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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 football"
Posted: August 8th, 2014
Cameron Neal

Cameron Neal

Chris Reeseman

Chris Reeseman

Jake Whitmer

Jake Whitmer

Slippery Rock Rockets
Coach: Brendan Hathaway (8th season, 43-23)
2013 overall record: 10-1
2013 region record: 6-0 (champion)
2013 playoff results: Lost to General McLane 35-15 in the District 10 Class AAA semifinals.
Top players lost: Ryan Bosch, Chris Reeseman, Frank Conlon
Top returning players: Colten Raabe, Jared McDowell, Jake Whitmer, Cameron Neal, Travis Lauster, Brady Kadlubek
Assistant coaches: Fred Pryor, Travis Sarver, Eli Christy, Ken Raabe

Outlook: Slippery Rock rolled to the Region 5 championship last season but the Rockets were upset by General McLane in the District 10 Class AAA semifinals. Slippery Rock’s program has been on the rise in the past few years and with minimal graduation losses, the Rockets could be a region and district contender, once again. The Rockets, who moved down to Class AA and Region 3, will have to overcome the graduation of lineman Ryan Bosch along with playmakers Chris Reeseman and Frank Conlon. Colten Raabe and Cameron Neal return on the offensive and defensive line with Jake Whitmer at quarterback. Whitmer threw for 441 yards and eight touchdowns but only tossed 26 passes in a run-heavy offense. Whitmer ran for 486 yards and nine touchdowns, and Conlon led the way with 629 yards and five touchdowns. With Conlon gone, Ryan and Travis Lauster look to step up at running back. Ryan Lauster had 26 carries for 570 yards and eight touchdowns, and Travis Lauster had 446 yards and six touchdowns on 70 carries. Brady Kadlubek is a returning wide receiver after hauling in five passes for 184 yards and four touchdowns as a junior. Blake Heller, Jared McDowell, Brandon McKnight and Travis Lauster are back at linebacker with Whitmer and Kadlubek in the secondary. The Rockets have not only developed as a program at the highest level but the lower levels as well. Slippery Rock could see that hard work pay off this fall with an experienced team and high-powered rushing attack.

30 at Perry 1
5 at Greenville* 7
12 Grove City* 7
19 at Titusville* 7
26 Hickory* 7
3 at Warren* 7
10 General McLane 7
17 Sharon* 7
24 Corry* 7
31 at Wilmington 7
*Region 3 game

Up next: Strong Vincent

–Tom Reisenweber

Posted: July 31st, 2013

Slippery Rock Rockets
Coach: Brendan Hathway (4th season at Slippery Rock, 7th season overall, 16-16 at Slippery Rock, 33-22)
2012 overall record: 9-2
2012 region record: 6-0 (champion)
2012 playoff results: Lost to General McLane 46-42 in the District 10 Class AAA semifinals.
Top players lost: Dylan Neal, Jeff Croll, Ryan Currie, Forrest Christmann, Spencer Rea, Bruce Pelletier, Joey Meyer, Cole McCandless
Top returning players: Ryan Bosch, Cameron Neal, Colton Raabe, Frank Conlon, Chris Gaul, Jared McDowell, Chris Reeseman, Brady Kalubec, Jake Whitmer
Assistant coaches: Fred Pryor, Ken Raabe, John Powell, Dave Bauer
Outlook: Slippery Rock went from winless in 2010 to a powerhouse over the past two seasons. The Rockets won nine games in 2012 and were close to knocking off General McLane in the District 10 Class AAA playoffs but fell 46-42. Slippery Rock has made big strides under coach Brendan Hathaway and will need to rebuild quickly this season to continue that high level of play. The Rockets lost four starters on both sides of the ball, including all-region first-team offensive linemen Dylan Neal and Forrest Christmann. Christmann was also voted to the first team on the defensive line and Neal was a first-team linebacker. Spencer Rea also graduated after being voted to the first team on the defensive line, and second-team quarterback Ryan Currie is gone as well. In fact, Slippery Rock’s only returning all-region player is second-team running back Frank Conlon, who ran for 895 yards and seven touchdowns as a junior. Currie is a big hole to fill after rushing for 749 yards and 18 touchdowns and throwing for 557 yards and five touchdowns. Jeff Croll, Bruce Pelletier, Joey Meyer and Cole McCandless will need to be replaced by younger players. The Rockets have Chris Gaul and Jared McDowell back at running back and Chris Reeseman at wide receiver. Ryan Bosch, Cameron Neal and Colton Raabe are back to anchor the offensive line. Bosch, Raabe and Neal will lead the defensive line, and Reeseman, Jake Whitmer and Brady Kadlubec are back in the secondary. McDowell returns at linebacker but the Rockets will need to fill in the rest of the starting lineup during camp. Slippery Rock has built a steady program and it will need to come through this fall after big-time graduation losses in the spring.

