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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 "Union City football"
Posted: August 1st, 2013

Union City Bears
Coach: Randy Gunther (15th season, 57-86)
2012 overall record: 3-7
2012 region record: 3-4 (tied for fourth)
2012 playoff results: Did not qualify for the District 10 playoffs.
Top players lost: Josh Reinke, Gage Michael, Nick George, Jeff Berger, Austin Kinney
Top returning players: Brody Mangel, Shane Russell, Storm McDonald, Tyler Johnson, Brett Reynolds
Assistant coaches: Paul Yoculan, Jim Sheldon, Brian Patten, Josh Kerns
Outlook: Union City was in some trouble last season. The Bears had to forfeit their Week 2 game against Mercyhurst Prep because of injuries and low numbers, putting the rest of the season in doubt. Union City then bounced back to beat Maplewood 34-31 the following week. The Bears are not only looking for higher numbers on their roster this year but just some stability as a program. Union City has a playmaker in Brody Mangel at quarterback and could be a tough team to beat in Region 2. The Bears will need several backs to come up and take on a heavy workload left behind by Josh Reinke. Union City will be young in some respects but also experienced in several areas. The Bears have a tough home opener against Lakeview before hitting the road to take on Mercyhurst Prep and Maplewood. Union City also gets two region contenders in Cochranton and Cambridge Springs to close out the first half. With Class AA Corry and Girard on the schedule in the second half, the Bears will need to improve quickly in order to win more than three games this season. Union City has enough experience to contend for the postseason, now they need to prove they belong in the playoff conversation. Union City has plenty of experience back on offense but will have to find a way to replace Reinke. He was voted to the all-region first team at all-purpose after rushing for 733 yards and 10 touchdowns on 141 carries and hauling in 23 catches for 467 yards and seven touchdowns. Gage Michael, Nick George and Jeff Berger are graduation losses on the offensive line and wide receiver Austin Kinney is also gone this season. Michael was voted to the all-region second team at offensive line, while Kinney caught two passes for 34 yards and one touchdown. The Bears have pretty much everyone else returning this season. Mangel, a quarterback, had a breakout season with 538 passing yards to go with eight touchdowns, and he also ran for 479 yards and five touchdowns. Fullback Shane Russell is back after rushing for 345 yards and Brett Reynolds could see extended carries at running back. Reynolds could step up to replace Reinke, while Storm McDonald and Tyler Johnson are back to anchor the offensive line. The Bears will be looking for a few linemen in camp as well as a few wide receivers. The Bears’ defense will be without two all-region selections gone to graduation. Reinke was voted to the first team at defensive back and Michael was a second-team defensive lineman. Kinney and George are losses at linebacker, while Berger leaves a hole on the defensive line. Union City has Johnson back at linebacker, and Russell and McDonald back at defensive line. Mangel and Reynolds will lead a young group in the secondary. The Bears will need several defensive linemen to step into starting roles in camp and they will look for two defensive backs and at least one linebacker. Union City had trouble slowing teams down in Region 2 and will need a better effort on defense this season.

30 Lakeview 7
6 at Mercyhurst Prep* 7
13 at Maplewood* 7
20 Cochranton* 7
27 Cambridge Springs* 7
4 Youngsville* 7
11 at Girard 7
18 at Eisenhower* 7
25 Iroquois* 7
1 at Corry 7
*Region 2 games

Friday: Warren

–Tom Reisenweber

Posted: April 17th, 2013

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

All times p.m. unless otherwise noted.

Union City Bears
Date Scrimmages Time
Aug. 17 at Northwestern 10 a.m.
Aug. 23 at Reynolds 6 p.m.
Date Regular season Time
Aug. 30 Lakeview 7
Sept. 6 at Mercyhurst Prep* 7
Sept. 13 at Maplewood* 7
Sept. 20 Cochranton* 7
Sept. 27 Cambridge Springs* 7
Oct. 4 Youngsville* 7
Oct. 11 at Girard 7
Oct. 18 at Eisenhower* 7
Oct. 25 Iroquois* 7
Nov. 1 at Corry 7

*Region 2 games

–Tom Reisenweber

Posted in: Football
Posted: October 12th, 2012

Brody Mangel

Brody Mangel has been one of the key contributors in helping Union City bounce back from an 0-2 start and a shortage of players.

