We will have a story at the beginning of next week about the Knights's outlook for the season from our friend Lisa Renwick. She will be keeping an eye on District 10 softball this season for us.
So far the returning District 10 champs are looking pretty solid with a decisive win over Corry Thursday at the sometimes sunny, sometimes cold, always soggy home field.
A monster blast by Rilee Hanna capped off a big second inning for the Franklin Knights Thursday against visiting Corry. In the one inning, they got half the points they needed to 10-run the Beavers in five innings.
Franklin's ace Trinity Edge struck out four innings worth of Corry batters (12) allowing only three hits. Franklin's bats were solid recording 12 hits.
Updated with final score and final total.
They managed to raise $1,200 and the organizers were very happy with the turnout. "The Franklin Community members really came through to support us," said Bridget Wood, a class of 25 adviser.
A slam dunk contest as well as a couple of raffles took place. No one managed to win the TV by hitting a layup, a free throw and three three pointers in 30 seconds.
Luke Guth, who is about to start lighting up batters on the baseball diamond acted as the faculty guest coach.
And it was a good chance to see some of the teachers in action and showing they still got game. And they do.... final score: Teachers 56, Students 55.
From a report from Rocky Grove mom Stephanie Anderson, the grove kid's battled back from the loser's bracket to take on Cranberry. She said "It was an exciting game," that went into overtime, but Cranberry prevailed in the ten team two-day double elimination tournament.
Congrats to Cranberry. To read a little story about the tournament please visit our story from yesterday.
"These coaches all played in this," Klinger said looking around the crowded St. Pat's gym. The tournament has grown to 10 teams coming from as far away as Grove City and Hermitage. A few grand is raised for the St. Patrick's parish through T-shirt sales, 50/50 raffle tickets, $1 bucket shoots, concessions and a small admission fee.
Below is a slideshow of photos from the Cranberry vs. Cochranton match-up Saturday afternoon. The tournament continues Sunday at the former St. Patrick's School in Franklin.
Screenshot of the FloWrestling coverage of the tournament.
Caldwell's teammate, 106 pound freshman Carter Beck finished in sixth place. Beck was 3-3 on the tournament and finished the season with a 37-8 record. Senior Hunter Robison won his high school final bout as a Saegertown Panther earning seventh place in the 113-weight bracket. He was 3-2 at the state championships and finished the year 36-5. Joshua Perrine, also a senior, finished off his season with a sixth-place finish at 285. He finished with a 37-10 record on the year.
Cranberry freshman Elijah Brosius was Venango County's only medal winner. He earned an eighth-place finish at 106-pounds. Brosius was 2-3 on the weekend and 34-8 for the year.
Hunter Gould, a sophomore from CASH, took sixth place in the 120-weight class. He was 3-3 on the weekend and 38-4 for the season.
Cochranton senior Jack Martinec went out with a win, defeating Kyle McCollum of Beth Center to take seventh place in the 132-weight bracket. Martinec was 3-2 in the tournament and 34-4 in his final season as a Cardinal.
In AAA action, Meadville's Griffin Buzzell had an almost carbon copy story to Caldwell above. He too won the wrestle=in round and then lost in the round of 16 to the same wrestler he would lose to four rounds later after wrestling his way back. He then won the fifth-place medal with an 11-1 win over Juliano Marion of Franklin Regional.
Quite the effort for our local wrestlers in The Sweetest Place on Earth.
State championships finish up today.
Editor's note: We learned of a wrestler we inadvertently left off this list. We updated below.
At 106 pounds Brosius, who won an 8-1 decision over Benton's Seth Kolb will face Park Sentipal of Burgettstown. Saegertown's Beck defeated CJ Carr of Wyalusing 10-4 to move on to face Aaron Seibel of Northern Lebanon. If Beck and Brosius win in the morning they will face off in the semis in a rematch of their regional bout where Beck won a decision. Defending champion Louie Gill of Hickory cruised to a pin.
At 113 Saegertown's Robison won a tech fall to advance to face Branden Wentzel. His teammate Joshua Perrine at 285 won a decision over Tyler Pfizenmayer of Saucon Valley. He'll move on to face Tussey Mountain's Matt Watkins.
