Friday night served as a microcosm of the 2013-14 season for the Farrell High and Sharon boys’ basketball teams. Sharon started strong, but ultimately faded as Farrell forged a 74-39 District 10 Region 5-AAA rout.
At E.J. McCluskey Gymnasium on Senior Night, Dewayne Burns, Ike Jones, Tyrone Archie, Chris James and Tionté Davis went out in style for the Steelers.
Burns bucketed a dozen points and James joined him in double digits with 10, and they dished out 4 and 3 assists, respectively. Archie annexed a game-high 11 rebounds, while Jones joined in with another 10 as Farrell forged a 51-33 edge on the glass. Jones also dished out 4 dimes when Sharon attempted to double-down on him in the post..
“I was happy for the seniors. They did a nice job (Friday) night; they’re whole careers they’ve done a nice job, all five of those guys.” summarized Steelers’ skipper Roland Shannonhouse. “I can’t say enough about them. They’ve been the backbone of this program for the last four years, and I’m happy they went out on a win like that.”
The visiting Tigers took an 11-10 lead after the 1st frame. But James’ right-wing jumper 8 seconds into the 2nd stanza staked the Steelers to a 12-11 edge, and Farrell outscored Sharon 62-28 over the game’s final 24 minutes.
The Steelers’ seniors were bolstered by juniors Jamel Brown and Clifton McNair. Brown boasted a game-high 19 points — 14 of which occurred during Farrell’s 28-point 3rd period — and McNair maximized his minutes, mustering a 16-point, 11-rebound double-double off the bench.
Led by McNair’s 8-for-12 marksmanship and Brown’s 6-for-13 effort that included 2 treys, Farrell (12-3, 18-3) finished 29 for 64 from the field (45.3 percent). Also, the Steelers committed only 7 miscues.
Jones exited with 5:59 remaining with a bone bruise to his right leg, but Shannonhouse said, “He showed that senior leadership, and it was contagious. Tyrone played strong in there, Dewayne played consistent, even Tionté got in there and banged around a little bit, got us on the glass.”
Sharon’s strong start was short-circuited by 10-for-40 shooting and 13 Tigers’ turnovers during the final 24 minutes. Similarly, Sharon started the season 7-2, but concluded the campaign 6-10 in the region and 9-13 overall.
“At the time we were seven-and-two we were doing things the right way, and then we kind’ve lost our way,” summarized 2nd-season Sharon skipper Jason Rankin. “We kind’ve found selfishness, jealously, found guys that didn’t want to do the things that got us to seven-and-two.
“They’re young, and sometimes they make the critical mistake in thinking that once you get to a certain level, you’ve made it. Honestly — especially in this (region) — once you get to a certain level you’ve got about six more levels to go,” Rankin related. “I don’t think we kept improving. ... I think we kind’ve ‘masked’ ourselves with different plays and defenses to make up for deficiencies, instead of just getting better.
“From seven-and-two to nine-and-thirteen is just not a good coaching job, and we just didn’t get better. We have to get better next year, and it has to start with me,” Rankin emphasized.
Rankin, reflecting on the season and a possible tipping point, cited several factors:
“It was a combination, and some things you couldn’t control. The fact that eight of our last nine games were on the road, that didn’t help out; the fact we played Farrell and Canfield back-to-back nights didn’t help. But when they put the schedule in front of you, you’ve gotta play it.
“Some people got a little bit jealous of others, some people got a little bit lazy, and we just didn’t push the right buttons, which sometimes you just don’t. We just didn’t do what it took, we didn’t figure it out,” Rankin related.
“It’s only the third time in twenty-three years that I haven’t been part of a playoff team as a coach. I just didn’t have the answers But I can tell you what: I’m gonna spend a whole lotta time in the offseason doing whatever it takes, leaving no stone unturned to get better and be back next year.”
Sharon seniors included Mark Henry, Carnell Hawkins, Trenton Mosley and Romondo Oatis. Junior ’Bray Jennings tallied 10 points as the lone Tigers’ double-digit scorer, while Henry handed out a handful of assists.