Mangel, a 6-foot 1-inch, 175-pound sophomore quarterback, showed his diverse skills Friday in the Bears’ 38-14 victory over Youngsville.

Mangel finished with 171 total yards and had a hand in three touchdowns as the Bears improved to 3-3 overall and 3-2 in Region 2. He completed 4-of-7 passes for 88 yards and a touchdown, and he added 
83 rushing yards and two touchdowns on 13 carries.

Mangel helped Union City take a 6-0 lead early in the second quarter when he completed a 
20-yard touchdown pass to Josh Rienke. Mangel added a 5-yard touchdown run late in the first half and scored on a 21-yard run in the third quarter.

Mangel has completed 18-of-35 passes for 312 yards and six touchdowns this season. He’s also rushed for 278 yards and three touchdowns.

He is the second consecutive Union City player to win the Breakout Award online voting. Reinke won the award a week ago.

Poll results:

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted: October 5th, 2012

Josh Reinke

Despite trouble with numbers this season, the Union City football is very much in the playoff race.

A big reason for that success 
is the leadership and outstanding play of senior running back Josh Reinke. In a crucial 35-12 win over Cambridge Springs, Reinke ran for 180 yards and two touchdowns and caught a 29-yard touchdown pass.

In four games, Reinke has rushed for 330 yards and five touchdowns and has 11 catches for 179 yards and four touchdowns.

The Bears will need to fight each week to make the postseason, and they have a steady playmaker in Reinke to lead the way.

Poll results:

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted: September 6th, 2012

The Union City football team entered the season with low numbers and its worst fear was realized when the roster dipped below a safe number of athletes. The Bears have forfeited their game against Mercyhurst Prep, scheduled for Friday, but hope to get enough players back to compete in their game next week against Maplewood.

–Tom Reisenweber

Posted in: Football
Posted: August 3rd, 2012

Union City Bears
Coach (season): Randy Gunther (1st season)
2011 overall record: 2-8
2011 region record (place): 2-6 (tied for sixth)
2011 playoff results: Did not qualify for the District 10 Class A playoffs.
Top players lost: Justin Bengel, Kyle Hetrick, Cole Lewis, Curtis Brown
Top returning players: Josh Reinke, Gage Michael, Storm McDonald, Brody Mangel
Outlook: Union City’s future could be in jeopardy after a low turnout over the summer. The Bears have 20 returning players from last year and only three confirmed freshman so far. Randy Gunther takes the program over after a quick one-year stint by Joe Sanford. Union City graduated Justin Bengel, Kyle Hetrick, Cole Lewis and Curtis Brown in the spring and lost Jarred Brooks, who moved. Lewis was a second-team all-region offensive lineman, while Bengel was a second-team linebacker. Hetrick led the Bears in rushing last season with 644 yards and six touchdowns on 148 carries, while Brooks was second at 265 yards on 59 carries. He also had four catches for 34 yards and one touchdown.

Union City has a decent group back this season but depth will be a major issue. Josh Reinke, a second-team wide receiver and defensive back, led the Bears with 19 catches for 346 yards and six touchdowns. Quarterback Brody Mangel is also back after throwing for 377 yards and six touchdowns as a freshman. Gage Michael and Storm McDonald are back on the line and their leadership could be crucial this fall. Running back Jason Klus and wide receiver Austin Kinney could step in right away and be impact players for the Bears. Union City opens with two brutal games at Lakeview and a home opener against Mercyhurst Prep. A three-game stretch could decide the Bears’ season at the end of September. Union City travels to Cochranton, Cambridge Springs and Youngsville in three straight weeks. The Bears may still be a year away from contending but building the program and generating interest are the two most important things for Union City this year.

