The Herald, Sharon, Pa.

Sports

November 10, 2013

SPORTVIEW: Tragic deaths of Sharon players puts perspective on sports, life

OPINION — THE PITTSBURGH Steelers are struggling. Who cares! The Cleveland Browns have battled tough injuries. Who cares!

The Shenango Valley community is in mourning. The glory of four victories by Mercer County Class A football teams was forgotten quickly Friday night because of the deaths of two Sharon High football players.

A tragic accident on Connelly Boulevard (the Shenanago Valley Freeway) just west of the Oakland Avenue Viaduct put into perspective the difference between sports and real life. More specifically, the end of life.

Two Sharon football players — Corey Swartz and Evan Gill — were killed and the Osmon twins, Greg and Craig, left in critical condition at St. Elizabeth’s Hospital in Youngstown.

The driver of a pick-up that collided head-on with the SUV that reportedly crossed the center line while carrying the players was also killed while two youngsters in the back of the pick-up were slightly injured and taken to hospitals.

The four players were coming back from Hickory High stadium where they had watched West Middlesex defeat Cochranton. I’m sure they were discussing their scheduled game this afternoon against Girard — a game that was canceled in light of the tragedy Saturday.

The team pulled together and decided to play the game Monday for those who couldn’t be there. And I’m sure that’s what Evan and Corey would have wanted.

It was a bad, bad accident. I was one of the first people at the scene, also coming back from the game, and did what I could to help until emergency units arrived.

Why did it happen? Details are still being pieced together. But one thing for sure, there needs to be lessons learned from this tragedy. Speed obviously played a role from the damage to the vehicles.

And a key lesson for every young person who climbs into a car is to strap on a seat belt, which was obviously not done here. I realize that every youngster thinks he or she is invincible. But this accident should drive home the fact that you aren’t. And while wearing a seat belt doesn’t guarantee you won’t be killed, it increases the chance of living 10-fold.

And there is also a lesson for Sharon City Council and PennDOT. Get a barrier set up in that part of the freeway, just as you have through most of the rest of the freeway in Sharon and Hermitage. Even though the speed limit is 40 mph, people fly up and down that piece of road.

I ran into former Sharon Police Chief/Mayor Dave Ryan Saturday morning and he said, “I fought for years to get barriers there, but the businesses complained. Hey, it only takes a minute more to go around.”

There are many businesses in Hermitage shut off to one way traffic and they have no trouble surviving. With “surviving” being the key word here, not only for the businesses but for people who avoided possible fatal accidents. Ryan said these are not the first deaths on that stretch of the freeway.

I have actually seen cars and trucks bounce off the barriers in Hermitage, but there’s a big difference between a few scrapes on a vehicle and a head-on collision.

Several people helped at the scene until emergency crews arrived and should be commended for their strength in the face of great adversity. The firefighters, police and ambulance personnel did a tremendous, well-coordinated job although the strain of such a scene shown on just about every face. How could it not?

All of us who have children or grandchildren can’t help but think how it would feel for our families to suffer the loss of our young people.

In football, you stick together as a team. As a community you do the same thing when people are in need or in pain.  If you’re religious, say a prayer for those families of everyone involved in that crash. If you aren’t, send positive thoughts of hope to them as best you can.

I usually make my weekly NFL predictions at the end of this column. Not today.

Who cares!

And on Monday: GO TIGERS!

Lynn Saternow is sports editor of The Herald. He can be reached at lsaternow@sharonherald.com.

1
Text Only
Sports
  • Roundup: Trojans, Hounds win team titles at WM Invitational

    Wilmington High girls and Greenville boys dominated the annual Big Red Track & Field Invitational Thursday afternoon in West Middlesex.
    A half-dozen girls’ and 7 boys’ teams competed.
    Wilmington overwhelmed the female field, as the Lady Greyhounds garnered almost twice as many points as runner-up Lakeview (236-5 to 133.5).

    April 18, 2014

  • Aaron Webb Roundup: WM diamondmen edge Reynolds, 6-4

    ä West Middlesex 6, Reynolds 4 — At Transfer, the Big Reds snapped a 4-all tie by plating a run in the 4th inning and another in the 7th in a 2-run win over the Raiders.
    Mark Colella earned the mound win in a relief appearance for WM. No pitching stats were submitted.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Roundup: Hickory, Wilmington softball teams win

    Paced by Chelsea Marriott’s muscle, Hickory High hammered 4 home runs Saturday afternoon en route to a 19-1 rout of Sharon.
    At Wengler, Marriott mauled 2- and 3-run round-trippers to right-center and straightaway center field, respectively. Her Lady Hornets’ teammates Hannah Gallagher and Morgan McBride mustered 3-run bombs, also.

    April 13, 2014

  • Fired coach in Mankato unjustly accused of visiting porn sites

    Minnesota State University-Mankato officials wrongly accused former football coach Todd Hoffner of viewing pornography sites on his work  computer  before firing him last May, a state arbitrator has disclosed.

    April 11, 2014

  • Roundup: Hickory track coaches to step down following season

    Hickory High track & field co-head coaches Barb Dzuricsko and Mark Slezak announced they will step down at the season’s conclusion.
    Dzuricsko and Slezak, who led the Lady Hornets to the 2012 PIAA Class AA crown, jointly made the announcement via e-mail late Wednesday.