“ ... They worked hard. We had leadership from ‘Hawk’ and Mark — great kids and good students, people who will have careers, futures, and maybe give back to their community if they choose to come back here, and I’m happy for that,” Rankin remarked. “Romondo Oatis hadn’t played in high school, but came and worked every day in practice, and Trenton Mosley took a backseat to some guys. As a football player, he didn’t play as much basketball, but I appreciate him.”
For Farrell, the future extends to Monday night’s regular-season finale makeup game against George Junior Republic, with a possible share of the region championship with Oil City (which faces Franklin this afternoon) on the line.
“It’s an important game as far as the (playoff) seeding ... but more importantly for us, we need the confidence,” Shannonhouse said. “We need to be able to know that, whomever comes out on that floor, we can compete with them and beat them.
“Going into the playoffs with a victory would do us a world of good, plus, hopefully we’ll be coming off that injury bug (Jones and leading scorer Malik Miller, who sustained a broken bone in his shooting hand), get in game shape, and carry it through the playoffs,” Shannonhouse summarized. — By Ed Farrell, Herald assistant sports editor.
ä Hickory 75, George Junior Republic 36 — At “The Hive” in Hermitage, coach Geoff Evans’ Hornets (11-5, 16-5) rolled past the Tigers (6-9, 9-11) in the Region 5-AAA clash.
Hickory led 13-10 after the opening 8 minutes and 28-24 at the break. They pulled away in the 2nd half as they outscored GJR 24-4 in the 3rd quarter and 23-8 in the 4th.
Anthony Cannone scored 15 points to lead Hickory while Aaron Conley and Donte Green had 11 points each. Andrew Pryts had 8 rebounds while Nick Tantuo tallied 7 boards and Green had 6.
Ron Pearson paced GJR with 11 points.
ä West Middlesex 80, Wilmington 43 — At New Wilmington, the Region 2-AA champion Big Reds finished the regular season with a perfect 12-0 record in the region and 17-5 overall with the rout of the Hounds (7-5, 12-10).
“It’s nice to win our third region title in a row,” said WM coach Chad Mild. “We are just looking forward to the competition that we’ll face in the playoffs now.”
Trey Staunch fired in 26 points to lead the Big Reds, which included 10-of-11 marksmanship from the charity stripe.
Also for WM, Isaac Williams drained 6 treys for 18 points, Christian Porterfield bucketed 17 and Ryan Dogan added 10 markers.
Rocco Fagan led the way for Wilmington with 13 points.
ä Mercer 58, Lakeview 44 — At Stoneboro, the Mustangs and Sailors were knotted at 20 at halftime, but the Mustangs (7-5, 12-10) outscored Lakeview 18-8 in the 3rd quarter to pull away for the Region 2-AA victory.
Jake Schmid fired in a season-high 24 points for Mercer, Logan Clarke bucketed 15 and John Scheidhauer added 11 markers.
Austin Rice led Lakeview (2-10, 8-14) on the scoreboard with 13 points and Matt Partridge tallied 10.
ä Greenville 80, Sharpsville 72 — On Senior Night at Sharpsville, Blue Devils’ seniors Kyle Kennedy and Sage Barringer had big nights, but the Trojans rallied to post the Region 2-AA win.
Sharpsville led 18-13 after the opening quarter, but the Trojans cut the lead to 30-27 at halftime. Greenville (3-9, 9-12) then outscored the Devils 27-17 in the 3rd quarter and 26-25 in the final frame.
Tyler Fattman scored 22 points for Greenville, Luke Houpt tallied 18 points, 8 assists and 6 rebounds and Ben Reiser added 14 markers.
For Sharpsville (4-8, 8-14), Kennedy drained 5 treys en route to 33 points and Barringer scored 29.
ä Grove City 60, Central Tech 55 — At Erie, the Eagles (15-7) trailed 12-8 after the opening quarter and 26-21 at halftime, but rallied in the 2nd half to notch the non-region win over the Falcons (12-10).
Derek Turner fired in 5 treys for GC and finished with 25 points while Foster Reznor contributed 20 markers.
Josh Wells (18), Kareem Ferguson (13) and Justice Davis (12) scored in double digits for Central Tech.
ä Brookfield 68, South Range 45 — At Brookfield, the host Warriors were led to a wire-to-wire win by Davon Sims’ game-high 16-point performance that included 4 buckets from beyond the arc.