30 Brashear 7
6 Meadville* 7
13 at Central Tech 7
20 at Bradford* 7
27 East 7
4 at Warren* 7
11 Grove City 7
18 at Franklin* 7
25 Oil City* 7
1 DuBois* 7
*Region 5 games

–Tom Reisenweber

Posted: April 26th, 2013

Here is a look at the Slippery Rock football schedule this fall. We will publish schedules as we receive them from schools.

All times p.m. unless otherwise noted.

Slippery Rock Rockets
Date Scrimmages Time
Aug. 17 Wilmington 10 a.m.
Aug. 23 Karns City 7
Date Regular season Time
Aug. 30 Brashear 7
Sept. 6 Meadville* 7
Sept. 13 at Central Tech 7
Sept. 20 at Bradford* 7
Sept. 27 East 7
Oct. 4 at Warren* 7
Oct. 11 Grove City 7
Oct. 18 at Franklin* 7
Oct. 25 Oil City* 7
Nov. 1 DuBois* 7

*Region 5 games

–Tom Reisenweber

Posted in: Football
Posted: July 31st, 2012

Slippery Rock Rockets
Coach (season, record): Brendan Hathaway (3rd season, 7-14)
2011 overall record: 7-4
2011 region record (place): 5-1 (second)
2011 playoff results: Lost to Meadville 43-7 in the District 10 Class AAA quarterfinals.
Top players lost: Ben Gaul, Sean White, Chris Thomas, Josh Antal, Ziggy Mertens, Caleb Whitney, Sam Furrh
Top returning players: Ryan Currie, Jeff Croll, Dylan Neal, Forrest Christmann, Spencer Rea, Ryan Bosch, Dustin Mellot
Assistant coaches: Josh Anderson, Travis Sarver, Fred Pryor, Ken Raabe, Dave Bauer
Outlook: Slippery Rock put together a huge a turnaround season last fall after going 0-10 in 2010. The Rockets made the playoffs in 2011 and are looking to build off that this fall. Slippery Rock will need to replace several players in the starting lineup, including Ben Gaul, Sean White, Chris Thomas, Josh Antal, Ziggy Mertens, Caleb Whitney and Sam Furrh. Antal and Neal were an all-region first-team defensive linemen, while Furrh (wide receiver) and Gaul (defensive back) were second-team picks. Gaul was Slippery Rock’s third-leading rusher with 437 yards and six touchdowns last fall, and Thomas has 412 yards on the ground. Furrh led the Rockets with 15 catches for 366 yards and two touchdowns, while Thomas had three catches for 31 yards and one touchdown. Gaul added six catches for 44 yards and one touchdown leaving third-year coach Brendan Hathaway with plenty of holes to fill this season.

Ryan Currie, Jeff Croll, Dylan Neal, Forrest Christmann, Spencer Rea, Ryan Bosch and Dustin Mellot are back this season to lead a young team. Christmann was a first-team offensive lineman, while Currie was a second-team quarterback. Currie threw for 508 yards and five touchdowns and he rushed for 770 yards with 12 touchdowns last fall. Currie is one of six returning starters on offense along with Croll at fullback, Rea at tight end and Neal, Christmann and Bosch on the offensive line. Croll ran for 499 yards and three touchdowns on 104 carries in 2011. Returning starters on defense include Rea and Christmann on the line, Mellot at defensive back and Neal at linebacker.

Slippery Rock has a nice mix of returning starters and new players this season. The Rockets built confidence last year and realized they can compete with the best in Region 5. Slippery Rock opens the season with two games on the road, including a crucial region game at Meadville on Sept. 7. The Rockets will play six games on the road this year and winning away from their home field will be important.

31 at Brashear 7
7 at Meadville* 7
14 Central Tech 7
21 Bradford* 7
28 at East 7
5 Warren* 7
12 at Grove City 7
19 Franklin* 7
26 at Oil City* 7
2 at DuBois* 7
*Region 5 games

Wednesday: Strong Vincent

– Tom Reisenweber

Posted: August 29th, 2011

The Erie Times-News and are continuing District 10 football preview coverage this week, leading up to Friday’s season openers. Starting Sunday, the preview coverage included Region 6, McDowell and Region 4. The coverage will continue through Thursday. Included in each preview are complete rosters for each team.

Earlier, the Times-News published the 112-page Kickoff preseason guide and posted the online Summer Huddle series on the Varsity blog.

Check out the links to the Times-News team previews:
Sunday: McDowell preview
Sunday: Region 6
Monday: Region 4
Tuesday: Region 5
Wednesday: Region 2
Thursday: Region 3
Thursday: Region 1

Posted in: District 10, Football
Posted: August 3rd, 2011

Slippery Rock Rockets
Coach (season, record): Brendan Hathaway (2nd season, 0-10)
2010 overall record: 0-10
2010 region record (place): 0-6 (seventh)
2010 playoff results: Did not qualify for the District 10 playoffs.
Top players lost: Brandon Henry, Shawn McGonigle, Jack Viale
Top returning players: Dylan Neal, Sam Furrh, Chris Thomas, Ben Gaul
Assistant coaches: Josh Anderson, Travis Sarver, Ken Raabe, John McCall
Outlook: Slippery Rock will be searching for its first win under coach Brendan Hathaway this season and the Rockets have plenty of experience to make that happen. With only three key players graduating, Slippery Rock is trying to build the program in the right direction. Dylan Neal and Sam Furrh return after all-region years in 2010, while Chris Thomas and Ben Gaul are back as well. Joshn Antal, Nate Sekford and Mike Rummel are new players looking to make an impact on the varsity level right away.