    April 11, 2014

  • Nikolo Lima Roundup: Devil diamondmen roll past Sharon

    An old-school baseball bromide states that, early in any season, pitching is always ahead of hitting. However Sharpsville shunned that axiom Wednesday afternoon.
    The Blue Devils banged 15 hits, and Sharpsville short-circuited Sharon, 16-4, in 5 innings.

    April 10, 2014 1 Photo

  • Haley Boyd Roundup: Hounds, Hornets notch track sweeps

    ä Wilmington 116, Reynolds 44 — At New Wilmington, the host Lady Hounds were led by Rikki Brumbaugh (4x8, 4x4 relay legs, 400- and 800-meter runs); Hannah Drake (long, triple jumps, 4x4 relay); Allison Baldwin (4x8 and 4x4 relay legs); Lexi Brumbaugh (1600-, 3200-meter runs, distance-relay leg), and Tessa Sikora (high jump, 200-meter dash, sprint-relay anchor).

    April 9, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPORTVIEW: Pirates, Indians fans looking for big things this year

    LIFE IS GOOD if you are a fan of the Pittsburgh Pirates or Cleveland Indians. At least for now!
    Heading into Saturday, both teams were 3-1 and looking pretty sharp. Since both made the playoffs last year, there are high expectations for both clubs. But in baseball, every year is a new season and there are no guarantees.
    Still, it’s always nice when your favorite teams get off to a good start. In too many seasons, Pittsburgh and Cleveland fans were only talking about the NFL draft because hopes were bleak for their baseball teams.

    April 6, 2014

  • Nikki Arbanas Hickory's Arbanas 1st team All-State; KC's Hood 3rd team

    ALTOONA, Pa. (AP) — Teams from the WPIAL won three of the four PIAA girls basketball championships this year, and southwestern Pennsylvania is turning out to be just as dominant when it comes to postseason honors.
    Pittsburgh-area programs produced seven of the eight major award winners on this season’s Sports Writers Pennsylvania High School Girls Basketball All-State Team, including all four players of the year.

    April 5, 2014 1 Photo

  • Trey Staunch WM's Staunch named 2nd team All-State

    HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Finishing on the winning side in a championship game — or coming mighty, mighty close — scored plenty of points with the panel that selected Pennsylvania’s all-state boys’ basketball team.
    Especially when it came time to choose those — whether players or coaches — who claimed the top individual awards.

    April 5, 2014 1 Photo

  • Brady Leunis Roundup: Hickory, Mercer, Reynolds, WM baseball teams earn wins

    ä Hickory 12, Sharpsville 10 — At the McCullough Run Complex in South Pymatuning Twp., the visiting Hornets improved to 4-0 with the win.
    Brady Leunis went 2-for-3 for Hickory with a double and 3 RBI, Tommy Cannon belted a 2-run homer, Noah Orndorff was 2-for-4, Nate Mastrian ripped an RBI-double, Ethan Davis was 2-for-4 with a double and a run driven in and Jake Andrzjewski doubled.

    April 3, 2014 1 Photo

  • Jordyn Allen Roundup: WM, Wilmington, Mercer softball teams win

    ä West Middlesex 11, Grove City 1 (5 inn.) — At the Richard J. Kritz Softball Complex in West Middlesex, Jordyn Allen fired a complete-game 2-hitter with 8 strikeouts and no walks as the Ms. Reds (1-1) rebounded from a tough loss to Lakeview on Monday.
    Offensively, Allen doubled and ripped 2 singles for WM, Abby McAdams and Aly Andrusky doubled and singled, Macy Siefert collected 4 singles and Hannah Havens, Megan Hazlett and Oivia Slater added 2 singles each.

    April 2, 2014 1 Photo

  • In control Hickory girls, Farrell boys win Guerino titles

    The Hickory girls and Farrell boys captured championships on Saturday night at the 17th annual Buddy Guerino Underclassmen Basketball Tournament at Sharpsville High School.
    The Hickory girls beat Kennedy Catholic, 41-29, for the crown while the Farrell boys topped Mercer, 76-35, for the title.
    In the consolation games, Sharpsville defeated Sharon, 35-15, in girls hoops while the Sharon boys beat Hickory, 57-33.

    March 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPORTVIEW: Eagles' release of Jackson was a strange move

    ONE OF THE strangest NFL moves I’ve seen in a long time involved the Philadelphia Eagles releasing DeSean Jackson.
    Jackson is one of the top wide receivers in the league and a danger to score every time he touches the ball, including punt returns. But the big question is: Why was he just released? Couldn’t they find a trade at least to get some value back?

    March 30, 2014

  • Tanner Powell WM track teams go 6-1 at Big Red Duals

    The West Middlesex girls and track teams both went 6-1 on Friday at the annual Big Red Relays. Both teams lost to Mohawk.
    The WM boys beat A.C. Valley (129-17), Commodore Perry (120-26), Kennedy Catholic (128-18), Laurel (89-61), Sharon (108-38), Union (127-19) and lost to Mohawk (96-53).
    The Ms. Reds topped A.C. Valley (128-18), Commodore Perry (120-22), Kennedy Catholic (123-14), Laurel (123-14), Laurel (89-56), Sharon 114-26, Union (107-33) and lost to Mohawk (96 1/2-48 1/2).

    March 29, 2014 1 Photo

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