Also for Brookfield (12-7), Nate Johnson joined in double figure with a dozen, while Caleb Hunkus, Derrick Dickson and Seth Wallace evenly divided 27 additional points. Brian Hiner handed out 4 assists, while Hunkus had 4 steals, also, for Brookfield bench boss Bill Kovach.
South Range was led by Wilson and Anderson, with 12 and 11 points, respectively.
The Warriors will journey to Newton Falls today for a makeup game.
ä Wilmington 55, Greenville 25 — At New Wilmington Thursday night, the Lady ’Hounds wrapped up Region 2-AA play with an 8-4 record and 15-7 ledger overall.
Alanna Elliott scored 16 points for Wilmington, Tessa Sikora tallied 15 and Cassidy Marett registered 10.
Jillian Herrick led the Lady Trojans (5-7, 8-12) with 11 points.
ä Mathews 46, Brookfield 43 — At Vienna Center Thursday night, the visiting Lady Warriors (15-7) held a slim 30-29 lead at the end of the 3rd quarter, but the Lady Mustangs (8-14) outscored Brookfield 17-13 in the final frame to earn the win.
Dayna Ellis fired in 5 treys en route to 25 points to lead Mathews and Natalie Halavick bucketed 14.
Brooke Hiner scored 14 to pace Brookfield and Delany Saxton tallied a dozen markers.
SHARON 11 7 11 10 39
FARRELL 10 18 27 19 74
SHARON — Henry 1-2-4-4, Austin 3-0-0-6, Jennings 4-0-0-10, Stovall 3-0-0-8, Seay 2-1-1-25, Hawkins 2-1-2-5, Magestro 0-0-0-0, Mosley 0-0-0-0, Phillips 1-0-0-3, Oatis 0-0-0-0, Hopson 1-0-0-2. 3-pt. goals: Jennings 2, Stovall 2, Phillips 1. Totals: 15-4-8-39.
FARRELL — Davis 0-0-0-0, Burns 4-3-3-12, Jones 3-2-6-8, Archie 2-1-3-5, James 4-2-2-10, Brown 6-4-6-19, McNair 8-0-0-16, Newell 0-0-0-0, Phillips 0-0-0-0, McCoy 2-0-2-4. 3-pt. goals: Brown 3, Burns 1. Totals: 29-12-22-74.
JV — Farrell, 47-43. Marcus McCoy 15 points for Farrell; Drew Magestro 20, Brian Johnson 12 for Sharon.
GJR 10 14 4 8 36
HICKORY 13 15 24 23 75
GEORGE JUNIOR REPUBLIC — Hogg 1-2-2-5, Pearson 3-5-8-11, Oliver 2-4-7-8, Baker 1-4-4-7, Holloway 1-1-2-3, Gibson 0-2-2-2. 3-pt. goals: Hogg 1, Baker 1. Totals: 8-18-25-36.
HICKORY — R. Passalinqua 2-0-0-5, Mastrian 1-2-2-5, Conley 4-3-4-11, A. Cannone 4-4-4-15, Green 4-1-1-11, Pryts 4-1-2-9, Rhoades 2-0-0-4, Tantuo 2-1-2-6, N. Cannone 3-1-1-9. 3-pt. goals: A. Cannone 3, Green 2, N. Cannone 2, R. Passalinqua 1, Mastrian 1, Tantuo 1. Totals: 26-13-16-75.
JV — GJR, 50-47. Nick Cannone 12 points for Hickory.
GROVE CITY 8 13 17 22 60
CENTRAL TECH 12 14 18 11 55
GROVE CITY — Marnich 2-0-0-4, Turner 8-4-9-25, Torok 1-3-4-5, Record 1-0-0-2, Reznor 6-7-10-20, Polkabla 1-0-0-2, Marlowe 1-0-0-2. 3-pt. goals: Turner 5, Reznor 1. Totals: 20-14-23-60.
CENTRAL TECH — Wells 7-1-4-18, Ferguson 5-1-1-13, Davis 5-0-0-12, Brinson 2-1-1-6, Tracy 3-0-0-6. 3-pt. goals: Wells 3, Ferguson 2, Davis 2, Brinson 1. Totals: 22-3-6-55.
JV — Central Tech, 38-28.