31 at Lakeview 7
7 Mercyhurst Prep* 7
14 Maplewood* 7
21 at Cochranton* 7
28 at Cambridge Springs* 7
5 at Youngsville* 7
12 Girard 7
19 Eisenhower* 7
26 at Iroquois* 7
2 Corry 7
*Region 2 games

Saturday: Warren

– 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 6th, 2011

Union City Bears
Coach (season): Joe Sanford (1st season)
2010 overall record: 5-5
2010 region record (place): 5-3 (tied for third)
2010 playoff results: Lost 33-0 to Farrell in the District 10 Class A quarterfinals.
Top players lost: Greg Reinke, Ryan Myers, Luke Hetrick, Shane Rankin
Top returning players: Justin Bengel, Austin Shettler, Cole Lewis, Curtis Brown, William Manross, Shane Russell, Tim Vargo, Kyle Hetrick, Coltin Warner, Tyler Lindsley, Jarad Brooks, Jeff Burger, Josh Reinke
Assistant coaches: Randy Gunther, Paul Yoculan, Dan Clark, Brian Patten, Josh Kerns and Ray Salmon
Outlook: Union City looked for a new direction in the offseason and hired long-time coach Joe Sanford. Sanford has been a head coach at Corry and Seneca as well as an assistant and defensive coordinator at McDowell. His first priority is to get to know the team and start developing a gameplan that will work. Sanford hasn’t coached on the Class A level and will have to get used to a different style of football.

The Bears lost a few key players from last year’s playoff team, including Greg Reinke, Ryan Myers, Kurt Hetrick and Shane Rankin. Union City has plenty of experience, however. Justin Bengel, Austin Shettler, Cole Lewis, Curtis Brown, William Manross and Jeff Burger are back to anchor the offensive and defensive lines, while Tim Vargo, Coltin Warner and Shane Russell could compete for the starting quarterback job. Kyle Hetrick and Tyler Lindsley are back to compete for carries in the backfield along with Jarred Brooks and Josh Reinke.

Union City will be in for some changes in the offseason and could sneak up on some teams under Sanford. The Bears have a huge test to start the season at Lakeview before an interesting home opener against Youngsville. Union City’s chances for the region title and a playoff spot should be determined in October with games against Cambridge Springs, Maplewood, Iroquois and Mercyhurst Prep.

2 at Lakeview 7
9 Youngsville* 7
17 at East 7
23 Cochranton* 7
30 at Saegertown* 7
7 Cambridge Springs* 7
14 Maplewood* 7
21 at Iroquois* 7
28 Mercyhurst Prep* 7
4 at Eisenhower* 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.

Sunday: Warren

– Tom Reisenweber

Posted: August 23rd, 2010

Union City will try to regroup this season after losing Jared Burger, District 10′s top rusher during the 2009 regular season. Coach Brian Patten will look for leadership from quarterback Ryan Myers, who was second on the team in rushing last season with 681 yards. Another running prospect is Greg Reinke. Check out the preview:

Posted in: District 10, Football
Posted: November 7th, 2009

After reviewing the statistics and overall performances, here are our nominees for the Breakout Player of the Week.  In an oddity, receivers dominate this weekend’s poll.

Vote in the poll at upper right. We’ve added one player from Friday and several players from Saturday.

The winner will be announced Tuesday on the Varsity blog and will be featured in Friday’s sports edition.

Josh Niswonger, General McLane: 4 receptions, 49 yards; TD catches of 10, 18 and 5 yards, including the game-winner in the closing seconds.

Courtney Harden-Pullium, Strong Vincent: 4 receptions, 170 yards, including a 64-yard TD catch

Josh Rzepecki, Harbor Creek: 9 receptions, 125 yards; TD catches of 3, 3, 13 and 7 yards.

Braidy Westfall, Corry: 3 receptions, 132 yards, including TD catches of 80 and 49 yards. Also caught a two-point conversion pass.

Justin Wiley, Cathedral Prep: 8 carries, 91 yards; TD runs of 6 and 49 yards, 12-yard TD receptions — all in the first half Saturday

Ryan Myers, Union City: 80-yard TD reception, 74-yard kickoff return for a TD, 8-for-12 passing for 106 yards, 2-point conversion pass

Dan Odem, Farrell: 20-yard interception return for TD, 5-of-8 passing for 85 yards and and four touchdowns, 11-yard TD run

Chris Kurzik, Mercyhurst Prep: 18 rushes for 122 yards and a TD.

Matt Stapleford, Warren: 16-of-24 passing for 227 yards and 2 TDs, two-point conversion pass, TD runs of 3 and 10 yards

Note: North East’s Jimmy Bailey and Mercyhurst Prep’s Aaron Horton were previous winners and were not eligible to win this week.

Posted in: District 10, Football
Posted: October 30th, 2009

Here are some nominees for the Breakout Player of the Week. Remember, the winner will be honored in Friday’s edition of the Times-News. Vote for your favorite in the poll at the upper right.

Let us know if we missed a worthy candidate. We’re limiting nominees to one per school, and no winner can be nominated again.

Gary Brown, East: 11-of-21 passing 174 yards; 17 rushes, 127 yards, TD

Jared Burger, Union City: 24 rushes, 176 yards; TD runs of 4, 10 and 54 yards

Corey Dunton, Cambridge Springs: 65 yards rushing, 2 TDs, including game-winner in third overtime; 3 receptions for 33 yards; 77-yard kickoff return for a TD

Kevin Green, Strong Vincent: 9 rushes, 156 yards; TD runs of 80 and 30 yards

Richie Kolesar, Fort LeBoeuf: 13 rushes, 92 yards; TD runs of 1 and 34 yards

Jared Lane, Fairview: 17 rushes, 114 yards, TD in return from hamstring injury

Cory Lee, General McLane: 27 rushes, 180 yards

Justin Wiley, Cathedral Prep: 15 rushes, 108 yards; TD runs of 1, 3, 3, 5 and 27 yards

Posted in: District 10, Football
Posted: October 25th, 2009

Fairview’s Peter Jackson ran for 249 yards — his third consecutive game with at least 227 yards rushing — to lead District 10 rushers. Strong Vincent’s Brandon Akins-Jones scored four touchdowns in a win over East. Those were among the highlighted top performances Friday.

We’ve added two players from Saturday’s games — Iroquois’ Jake Szoszorek and General McLane’s Nick Lombardo.

Vote in the poll at upper right through Monday night. The winner will be featured in Friday’s sports section. Here at the Week 8 nominees.

Peter Jackson, Fairview: 33 rushes, 249 yards, 77-yard TD run; now has 714 yards in his past three games and 1,129 yards on the season.

Brandon Akins-Jones, Strong Vincent: 15 rushes, 186 yards, TD runs of 66, 1 and 44 yards; eturned a fumble 92 yards for a TD.

Scottie Frisina, Corry: 7-of-17 passing, 135 yards, 2 TDs; 16 rushes, 152 yards, 2 TDs

Greg Garmon, McDowell: 8 rushes, 160 yards, TD runs of 64 and 3 yards; returned a kickoff 95 yards for a TD

Aaron Horton, Mercyhurst Prep: 16 rushes, 140 yards, TD runs of 59 and 5 yards; now has 1,117 yards on the season

Jared Burger, Union City: 25 rushes, 117 yards, TD runs of 11, 10 and 10 yards; now has District 10-leading 1,218 yards

Justin Wiley, Cathedral Prep: 8 rushes, 92 yards, TD runs of 1 and 51 yards; 2 receptions, 70 yards; returned punt 59 yards for a TD

Jake Szoszorek, Iroquois: Rushed 23 times for 226 yards and hade TD runs of 5, 6, and 9 yards; also became the Braves’ all-time leading tackler.

Nick Lombardo, General McLane: Rushed 10 times for 75 yards and 2 TDs; completed both of his pass attempts for 30 yards; returned an interception 43 yards for a TD.

Posted in: District 10, Football

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