Summer Huddle – Conneaut

   June 28, 2013 1:34 pm    0

 

Elijah Anderton rushed for 1,100 yards and 11 touchdowns in 2012.

Pat Gould

Jon Onderko

Jace Pardee

Conneaut Eagles
Coach: Pat Gould (9th season, 51-33)
2012 overall record: 6-5
2012 region record: 2-4 (fifth)
2012 playoff results: Lost to Warren 21-12 in the District 10 Class AAA quarterfinals.

Top players lost: Tyler Bartlett, Matt Mihoci, Brandon Sherman, Darryl Miller, Dan Grudoski, Kyle Arkwright

Top returning players: Elijah Anderton, Hunter Merritt, Jon Onderko, Jace Pardee, Brennan Miller, Chris Richardson

Assistant coaches: Bill Stevenson, Todd Greenawalt, John Waterman, Doug Williams, Donny Zarembinski, Jason Schell

Outlook: Conneaut was able to deal with tough circumstances last year and make the District 10 Class AAA playoffs. The Eagles consolidated only four months before the season began and it was a rough start. After beating Girard 36-16, Conneaut lost three straight games. The Eagles recovered to blow out Conneaut (Ohio) 51-12 to spark a three-game winning streak. Although Conneaut finished in fifth place in Region 1, the Eagles made their way to the playoffs and came close to upsetting Warren. With a year of experience, Conneaut will look to compete for the Region 1 title and return to the postseason. The Eagles will have to replace graduates Tyler Bartlett, Matt Mihoci, Brandon Sherman, Darryl Miller, Kyle Arkwright and Dan Grudoski. Grudoski and Miller were voted to the all-region second team at offensive line, and Arkwright was a second-team defensive lineman. Bartlett was voted to the second team at defensive back and was Conneaut’s fourth-leading rusher at 152 yards and two touchdowns. Bartlett was also the Eagles’ top receiver with 18 catches for 175 yards and five touchdowns. Sherman is also a big loss on the outside as he had 10 catches for 112 yards.

Coach Pat Gould said that no starting spot is safe in camp but one of Conneaut’s biggest needs is establishing new wide receivers. Hunter Merritt was third last year with six catches for 95 yards and Chris Richardson caught six passes for 67 yards. Richardson is back at tight end and is a valuable blocker on the offensive line, while Merritt could be in the mix at quarterback as well. Merritt threw for 70 yards and two touchdowns along with Jon Onderko, who threw for 427 yards and six touchdowns. Both players are back and should find a spot on the field either at quarterback or another position. Onderko ran for 646 yards and 11 touchdowns, and Merritt ran for 697 yards and eight touchdowns. Also back in the backfield is junior Elijah Anderton, who ran for 1,100 yards and 11 touchdowns and was voted to the second team at running back. Jace Pardee returns after being voted to the all-region second team at linebacker, while Brennan Miller is back to compete for a starting spot at wide receiver.

Linemen Kris Norris, Brian Lipps and Taylor Williams could step up to varsity and contribute right away along with wide receiver/defensive back Sam Lenhart. Other starters returning this season include lineman Jake Gutierrez and Shane Goodman along with Jarred Hannold on offense and linebacker Clay Bortner and defensive back Justin Ledford. Conneaut will open the season at home against Girard before a brutal September stretch. The Eagles will host defending District 10 Class A champion Sharpsville and hit the road to take on Lakeview, West Middlesex and General McLane. Conneaut also gets a rivalry showdown at Meadville on Nov. 1. The Eagles were able to gather themselves last year and put together a solid season. This fall, Conneaut is looking to become a region and district contender.

Schedule
August
30 Girard 7
September
6 at Lakeview* 7
13 Sharpsville* 7
20 at West Middlesex* 7
27 at General McLane 7
October
4 at Mercer* 7
11 at Eisenhower 7
18 Farrell* 7
25 Kennedy Catholic* 7
November
1 at Meadville 7
*Region 1 games

Saturday: Corry
–Tom Reisenweber

 

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