Conneaut's Gould will move on to face Chris Vargo of Bentworth after defeating Chase Burke of Benton at 120 pounds.
Cochranton's Martinec will face Conner Heckman of Midd-West at 132 pounds. Martinec won a 2-1 decision over Kyle McCollum of Beth Center.
I'm not going to dwell on it... we had a team that rose to the occasion, a very good basketball team and an extraordinary basketball team enter round one of the playoffs. One team probably didn't have much of a chance, one team was a toss-up if they could advance and one team looked destined, but drew an unfortunate situation.
All three teams had a chance to move on if they could put together a game.
One team just couldn't get out of the gate, one team just didn't quite have what it took and one team walked off the court bloodied and stunned.
Oil City was eliminated by a pretty good margin on Tuesday night down in McKees Rocks. Rocky Grove ended up losing by 10 in what was a much closer game than the final score indicated. And Franklin just could not get their usual buckets to fall in the second half of a physical game against the very good third seed Ellwood City, who pulled out ahead at the end and held on despite Easton Fulmer draining a half-court three with one second left.
Final scores Carlynton over Rocky Grove 48-38 and Ellwood City over Franklin 65-63.
It was a sad end to an extraordinary season with three Venango teams all advancing to the state championship round. These teams were just fun to watch and photograph this season.
Below are some moments from Rocky Grove and Franklin games Wednesday night.
Final thoughts from Eight & 322.
It really was a treat watching these two teams this year. Both showed tenacity and drive to be better. We truly thought we'd be photographing Rocky Grove at least one more game and expected we were going to try to figure a way to afford a weekend in Hershey to document Franklin in Giant Center.
This night just wasn't their night.
We get it.
Sports are played and not determined on paper and certainly not in our dreams.
The other team has the same dream to win and on any given night can find a way to win.
That is life.
The final frame we're going to share from this season is coach Jason Fulmer getting a hug from his youngest son at the end of the game. That encapsulates what is truly the essence of high school sports. We might be in it to win, but we are family more than anything else. And there is so much to look forward to in the future.
Some photos from the Rocky Grove Friday night game thanks to Olivia Williams Photography
For Venango County boys basketball fans, Tuesday may require a bit of driving, but Wednesday's games are in our backyard.
The Oilers (19-6) travel to McKees Rocks to play the Montour Spartans (20-5) of Allegheny County at 7 p.m. Tuesday.
The Franklin Knights (23-5) will host the Ellwood City Wolverines (21-3) of Beaver County for a 7 p.m. game Wednesday at The Castle.
The Rocky Grove Orioles (19-6) will meet the Carlynton Cougars (20-3) of Carnegie, Allegheny County also for a 7 p.m. game Wednesday but at the Oil City High School House of Hustle.
Cranberry's Conner Reskowski defeated Titusville's Trenton Rodgers to take fifth place at 126 while teammate Brayden McFetridge placed sixth at 215.
There, of course, were many bouts of interest across the region. A strong Brookville squad was way out in from in points going into the finals with Saegertown, Reynolds and Brockway all jockeying for second place in the team standings. As with all tournaments, there were surprises and upsets, but there were also a lot of expected results. Below are the area wrestlers headed to Hershey this week including our two Venango County standouts at 106.
Several wrestlers in the Eight & 322 radar from Saegertown, Cochranton, Conneaut Area, Commodore Perry and Cambridge Springs (many of these wrestlers Eight & 322's Richard Sayer photographed when they wrestled JO's as little guys.)
Above is Joshua Perrine, he used to ride tiny motorcycles up behind the photographer's house when he visited his grandparents.
Below are more photos from Saturday. Visit https://sayerrich.zenfolio.com/p679514502 for even more.
Special thanks to Phennigwerth family for their support.
For a very comprehensive look ate Venango Sports visit our friend's website
yardsandpoints.com is a website dedicated the long history of the Oil City and Franklin football rivalry by former sports editor Penny Weichel. It is an amazing labor of love and valuable resource for history. It is our go-to here at 8and322.com.