MIDDLESEX 16 20 21 23 80
WILMINGTON 5 11 16 11 43
WEST MIDDLESEX — A. Long 1-0-0-3, D. Long 0-0-0-0, C. Porterfield 8-1-2-17, Palmer 0-0-0-0, Roberts 0-0-0-0, Williams 6-0-2-18, Bender 0-0-0-0, Burger 0-0-0-0, Bachetti 0-0-0-0, J. Porterfield 2-2-2-6, Staunch 8-10-11-26, Powell 0-0-0-0, Murray 0-0-0-0, Dogan 3-2-2-10. 3-pt. goals: Williams 6, Dogan 2, A. Long 1. Totals: 28-15-19-80.
WILMINGTON — Bloise 1-1-2-3, Hilliard 2-0-0-4, Fagan 5-3-4-13, Smith 1-0-2-3, Danus 1-0-0-2, Brumbaugh 3-0-2-7, DeMedal 3-2-4-9, Peoples 1-0-0-2. 3-pt. goals: Smith 1, Brumbaugh 1, DeMedal 1. Totals: 17-6-14-43.
JV — WM, 62-50. Travis Roberts 19, Mike Bachetti 14 for WM. Derek Nichols 24 for Wilmington.
MERCER 17 3 18 20 58
LAKEVIEW 10 10 8 16 44
MERCER — Schmid 6-9-10-24, Clarke 5-4-8-15, Guiler 0-2-4-2, Fowler 0-5-8-5, Leonard 0-1-2-1, Scheidhauer 5-1-3-11. 3-pt. goals: Schmid 3, Clarke 1. Totals: 16-22-35-58.
LAKEVIEW — Partridge 4-2-2-10, VanDusen 1-2-4-4, Richael 0-1-2-1, A. Rice 5-2-3-13, J. Drozynski 1-1-2-3, Palutro 0-0-0-0, Doddo 1-2-2-4, B. Rice 4-0-0-8, Armstrong 0-1-2-1. 3-pt. goal: A. Rice 1. Totals: 15-1-11-17-44.
JV — Lakeview, 43-21.
GREENVILLE 13 14 27 26 80
SHARPSVILLE 18 12 17 25 72
GREENVILLE — Fattman 8-4-5-22, Houpt 5-5-5-18, VanAken 3-1-2-7, A. Jones 1-3-6-5, Reiser 5-3-3-14, McErlane 2-2-3-7, Emmett 2-3-4-7, Zavala 0-0-0-0. 3-pt. goals: Houpt 3, Fattman 2, Reiser 1, McErlane 1. Totals: 26-22-29-80.
SHARPSVILLE — Lipo 1-0-0-2, Kennedy 13-2-3-33, Morris 0-0-0-0, Fyffe 1-0-0-2, Barringer 11-5-7-29, Keck 1-0-0-2, Smith 2-0-0-4, Hogue 0-0-0-0. 3-pt. goals: Kennedy 5, Barringer 2. Totals: 29-7-9-72.
JV — Greenville, 56-35. Scott Simcoe 16, Ethan Reiser 11 for Greenville.
SOUTH RANGE 15 5 9 10 45
BROOKFIELD 18 19 12 19 68
SOUTH RANGE — Anderson 3-4-4-10, Wiery 1-0-0-3, Venetti 4-0-2-12, Dunham 0-0-0-0, Wilson 5-1-1-11, Collar 0-0-0-0, Matus 3-0-0-7, Rutledge 0-0-0-0. 3-pt. goals: Venetti 4, Wiery 1, Matus 1. Totals: 16-7-9-45.
BROOKFIELD — Kraml 3-1-2-9, Hunkus 3-3-4-9, Filipovich 0-0-0-0, Dickson 2-5-6-9, Johnson 5-1-2-12, Tarver 0-1-2-1, Sims 6-0-0-16, Wallace 3-3-5-9, Hiner 2-0-0-4. 3-pt. goals: Sims 4, Kraml 1, Johnson 1. Totals: 24-14-21-68.
JV — South Range, 49-29.
GREENVILLE 2 3 6 14 25
WILMINGTON 13 11 13 18 55
GREENVILLE — Fagley 1-0-0-2, Herrick 5-1-2-11, Leary 3-3-6-9, Beilstein 0-0-0-0, Fenton 1-1-2-3, Williams 0-0-0-0. Totals: 10-5-10-25.
