The Herald, Sharon, Pa.


December 21, 2013


MERCER COUNTY AREA — They come in different shapes and sizes, but Sharon High’s players share one common characteristic: Each of them, at any point in time, is the fastest player on the floor.

Sharon shed a slow start — trailing by 13 points at the opening quarter’s close — before its energy engulfed the Eagles of Grove City, resulting in a 75-63 District 10 Region 5-AAA win Friday night.

“I think our kids are too young to understand exactly what playing from behind means,” assessed Sharon skipper Jason Rankin. “We play fast, so we can score points quickly ...

“We’re a little bit immature,” Rankin related, noting, “We could’ve put ’em away a couple of times. But (the Eagles) kept playin’. And, we’ve gotta get better.”

With Spencer Marnich mustering 16 first-half markers, Grove City garnered a 36-35 margin at intermission on Kaiden Young’s pair of free throws with 10.3 ticks remaining.

From that point, however, the Tigers tallied 40 points in the closing 16 minutes. Jason Austin annexed 11 of his 15 points during the 3rd period and Carnell Hawkins had a half-dozen more, offsetting Derek Turner’s 10 tallies as the teams were tied at 54 through 3 quarters.

During the decisive 4th frame Sharon surged, led by ’Bray Jennings’ 8 points, Mark Henry’s handful, and Austin, who added 3 more. Conversely, the Eagles ended by missing 10 of their final 13 floor shots and 6 of 8 free-throw attempts.

Also, despite a 35-25 Eagles’ edge on the backboards, the Grovers gave up the ball 29 times to Sharon’s swarming traps. Austin’s long-range marksmanship aside — 4 second-half 3-point fielders — the Tigers’ transition buckets saw Sharon shoot 27 for 56 (48.2 percent).

“Listen, they’ll tell you, all I do is talk about runnin’,” Rankin related. “I make ’em run all the time. We said this year we wouldn’t have the size, so we’d need to be in condition. They bought into that, and we certainly use ninety-four feet when we play.”

Grove City (2-1, 5-1) was led by Marnich’s 18-point, 14-rebound double-double. But after converting 8 of 11 first-half floor shots including his first 6 in succession — many on put-backs or layins, courtesy of Danny Torok passes — Marnich made just 1 of only 3 second-half attempts. Also for the Eagles, Turner tallied 16 and Foster Reznor rifled in 14, while Torok distributed 7 assists.

However Turner was taken down on a drive with 3:42 remaining and appeared to injure his ribs. Though he ultimately returned, he missed his only 2 attempts. The Eagles enjoyed 21-for-38 (55.2) shooting during the first 3 quarters, but ended 24 for 51 (47.0) and an uncharacteristic 11-for-19 from the line.

Sharon (2-0, 4-1) showed balanced scoring, including Austin (15), Hawkins (11), Henry and Jennings (10 apiece), and Jamal Waller (9). The latter was DQ’d on personal fouls with 5:50 left. Henry and Hawkins handed out 9 and 5 assists, respectively. And no player from Sharon shot more than 11 times.

The Tigers have tallied 4 consecutive triumphs and have lost just once at home during Rankin’s year-plus Tigers’ tenure.

“(Grove City) is a veteran club, well coached, and they were comin’ in playing well. We just held serve. We didn’t win anything (Friday) night, and certainly they didn’t lose anything,” Rankin remarked, adding, “But I think we took a step toward the maturation of a team. We’ll watch the film — and I’ll blast ’em — and they’ll probably run a little bit for all the goofy plays they made.

“But I’m proud of them, ’cause we just play hard. Our kids aren’t always the smartest ’cause they’re young, but we play hard, and I like that,” Rankin admitted.

“I’m so proud of the fact is, one of our hallmarks we have right now is we’re thirteen-and-one at home ... and we use it to our advantage,” Rankin continued, cautioning, “but we also know, too, that we’ve gotta go to Grove City, Oil City, Slippery Rock (plus Shenango Valley rivals Hickory and Farrell), so we’ve gotta be ready to go through there, too.” — By Ed Farrell, Herald assistant sports editor.


