th season at North East, 24th season overall, 197-72 at North East, 307-267 overall)
2010-11 overall record: 19-7
2010-11 region record (place): 8-2 (champion)
2010-11 playoff results: Defeated Reynolds 68-47, Mercyhurst Prep 41-37 in overtime and Sharpsville 48-45 to win the District 10 Class AA championship. North East then lost 44-43 to Summit Academy in the first round of the PIAA playoffs.
Top players lost: Kyle Regan, Spencer Cornelius, Aaron Wakley, Kyle Perdue, Daryl Brink
Top returning players: Cory Bailey, Tyler Johnson, Vincent Coletta, Tyler Davis, Josh Kitchen
Assistant coaches: Shawn Humes, Mike Coletta, Curtis Bailey, Davis Mazza, David Snippert, Steve Righi, Bob Righi, Steve Zielinski
Outlook: North East used a strong defenses and terrific work ethic last winter to gut out the District 10 Class AA championship. The Grapepickers need a similar effort this year with the loss of Kyle Regan, Spencer Cornelius, Aaron Wakley, Kyle Purdue and Daryl Brink to graduation. North East has plenty of holes to fill but the return of Cory Bailey and Tyler Johnson helps along with Vincent Coletta, Tyler Davis and Josh Kitchen. Bailey averaged 11 points per game last year, while Johnson is a tough defender. Coletta and Davis will take care of the post, while Kitchen averaged 5 points per game as a point guard last season. The ‘Pickers are hoping to defending their region and district titles this winter and it could come down to them against Mercyhurst Prep once again. Zac Erb, Rocky Owens, Dawson Scotch, Blake Bentley, Steven Denny, Max Knight, Joe Neff and Matt Macaulay could all see playing time this winter and contribute on the varsity level. A big challenge in the schedule will be playing Mercyhurst and Fairview in back-to-back games, twice.

9-10 Mercer tournament
13 Saegertown 7:30
17 at Bradford 2:30
20 Rocky Grove 7:30
22 at Cambridge Springs 7:30
29-30 West Middlesex tournament
5 Maplewood 7:30
7 at Harbor Creek 3
13 Seneca* 7:30
17 at Iroquois* 7:30
20 at Mercyhurst Prep* 7:30
24 Fairview* 7:30
26 at Fort LeBoeuf 7:30
27 Northwestern* 7:30
31 VisionQuest 7:30
3 at Seneca* 7:30
7 Iroquois* 7:30
10 Mercyhurst Prep* 7:30
13 at Fairview* 7:30
17 at Northwestern* 7:30

Coach (season, record): Terry Frontino (3rd season, 41-13)
2010-11 overall record: 19-7
2010-11 region record (place): 11-3 (second)
2010-11 playoff results: Defeated Meadville 61-36, lost to Franklin 63-40 and defeated General McLane 44-36 to be the third seed from District 10 in the PIAA playoffs. North East then lost to Blackhawk 77-59 in the first round of the PIAA playoffs.
Top players lost: Cassie Jordan, Jessa Tinko, Jessica Beardsley, Anna Zyricki
Top returning players: Alex Artise, Alexis Bowen, Anne Lewis, Tori Prather, Madi Turiczek, Leah Kowalewski
Assistant coaches: Dawn Turiczek, Pat Murphy, Matt Stark, Dave Zamperini
Outlook: North East has steadily improved under third-year coach Terry Frontino and will need some of the younger players to step up this year. With Cassie Jordan, Jessa Tinko, Jessica Beardsley and Anna Zyricki gone to graduation, the Grapepickers will be young and somewhat inexperienced. Alex Artise, a first-team all-region selection, returns along with Alexis Bowen, Anne Lewis, Tori Prather, Madi Turiczek and Leah Kowalewski. The group is all juniors and can build a strong foundation for next year. North East is quick with plenty of athleticism and chemistry but replacing a four-year starting point guard and leadership will be important. Region 6 is in transition right now with several new coaches and most teams returning some solid starters. North East has a strong group leading the way but the ‘Pickers will need to develop some depth as the season goes on.

9-10 Oil City tournament
12 Seneca 7:30
15 Strong Vincent 7:30
19 East 7:30
5 at Meadville 7:30
7 at Harbor Creek* 1
9 at Fairview* 7:30
12 at Warren* 7:30
16 Fort LeBoeuf* 7:30
18 at Franklin 7:30
19 Corry* 7:30
21 at General McLane* 4:30
26 Mercyhurst Prep* 7:30
30 Fairview* 7:30
1 at McDowell 7:30
2 Warren* 7:30
7 at Fort LeBoeuf* 7:30
9 at Corry* 7:30
11 General McLane* 1
14 Harbor Creek* 7:30
17 at Mercyhurst Prep* 7:30

Thursday: Northwestern

– Tom Reisenweber

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