WILMINGTON — Sikora 6-3-4-15, Elliott 6-3-4-16, Marett 4-2-4-10, Drake 0-1-2-1, Naples 1-1-2-3, Hahn 1-0-2-2, Thompson 2-0-0-4, Romeo 0-0-0-0, Williams 0-0-0-0, Frederick 0-0-0-0, Brumbaugh 2-0-0-4. 3-pt. goal: Elliott 1. Totals: 22-10-18-55.
JV — Wilmington, 38-27. Dakota Naples 11 points for Wilmington.
BROOKFIELD 10 8 12 13 43
MATHEWS 15 7 7 17 46
BROOKFIELD — Hawley 0-4-6-4, Aut. Kirila 0-0-0-0, DiCristofaro 2-1-2-5, May 2-2-2-6, Saxton 5-2-4-12, Gauding 0-2-2-2, Hiner 5-2-3-14. 3-pt. goals: Hiner 2. Totals: 14-13-19-43.
MATHEWS — Wolford 0-0-0-0, Williams 3-0-0-6, Halavick 4-4-6-14, Sponsler 0-0-2-0, McClurg 0-1-2-1, Ellis 7-6-6-25. 3-pt. goals: Ellis 5, Halavick 2. Totals: 14-11-16-46.
JV — Brookfield, 48-36.
Friday night served as a microcosm of the 2013-14 season for the Farrell High and Sharon boys’ basketball teams. Sharon started strong, but ultimately faded as Farrell forged a 74-39 District 10 Region 5-AAA rout.
Lakeview's Breese to defend PIAA title
HERSHEY, Pa. — If you are Major League Baseball player, a .333 batting average is great. But in wrestling at the state tournament — not so much!
Out of the dozen wrestlers that Mercer County sent to Hershey for the PIAA State Class AA Wrestling Championships, only four (.333) will reach the medal stand today — led by Lakeview senior Sam Breese who shoots for a second straight gold medal.
Farrell edges Montour, 60-57, in PIAA opener
Montour High boys’ basketball coach Adam Kaufman lamented another season-ending setback. However there are several hundred coaches across the Commonwealth who envy his program’s recent success and would trade places with him in a heartbeat.
But during Friday night’s PIAA Class AAA playoff opener, Kaufman & Co. could not overcome those streaky Steelers ... those survivin’ Steelers.
“ ... Hey, survive and move on,” summarized Steelers’ skipper Roland Shannonhouse following Farrell’s 60-57 win at Sharon High.
GCC ousts Mercer in 1st round of PIAAs
The Mercer Lady Mustangs were outscored 16-4 in the final quarter of the first round of the state playoffs by the Greensburg Central Catholic Centurions, ending their season Friday night 56-31 at Sharon High School.
Senior Lexie Arkwright had a 20-point, 10-rebound double-double performance for the Lady M’s. She also snagged three steals. Adelyn Cook and Haylie Glass each added 4 points for Mercer.
5 area matmen to quarterfinals in Hershey
HERSHEY — Mercer County matmen had mixed results on the opening day of action in the PIAA State Class AA Wrestling Championships at the Giant Center.
Only 5 of the county’s dozen entries — led by defending state champ Sam Breese of Lakeview (285) — won their preliminary matches to move into the tournament quarterfinals which begin at 9 a.m. today. However the other 7 lost their first matches, although 3 are still alive in the consolations heading into this morning’s action.
Coach Chad Mild's Big Reds are road warriors
West Middlesex High boys basketball team did not play its first home game until after the first of the year, but competing at New Castle, Farrell and Youngstown’s Covelli Centre has served it well.
Witness West Middlesex’s 55-54 win over Fairview in last weekend’s District 10 Class AA championship game — at Edinboro University’s McComb Field House.
Boys PIAA basketball preview boxes
Who: Farrell (22-3) vs. Montour (16-8).
What: Opening round.
When: 7:30 p.m. today.
Where: Sharon High’s Tiger Gymnasium.
Hickory, Mercer, KC girls PIAA playoff boxes
Who: Hickory (25-0) vs. Greater Johnstown (11-14).
What: PIAA Playoffs, 1st round.
When: 5:30 p.m. Saturday.
Where: Slippery Rock University.