ä Reynolds 63, Mercer 59 — At Transfer, even an ugly Christmas sweater display could not divert attention from the Raiders’ resurgence.

Reynolds roared to a 30-26 halftime lead, then the Raiders rode Cory Woods’ pair of third-quarter triples and Jake Leipheimer’s 6-for-8 free-throw marksmanship. Also, Garhett Frable — before fouling out — fired in 4 of 5 freebies.

“It was an unbelievable atmosphere,” Reynolds Head Coach Dan Kilgore confided. “A good back-and-forth game the whole way.“

Frable’s 21-point, 13-rebound double-double led Reynolds (1-0, 5-0) to the Region 2-AA opening win, while Woods and Leipheimer lent 13 and 10 points, respectively, and Kyle McConnell collected another 10 caroms and 10 tallies for a twin-killing.

For Mercer (0-1, 2-3), Jon Scheidhauer hit for 15, Nate Guiler garnered 14 and  Jake Schmid scored 12 though the Steads staged a 33-all 2nd-half stalemate.

This is Reynolds roundball program’s best start since the Russell Conley-Chris Laverty era, but Kilgore confided,

“I wouldn’t go that far. I’d like to go that far.

“But we’re well-rounded,” he added. “You look at our scoring, our starters scored 21, 13, 10, 10, and 8 (Jake Reimold). It revoles around Garhett, but all our guys can score.”

ä West Middlesex 69, Sharpsville 34 — At Sharpsville, the defending District 10 champion Big Reds showed they are again a force to be reckoned with.

Trey Staunch, 6-3 junior strongman, dominated with a 28-point performance in the Region 3-AA opener for the two clubs.Staunch is nearing the career century mark and unofficially has 976 points in three years at West Middlesex (1-0, 3-3).

No further details or boxscore was submitted by either team prior to deadline.

Text Only
  • NFL NOTEBOOK: Ex-Sharon star Austin hopes to spark Lions' defense

    THE TALENTED — albeit underachieving — Detroit Lions commence camp July 27 in Allen Park, Mich. as the National Football League prepares for the 2014 season.

    July 21, 2014

  • Fighting cancer Racing to fight cancer

    Former Hickory High athlete Amanda Budzowski is on the run — the run to raise money to fight cancer.
    Budzowski is part of Team in Training, an organization that has raised more than $1.4 billion for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society since forming in 1988. Her division is known as IRONTEAM and she is currently training for the 140.6-mile Ironman triathlon in Mont Tremblant, Canada, in August.

    July 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPORTVIEW: Pirates, Indians need fast start after All-Star break

    SO FAR, so good. I’m referring to the start of the Pittsburgh Pirates and Cleveland Indians after the All-Star break on Friday night.
    Both teams rallied to win. The Buccos beat the Colorado Joints — err, I mean Rockies — by coming from behind in the 8th inning. Since they legalized marijuana sales in that state, it gave new meaning to John Denver’s song “Rocky Mountain High.”

    July 20, 2014

  • Sky high Rutters earn spot in national motocross event

    The brother-sister racing duo of Elijah and Dannah Rutter of Mercer are set to travel to Hurricane Mills, Tenn., to compete soon in the prestigious 33rd annual Rocky Mountain ATV/MC AMA Amateur National Motocross Championships presented by AMSOIL at Loretta Lynn Ranch.
    Elijah, 18, and Dannah, 16, earned a ticket to the event with their performances at qualifiers and then regionals and are among the top 5 percent of riders in the U.S. Overall, 20,000 hopefuls from across the U.S. competed and there are only 1,446 qualifying spots at nationals.

    July 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Sharon Football scramble Notebook: Sharon football greats meet, reunite at inaugural golf scramble

    Mid-July, with the temperature 80-plus degrees at Avalon at Buhl Country Club; however, it felt like a fall, football Friday.
    The inaugural Sharon Football Boosters 4-man golf scramble took place recently, and served as a Who’s Who in the Tigers’ triumphant tradition.

    July 13, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPORTVIEW: All is right with the world - LeBron has come home!

