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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 "Slippery Rock basketball"
Posted: December 15th, 2013

Slippery Rock Rockets
Boys
Coach: Phil Bushre (6th season, 37-72)
2012-13 overall record: 3-19
2012-13 region record: 2-14 (ninth)
2012-13 playoff results: Did not qualify for the District 10 Class AAA playoffs.
Top players lost: Bobby Paczkowski, Dustin Mellot, Shane Karl, Ryan Currie, Ryan Northcott, Michael Rummel
Top returning players: Matt Badger, Aaron Rager, C.J. Welsh, Jake Whitmer, Brady Kadlubek, Mark Cessar, Cam Neal
Assistant coach: Randy Giesler
Outlook: Slippery Rock went through a down season last winter but the Rockets have found success before. Slippery Rock will have to replace Bobby Paczkowski, Dustin Mellot, Shane Karl, Ryan Currie, Ryan Northcott and Michael Rummel. In that group is four starters and several top scorers. Paczkowski averaged 7.9 points per game last year, while Mellot and Karl each averaged 5.6 ppg. The Rockets have experience back in Matt Badger, Aaron Rager, C.J. Welsh, Jake Whitmer, Brady Kadlubek, Mark Cessar and Cam Neal. Whitmer is the only returning starter after scoring 6.5 points per game as a sophomore. Badger, Rager and Welsh provide senior leadership, while Whitmer, Kadlubek, Cessar and Neal make up a strong junior class. The Rockets could also receive contributions from freshman forward Ryan Dutton. Slippery Rock is in the biggest region in District 10, making every game mean something. If the Rockets can buy into their system and keep playing at a high level every night, they could climb out of the bottom of Region 5.

Schedule
December
6 Butler (Butler tournament) L, 41-54
7 Wilkinsburg (Butler tournament) W, 53-43
10 at Kittanning W, 48-43
13 George Junior* W, 72-57
17 at Farrell* 7:30
20 Meadville* 7:30
30 VisionQuest 7:30
January
4 Grove City* 7:30
8 at Oil City* 7:30
11 at Sharon* 7:30
14 at Hickory* 7:30
17 Franklin* 7:30
21 at George Junior* 7:30
24 Farrell* 7:30
28 at Meadville* 7:30
30 Erie First 7:30
February
1 at Seneca Valley 7:30
4 at Grove City* 7:30
6 Oil City* 7:30
8 Sharon* 7:30
11 Hickory* 7:30
14 at Franklin* 7:30
*Region 5 games

Girls
Coach: John Tabisz (18th season, 1st season back at Slippery Rock, 208-101)
2012-13 overall record: 15-8
2012-13 region record: 8-4 (third)
2012-13 playoff results: Lost to Mercyhurst Prep 36-31 in the District 10 Class AAA quarterfinals.
Top players lost: Morgan Siebka, Haley Angerett
Top returning players: Nicole Papley, Riley McGonigle, Marissa Siebka, Sarah Kadlubek
Assistant coach: Amber Osborn
Outlook: Slippery Rock came close to a big upset in the playoffs last year, losing by five points to powerhouse Mercyhurst Prep. The Rockets will look to build the program up under former coach John Trubisz, who returns for a second tenure at Slippery Rock and 18th season overall. The Rockets will have to replace Morgan Siebka and Haley Angerett. Angerett scored 12 points per game and was voted to the all-region first team, while Siebka scored 7 points per game. Slippery Rock has plenty of experience back in Nicole Papley, Riley McGonigle, Marissa Siebka and Sarah Kadlubek. Papley scored 10.9 points per game as a junior and is a returning starter along with McGonigle and Siebka. Kadlubek helps with senior leadership, while the Rockets have a strong freshman class coming in. Sedona Campbell, Jenna Whitmer, Bailey Boyd and Stephanie Croll could be immediate impact players and could be the future of the program. The Rockets are young and inexperienced but with a longtime coach back, they could improve throughout the season and be a tough team to beat in the second half of the year.

Schedule
December
6 Cardinal O’Hara (West Middlesex tournament) L, 48-58
7 Commodore Perry (West Middlesex tournament) W, 67-34
16 at Sharpsville 7:30
19 Hickory* 7:30
27 Slippery Rock tournament
28 Slippery Rock tournament
January
3 at Franklin* 7:30
6 Oil City* 7:30
10 at Meadville* 7:30
11 at OLSH 5:30
16 at Grove City* 7:30
18 Greenville 12:30
20 at Titusville* 7:30
23 at Hickory* 7:30
27 Franklin* 7:30
30 at Oil City* 7:30
February
1 Hopewell 12:30
3 Meadville* 7:30
5 at Saegertown 7:30
8 Indiana 3:30
10 Grove City* 7:30
13 Titusville* 7:30
*Region 5 games

–Tom Reisenweber

Posted: November 27th, 2012

Slippery Rock Rockets
Boys
Coach (season, record): Phil Bushre (5th season, 35-52)
2011-12 overall record: 7-15
2011-12 region record (place): 4-12 (seventh)
2011-12 playoff results: Did not qualify for the District 10 Class AAA playoffs.
Top players lost: Ryan Thompson, Sean White, Caleb Whitney, Ty Udy, Dan Bertozzi
Top returning players: Ryan Currie, Dustin Mellot, Mike Rummel, Bob Paczkowski, Ryan Northcott, Kyle Bell, Shane Karl, Frank Conlon, Jake Whitmer
Assistant coaches: Randy Giesler, Malcolm Griffin, Shawn Vogel, Steven Metzler, Joseph Kutsch
Outlook: Slippery Rock was hit hard by graduation. The Rockets lost Ryan Thompson, Sean White, Caleb Whitney, Ty Udy and Dan Bertozzi. That group includes three starters and plenty of leadership. Thompson led the Rockets in scoring, rebounding and in assists last year. Slippery Rock returns Ryan Currie and Dustin Mellot. Both started last year and could be big-time senior leaders. The Rockets also have seniors Mike Rummel, Bobby Paczkowski, Ryan Northcott, Kyle Bell and Shane Karl along with junior defender Frank Conlon and sophomore Jake Whitmer. Slippery Rock could also receive big contributions from new payers Reed Elder and Brady Kadlubek. The Rockets have a solid group of seniors back this year and they will be important in bringing along the younger players. Slippery Rock might lack size this year but coach Phil Bushre is confident the Rockets can make up for that with hard work. Slippery Rock will be a defensive-minded team in a region loaded with offensive weapons. Bushre is focusing the Rockets on minimizing turnovers and controlling the boards.

Schedule
December
7-8 Ellwood City tournament
11 Kittanning 7:30
13 at George Junior* 7:30
18 Farrell* 7:30
21 at Meadville* 7:30
27-28 Freeport tournament
January
5 at Grove City* 7:30
8 Oil City* 7:30
11 at Sharon* 7:30
15 Hickory* 7:30
18 at Franklin* 7:30
19 Seneca Valley 7:30
22 George Junior* 7:30
25 at Farrell* 7:30
29 Meadville* 7:30
February
5 Grove City* 7:30
7 at Oil City* 7:30
9 Sharon* 7:30
12 at Hickory* 7:30
15 Franklin* 7:30
*Region 5 games

Girls
Coach (season, record): Christin Miller (2nd season, 14-9)
2011-12 overall record: 14-9
2011-12 region record (place): 8-4 (third)
2011-12 playoff results: Lost to General McLane 37-34 in the District 10 Class AAA quarterfinals.
Top player lost: Anna Cessar
Top returning players: Morgan Siebka, Haley Angerett, Nicole Papley, Emily Campbell, Riley McGonigle
Assistant coach: Marissa Manko
Outlook: Slippery Rock made its way to the playoffs last year and returns plenty of experienced players this year. The Rockets will have to replace defensive specialist Anna Cessar who is the only starter gone to graduation. Slippery Rock returns Haley Angerett, Morgan Siebka, Emily Campbell and Riley McGonigle to the starting lineup. Siebka averaged 15 points per game last year and was voted to the all-region first team. She tore her ACL in the spring and is looking to bounce back in a big way. Angerett scored 11 points per game last year and was voted to the second team as a junior. Campbell was the Rockets’ second-leading rebounder, while McGonigle returns as the starting point guard. Nicole Papley averaged eight points per game last year and could be Cessar’s replacement in the starting lineup. Freshman Marissa Siebka could contribute this season as well. Slippery Rock has a solid defense and its experience could pay off in a big way this year. The Rockets are in a tough region with Franklin and Hickory but they could be right in the mix for a playoff spot in February.

Schedule
December
7-8 West Middlesex tournament
17 Sharpsville 7:30
21 at Hickory* 7:30
27-28 Keystone Oaks tournament
January
3 Franklin* 7:30
5 at Hopewell 12:30
7 at Oil City* 7:30
10 Meadville* 7:30
12 at Our Lady of Sacred Heart 5
17 Grove City* 7:30
21 Titusville* 7:30
24 Hickory* 7:30
28 at Franklin* 7:30
31 Oil City* 7:30
February
2 Seneca Valley 12:30
4 at Meadville* 7:30
6 Saegertown 7:30
9 at Indiana 3:30
11 at Grove City* 7:30
14 at Titusville* 7:30
*Region 5 games

Wednesday: Strong Vincent

–Tom Reisenweber

Posted: November 29th, 2011

Slippery Rock Rockets
Boys
Coach (season, record): Phil Bushre (4th season, 28-37)
2010-11 overall record: 10-12
2010-11 region record (place): 4-12 (eighth)
2010-11 playoff results: Did not qualify for the District 10 Class AAA playoffs.
Top players lost: Brian Giesler, Alec McDeavitt, Andrew Waryanka, Cody Wolinski
Top returning players: Ryan Thompson, Sean White, Caleb Whitney, Ty Udy, Dan Bertozzi
Assistant coaches: Randy Giesler, Jourdan Bryant
Outlook: Slippery Rock made things tough on opponents last winter and the experienced Rockets will look to take the next step this season. Fourth-year coach Phil Bushre has some production to replace as Brian Giesler, Alec McDeavitt, Andrew Waryanka and Cody Wolinski have graduated. Giesler is playing for Grove City College, while McDeavitt is at Butler Community College. The Rockets have five strong seniors back, including Ryan Thompson, Sean White, Caleb Whitney, Ty Udy and Dan Bertozzi. Thompson, White and Whitney are returning starters, while Udy and Bertozzi were key reserves last year. Whitney could be the key in the paint at 6 feet, 5 inches, while juniors Ryan Currie, Dustin Mellot, Mike Rummel and Bobby Paczkowski could be big-time contributors this season. Slippery Rock has an aggressive team with good chemistry and depth. The Rockets could be a top contender in Region 7 this winter.

Schedule
December
9-10 Fairview tournament
16 at Grove City* 7:30
20 Franklin* 7:30
27-28 Freeport tournament
January
3 at Meadville* 7:30
6 Hickory* 7:30
10 at Sharon* 7:30
13 Oil City* 7:30
17 Farrell* 7:30
19 at George Junior 7:30
21 at Titusville* 7:30
24 Grove City* 7:30
27 at Franklin* 7:30
31 Meadville* 7:30
February
2 at Hickory* 7:30
4 Sharon* 7:30
7 at Oil City* 7:30
10 at Farrell* 7:30
13 at Ellwood City 7:30
17 Titusville* 7:30

Girls
Coach (season): Christin Miller (1st season)
2010-11 overall record: 10-12
2010-11 region record (place): 5-7 (tied for third)
2010-11 playoff results: Did not qualify for the District 10 Class AAA playoffs.
Top players lost: Molly Weitzel, Jackie Basta
Top returning players: Breanna Northcott, Morgan Siebka, Haley Angerette
Assistant coaches: Matthew Stebbins, Marissa Manko
Outlook: Slippery Rock is under new direction this year as Christin Miller takes over as head coach. Miller was an assistant at South Park for four years and is hoping to get Slippery Rock back into the playoffs. The Rockets lost Molly Weitzel and Jackie Basta to graduation but have an experience group back. Senior Breanna Northcott is back along with juniors Morgan Siebka and Haley Angerette. Northcott missed the beginning of last season with a knee injury and unfortunately injured her other knee in the offseason. She will miss the first half of the season after averaging 11 points per game last year. Siebka averated 15 points per game last year and looks to be the leader of the team this year, while Angerette is a versatile player that scored 9 ppg as a sophomore. Riley McGonigle, Michelle Hartzell, Anna Cessar and Ellie Shaw could contribute as well this season. Hartzell, Cessar and Shaw bring senior leadership to the table, while McGonigle, a sophomore, is an up-and-coming point guard. Region 5 is pretty wide-open after Franklin and the three playoff spots available will be tightly-contested for. The Rockets can be in that race if they build some chemistry in a new system.

Schedule
December
13 at Neshannock 7:30
15 at West Middlesex 7:30
19 Meadville* 7:30
21 at Hickory* 7:30
22 at Farrell 7:30
January
5 at Oil City* 7:30
9 Titusville* 7:30
12 Grove City* 7:30
17 at Sharpsville 7:30
20 at Franklin* 7:30
21 Indiana 12:30
26 at Meadville* 7:30
28 Hopewell 8:30
February
2 Hickory* 7:30
4 at Seneca Valley 7:30
6 Oil City* 7:30
9 at Titusville* 7:30
11 Ambridge 12:30
13 at Grove City* 7:30
16 Franklin* 7:30

Wednesday: Strong Vincent, Titusville

– Tom Reisenweber

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