Shannonhouse's Steelers set for statewide stage
With the approaching spring, a young man’s fancy turns to ... what else? The PIAA playoffs. And when Shenango Valley scholastic basketball aficionados think of the postseason they think of Farrell.
Recently at E.J. McCluskey Gymnasium, the banners above were blowing in the breeze — ’52 ... ’54 ... ’56 ... ’59 ... ’60 ... ’69 ... ’72 — swaying as sprinting players created a vacuum of air rising from the floor. Melodramatic maybe, but there’s a feeling at Farrell that harkens back to the heyday when playoff success was a rite of passage.
Breese eyes repeat at state mat tourney
There is no doubt that winning a state championship in wrestling is a difficult thing to do. Winning two is even tougher.
“There’s a target on your chest,” pointed out Lakeview High coach Tom Tingley in preseason this year, referring to his star wrestler Sam Breese who won a state heavyweight crown as a junior last year.
Obviously that target hasn’t bothered the Sailors big man who is a perfect 32-0 this season as he attempts to become only the 12th Mercer County matman to win multiple titles.
WRESTLING NOTEBOOK: It's a young group of county matmen headed to state
THERE’S definitely a youth movement in Mercer County wrestling as demonstrated by the group of 11 matmen who are advancing to the PIAA State Class AA Championships on Thursday.
Eight of the locals are underclassmen. The only seniors are Lakeview’s Sam Breese (285), Reynolds’ Levi Stoyer (145) and Jamestown’s Mohamed Messai (182).
Breese and Stoyer are the only returning state place-winners. Breese, who has verbally committed to Kent State University to wrestle next season, won the heavyweight class and is seeking a second gold medal. Stoyer placed 7th at 145 and wants to climb much higher on the medals stand.
Kennedy boys forfeit win, are out of playoffs
The PIAA basketball playoffs do not begin until Friday, but Mercer County already lost a team.
Kennedy Catholic High disclosed Monday the discovery of an academically-ineligible player, who competed in last Friday’s District 10 Class A consolation contest.
Kennedy Catholic edged Eisenhower in double-OT, 66-62, earning a berth in the statewide tournament. The Golden Eagles were to meet District 9 champion Ridgway Friday at Clarion University’s Tippin Gymnasium in the opening round; instead, Eisenhower will represent D-10 as its 3rd-place team.
Raiders win 17th region title; 11 locals to Hershey
When Reynolds senior Levi Stoyer came off the mat after his 145-pound championship at the Northwest AA Regional Championships, he wasn’t celebrating his second straight crown. Instead, he turned to head coach Casey Taylor and said, “I did it for the team.”
And the team needed it!
Stoyer defeated Brookville’s Zach Vroman, 3-0, and sent Reynolds on its way to the school’s 17th region team title Saturday night at Sharon High School. Reynolds finished with 147 points, to Brookville’s 138.
Hickory girls capture 1st district title since 1983
MEADVILLE — Depending upon peoples’ perceptions, 31 years can seem like a lifetime ... but so can 16 minutes.
Hickory High girls’ basketball program’s District 10 drought ended Saturday afternoon as perennial power Villa Maria virtually vanished from the 2nd-half scoreboard.
The Lady Hornets erased a 7-point halftime deficit by yielding just 4 second-half points en route to a 39-24 victory over Villa Maria in the District 10 Class AAA championship game.
KC beats Cochranton for 4th straight D-10 crown
MEADVILLE — Everybody is on April Bocian’s bandwagon — and rightly so. But Tatum Kress helped keep Kennedy Catholic High girls’ basketball program atop District 10’s Class A competition.
Kress connected for all 14 of her points during the 2nd half Saturday afternoon, keying the Kennedy Catholic to a 49-38 conquest of Cochranton.
McLane rallies to beat Mercer in AA title tilt
In 1986, the Mercer Lady M’s won the school’s first and only girls basketball District 10 title at Edinboro University’s McComb Field House, but in the same gym on Saturday in 2014, the squad in blue wasn’t so lucky.
Mercer led the Gen. McLane Lady Lancers 27-19 entering the fourth quarter, but the Lancers outscored the Lady M’s 19-4 in the final frame to win the Class AA title tilt 38-31.
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- Lakeview's Breese to defend PIAA title