The Rockets have a solid line from last year and had a good offseason in the weight room. The biggest key will be limiting turnovers. Slippery Rock has a brutal road game to start the year at Wilmington before a home opener against Franklin. The Rockets will need to come together as a team quickly in camp in order to improve on last year’s winless season.

2 at Wilmington 7
9 Franklin* 7
16 at DuBois* 7
23 Meadville* 7
30 at Corry* 7
7 Sharon 7
14 at Hickory 7
21 at Grove City* 7
28 Oil City* 7
4 Greenville 7

Look for the Kickoff magazine at a Country Fair near you beginning Aug. 15. The 112-page magazine previews the upcoming District 10 football season, including top returning players, schedules, stats and more.

Thursday: Strong Vincent

– Tom Reisenweber

Posted: July 26th, 2009

Slippery Rock Rockets
: Joe Lamenza
slipperyrock2008 record: 9-4
2008 region record (place): 4-3 (fourth)
Playoff results: Reached the District 10 Class AA championship before falling to eventual PIAA champion Wilmington, 21-14 in overtime.
Top players lost: QB/DB Jono Powell, RB/DB Isaac Osborne, WR/DB Derrick Orloski, K/P Mike Ramirez, OL/DL Anthony Papley, OL/LB Doug Upton, TE/DE Zach Smith, WR/DB Ethan Geisler
Top players returning: RB/DB Justin Angerett, RB/LB Ayron Gallagher, OL/LB Kevin Rummell, OL/DL Brent Ayers, WR/DB Ryan Gordon, QB/DB Sean White
Key games: Sept. 25 at Sharon, Oct. 30 at Wilmington, Nov. 6 at Greenville
Outlook: The Rockets had a great postseason in 2008, almost knocking off the PIAA Class AA champions Wilmington in the D-10 title game. While Slippery Rock’s run was great, the Rockets will have to basically start over from scratch this season. Slippery Rock lost its all-everything Jono Powell to graduation, along with Isaac Osborne and Derrick Orloski. Those three contributed almost all of the Rocket offense. A huge portion of the Rockets’ defense (Anthony Papley, Doug Upton and Zach Smith) is gone as well. One bright spot coming back for the Rock is running back Justin Angerett. Angerett was an important part of the Rockets’ first-round playoff upset of North East. The Rockets will look to Dan Jeon to replace all-state kicker Mike Ramirez, and they hope Ayron Gallagher will stabilize the defense. Gallagher and sophomore Sean White both saw time at quarterback last season and could compete for the starting job. As if there weren’t enough transition going on for the Rockets, coach Clyde Conti resigned. Joe Lamenza takes over this season after coaching Beaver in ’08. He will be tested right away. The Rockets open at Fort LeBoeuf before taking on a talented Sharon team just three weeks later.

4 at Fort LeBoeuf 7
11 Oil City* 7
18 Hickory* 7
25 at Sharon* 7
3 Reynolds* 7
9 Titusville* 7
15 at Meadville 7
24 at Chaney 2
30 at Wilmington* 7
6 at Greenville* 7

* Region 3 games

Monday: Titusville

Posted: July 12th, 2009
Wilmington's Derrick Burns, one of the top running backs and linebackers in District 10, already has committed to the University of Pittsburgh.

Wilmington's Derrick Burns, one of the top running backs and linebackers in District 10, already has committed to the University of Pittsburgh.

Region 3 was the best Class AA region in 2008 with the best AA team in the state: Wilmington. The Greyhounds blew through the regular season schedule not losing on region game before making an impressive run to the PIAA championship. In fact, Wilmington’s only loss last year was a surprising 22-21 setback to Karns City in the final regular-season game. The Greyhounds return plenty of starters and should be a force once more in the region. Sharon is perenially a tough team but still fell short to the Greyhounds. Slippery Rock almost pulled off the upset of the year as the Rockets pushed Wilmington to overtime in the District 10 championship. Region 3 had three of the final four teams in the D-10 playoffs, including both teams in the title game. Here is a look at last year’s final standings:

Region 3
Region Overall

x-Wilmington 7-0 15-1
z-Sharon 6-1 10-2
z-Greenville 4-2 7-3
z-Slippery Rock 4-2 9-3
Titusville 2-5 4-6
Hickory 1-6 2-7
Oil City 2-4 3-6
Reynolds 0-6 0-9
x-region champion
z-qualified for playoff spot

Key 2009 games: Sept. 25 Slippery Rock at Sharon, Oct. 9 Wilmington at Sharon, Oct. 30 Slippery Rock at Wilmington
Predicted champion: Wilmington

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