    HAPPY DAYS are here again. The prodigal child has returned!
    The announcement that “King James” is returning to Cleveland has created a level of euphoria not seen since the Browns won the city’s last major sport championship a couple of years ago.
    What’s that? Oh, yeah — make that 50 years ago (1964).

    July 13, 2014

  • LeBron James Full text of LeBron's essay in SI

    LeBron James announced his return to the Cleveland Cavaliers on Friday in an essay that he wrote for Sports Illustrated. The following is the full text of that essay.

    July 12, 2014 1 Photo

  • Snyder, Gordon, Popatak named to All-State team

    Grove City High’s David Gordon, Sharpsville’s Greg Popatak and Lakeview’s Logan Snyder recently were named to the Pennsylvania High School Baseball Coaches Association all-state team.
    Synder was selected 1st-Team in Class A as a designated-hitter, while Gordon was honorably-mentioned in Class AAA and Popatak similarly was honored in AA. Gordon gained his laurels as a pitcher; Popatak as a 3rd baseman.

    July 10, 2014

  • Oprah lands first interview with Jerry Sandusky's adopted son, Matthew

    Matthew Sandusky, the adopted son of former Penn State assistant coach Jerry Sandusky, is breaking his silence for the first time since his father's 2012 conviction on 45 counts of child sexual abuse, sitting down with Oprah to tell his story.

    July 8, 2014

  • County champs Little League Tournaments

    Sharon won the District 2 Major Division (12-year-olds) Championship, while Greenville 9-10 and West Middlesex 11 teams notched tournament victories in recent action.

    Hermitage Brennan Chiropractic won the Mercer County 14-under championship recently.

    Following are game reports:

    July 5, 2014 1 Photo

  • John Cook The First Tee of Sharon celebrates 15th anniversary

    Professional golf star John Cook has received many honors and awards in his illustrious career, but probably none mean as much as those similar to the one he received Monday afternoon at The First Tee of Sharon.
    During a special ceremony to celebrate the 15th anniversary of the local program, a permanent plaque was unveiled in his honor describing the contributions he has made to junior golf.

    July 1, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPORTVIEW: John Cook here Monday for First Tee; other celebs on July 11

    THE RETURN of Tiger Woods to a PGA event sparked a lot of interest this past week. The return of John Cook to Buhl Farm Golf Course Monday will do the same locally.
    Cook, a standout on the Champions Tour and outstanding TV golf analyst, will conduct a clinic at 11 a.m. Monday at the course to help celebrate the 15th anniversary of The First Tee of Sharon program.
    It is open to the public at no charge.

    June 29, 2014

  • Tri-Athletes Hickory honors Tri-Athletes

    Hickory High honored its 2013-14 tri-athletes in a recent ceremony, the latest installment in a program that began in 2003-04.
    Fifty student-athletes (grades 9-12) were cited for having competed in at least one sport in the fall, winter and spring while maintaining a minimum B (85 percent) grade-point-average during the first three 9-week grading periods of the  academic year.

    June 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPORTVIEW: Ex-Greenville man to enter Bedford County Hall

    HUGHEY TATE was the greatest baseball player that ever lived — hitting 10,000 home runs and never making an out in 50 years on the diamond.
    OK, that’s not true of course. But that’s the way Hughey would have told it before bursting into laughter.
    Tate, a Greenville man who was as good at spinning a yarn as well as he was in hitting home runs, will be inducted posthumously into the Bedford County (Pa.) Hall of Fame Saturday. Some of his relatives from this area will attend the ceremonies.

    June 22, 2014

  • Trophy time Wilson wins Herald-Tamie Jr. golf crown

    It was a case of family history trumping golfing history!
    Hickory High golfer Billy Colbert had a chance to become only the second player ever to win the Herald-Tam O’Shanter Golf Championship four times. But he missed the final round of the tourney Wednesday along with his brother Colbert to attend his great-grandma’s funeral in Pittsburgh.
    “I kind of wish he was here,” said the 2014 champion Jacob Wilson, a Kennedy Catholic High player who lost in a sudden-death playoff to Colbert last year. “But you play whoever is here. And in golf, you play against yourself too.”

    June 19, 2014 1 Photo

Top 25 (AP Poll)
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter