REGION 2 PREVIEW

2014 CHAMPION: Cambridge Springs

OTHER PLAYOFF QUALIFIERS: Cochranton and Iroquois

 

PREVIOUS CHAMPIONS

2013: Eisenhower

2012: Eisenhower

2011: Youngsville

2010: ^Mercyhurst Prep

2009: ^Mercyhurst Prep

2008: Saegertown

2007: *^Mercyhurst Prep

2006: ^Mercyhurst Prep

2005: ^Fairview

2004: ^Fairview

*=also won district title, ^=no longer in region

 

1. CAMBRIDGE SPRING BLUE DEVILS

HEAD COACH: Clint Rauscher

2013 RECORD: 6-1 region, 8-3 overall (lost 14-35 to Mercer in district quarterfinals)

CUMULATIVE RECORD IN LAST 5 YEARS: 29-26

CUMULATIVE RECORD IN LAST 10 YEARS: 52-56

PLAYOFF APPEARANCES IN LAST 10 YEARS: 6 (2006, 2008-2011 and 2013)

DISTRICT TITLES IN LAST 10 YEARS: 0

PIAA FINALS APPEARANCES: 1

1988: lost 7-18 to Camp Hill

 

 

OFFENSE

Averaged 39.9 points per game last season (not including playoffs)

RANK

Amongst eight teams in region: 1

Amongst 14 Class A teams in district: 1

 

Cambridge Springs scored at least 35 points in each of its eight wins last year and, including the postseason, was held to fewer than 27 just two times. Three of the team's seven all-region selections from a season ago are back and included in that group are fellow first team offensive linemen Juston Tapper (senior, guard) and Blaine Wolfrom (junior, tackle). Senior Connor Melvin is a third year starter at the other tackle spot and sophomores Jordan Peterson (guard) and Brad Stoeger (center) complete the list of starters up front. Junior Kristofer Silbaugh is the other returning all-region member (second team, wide receiver) and caught 21 passes for 462 yards and eight touchdowns over the past two seasons. At running back the Spa must replace first team all-region choice and region co-player of the year Colton Noble, who rushed for 1599 yards and 23 touchdowns last season and, including the team's postseason setback to Mercer, rushed for at least 81 yards in every game and eclipsed the 100 yard mark nine times. Junior Zach Stafford figures to be feature back this season as he led all returning players in all rushing stats last year (91 carries, 675 yards, 11 touchdowns) after rushing for rushing for 332 yards and three touchdowns and also catching 23 passes for 312 yards and two scores as a freshman in 2012. Jason Foister and sophomore Cody Lanning are the other starting running backs and Foister's senior classmate Braden Baideme is the tight end. Junior Steve Reisenauer is the new starting quarterback and has big shoes to fill as his predecessor Devin Walker was a second team all-region choice last season and had a hand in 2558 yards of offense (1703 passing, 855 rushing) and 31 touchdowns (15-16) over the past two seasons.

 

 

DEFENSE

Allowed 16.0 points per game last season (not including playoffs)

RANK

Amongst eight teams in region: 1

Amongst 14 Class A teams in district: 3

 

The 2013 Cambridge Springs defense featured four all-region choices (all first team) and of that group only linebacker Noble (109 tackles) is no longer around. Like on offense, defensive tackle Tapper (43 tackles, four sacks) and defensive end Wolfrom (33 tackles, one sack) were first team all-region choices on defense last season and completing this year's line are Peterson (defensive tackle) and junior defensive end Josh Ebright (29 tackles). Strong safety Stafford was the fourth all-region member on last year's defense and has accumulated 136 tackles, five interceptions and three sacks in two seasons as a starter. Reisenauer led last year's team with two interceptions, adding 22 tackles and a sack, and is the weak safety and the starting cornerbacks are Silbaugh (13 tackles, one interception) and senior Jackson Miller (28 tackles). Baideme led last year's team with seven sacks and led all returning players with 80 tackles and is joined as a starting linebacker by senior Nicholas Pearson and junior Hunter Cox.        

 

 

SPECIAL TEAMS

Along with all of its all-region selections on defense, Cambridge Springs also had the first team all-region kicker (Gavin Hohn) and punter (Noble) last year and with both member of the Class of 2014 those two spots will be filled by three people with Cox the punter, freshman Brody Swab handling PATs and field goals and Pearson the new kickoff specialist. Stafford is the primary deep man on both kick and punt returns.

 

 

OUTLOOK

Despite the losses of Noble and Walker, this Cambridge Springs team certainly has the look of a postseason participant and more than likely a serious contender for the Region 2 crown.

 

 

 

 

2. EISENHOWER KNIGHTS

HEAD COACH: Jim Penley

2013 RECORD: 7-0 region (first), 7-4 overall (lost 7-31 to Sharpsville in district quarterfinals)

CUMULATIVE RECORD IN LAST 5 YEARS: 23-30

CUMULATIVE RECORD IN LAST 10 YEARS: 49-55

PLAYOFF APPEARANCES IN LAST 10 YEARS: 4 (2007, 2009 and 2012-2013)

DISTRICT TITLES IN LAST 10 YEARS: 0

PIAA FINALS APPEARANCES: 0

 

 

OFFENSE

Averaged 29.5 points per game last season (not including playoffs)

RANK

Amongst eight teams in region: 2

Amongst 16 Class A teams in region: 4

 

Eisenhower is the only District 10 Class A team that averaged more than 29 points per game both of the last two seasons, but to do so again the Knights must replace three first team all-region selections, including running back Alex Johnson, who rushed for 1160 yards and 13 touchdowns and added 18 receptions for 228 yards and three scores to share region player of the year honors with Colton Noble of Cambridge Springs.  Even with the departures, the team still brings back three more all-region members and headlining that list is senior Jarrett Johnson, who was a first team choice at wide receiver, catching 23 passes, 397 yards and seven touchdowns. Junior Grant Venman is in his first year as the other starting wide receiver as junior Louie Head (nine receptions, 121 yards, one touchdown) moves from there to replace first team all-region quarterback Rob Wilston (82-for-151, 1174 yards, 14 touchdowns, eight interceptions - 117 carries, 524 yards, six touchdowns). Logan Bellardo (14 carries, 61 yards, one touchdown - seven receptions, 81 yards) is the new tailback and his senior classmate Drew Myer is also a first year starter at fullback. Even with the loss of first team all-region tackle Jon Shelton, who is now playing for Division 3 power Mount Union, the line should again be strong with four starters back, including fellow first team all-region choices Chris Sanders (center) and Jake Spetz (guard). Junior guard Cory Schnarrs and sophomore tackle Hunter McNutt are the other returning starters on the line and junior tackle Seth Brendlinger completes the group.

 

 

DEFENSE

Allowed 21.9 points per game last season (not including playoffs)

RANK

Amongst eight teams in region: 2

Amongst 16 Class A teams in region: 6

 

The 2014 Knight defense included eight all-region members and half of them are back, including first team choices Sanders (82 tackles, two sacks) and Spetz (53 tackles). Linebacker Alex Johnson (130 tackles) and cornerback Carter Farrell (36 tackles, one interception) are two first team all-region choices who must replaced and Sanders is the only returning starter in the linebacker core with each of the other three starters sophomores in Byron Braswell, Spencer Gray and Adam Pascuzzi. On the line, Spetz is the nose tackle, McNutt is the defensive end and sophomore Mike Ott (15 tackles, one sack) is the defensive tackle and the secondary includes three returning starters in cornerback Jarett Johnson (13 tackles), strong safety Bellardo (56 tackles) and free safety Head (44 tackles) with Myer in his first year as the other corner.

 

 

SPECIAL TEAMS

With second team all-region kicker Venman and second team all-region punter Jarrett Johnson both back, special teams should be a strength for the Knights. Bellardo is deep on both punt and kick returns and joined deep on kicks by Braswell, Jarrett Johnson and Kyle Hunt.   

 

 

OUTLOOK

Since District 10 went to region play in 2004, no team has won Region 2 three straight years and while it won't be easy, Eisenhower certainly has a legitimate chance to battle Cambridge Springs for a potential "3peat".    

 

 

3. IROQUOIS BRAVES

HEAD COACH: Matt Morgan (first year)

2013 RECORD: 3-4 region (tied fourth), 3-7 overall

CUMULATIVE RECORD IN LAST 5 YEARS: 16-34

CUMULATIVE RECORD IN LAST 10 YEARS: 45-58

PLAYOFF APPEARANCES IN LAST 10 YEARS: 5 (2005-2008 and 2012)

DISTRICT TITLES IN LAST 10 YEARS: 0

PIAA FINALS APPEARANCES: 0

 

 

OFFENSE

Averaged 14.9 points per game last season (not including playoffs)

RANK

Amongst eight teams in region: 7

Amongst 14 Class A teams in district: 12

 

Under coach Morgan, Iroquois will run a Wing-T offense and with each of its top six rushers, who combined for each of its 18 rushing touchdowns, the system should be a good fit. Senior, second team all-region all purpose back, Brandon Roda led last year's team in all rushing stats (109 carries, 808 yards, 10 touchdowns) and is one of the starting halfbacks with sophomore Tyler Barone (62-501-3) the other and junior Nathaniel Kightlinger (57-230-2) the fullback. Kyle Lankiewicz caught 13 passes for 112 yards and two touchdowns last season and will see time at both running back and split end this season with his senior classmates Eric Adrover and Jacob Kruize others in the rotation at split end. Senior Dylan Carpin is back for a third season as the starting quarterback and the top tight ends are sophomore Logan State and junior Kyle Julius. Senior tackle Shamus Brady and junior center Riley Weismiller are returning starters on the line, while the other starting tackle spot is between juniors Seth Cowan and Austin Smith and the starting guards are senior Torin McLaurin and junior Tom Galvin.

 

 

DEFENSE

Allowed 30.3 points per game last season

RANK

Amongst eight teams in region: 5

Amongst 14 Class A teams in district: 10

 

Last year was the second straight season that Iroquois allowed opponents to average more than 30 points per game and the 2014 team will feature a 3-5 scheme. Kightlinger led all returning players with 71 tackles and two sacks a season ago and is joined as starting inside linebacker by Adrover and junior Seth Cowan with Roda (54 tackles) and Barone (49 tackles) the outside backers. Brady and senior Nick Gibbons (40 tackles, one sack) are the defensive tackles and McLaurin is the nose tackle with the secondary made up of safety Carpin and cornerbacks Laniewicz (40 tackles) and sophomore Austin Graves with freshman Tarrell Clark spelling Carpin at times.

 

 

SPECIAL TEAMS

Laniewicz is the kicker and Roda is the punter and both of that duo also handle kick and punt returns along with Barone.

 

 

OUTLOOK

The ultimate goal for Iroquois is to reach the playoffs and compete for the region, but more than that this season is about improving every day, being able to install the new offense and new defense and changing the mindset.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

4. MAPLEWOOD TIGERS

HEAD COACH: Brian Borkovich

2012 RECORD: 3-4 region (tied fourth), 5-6 overall (lost 6-61 to Lakeview in district quarterfinals)

CUMULATIVE RECORD IN LAST 5 YEARS: 16-35

CUMULATIVE RECORD IN LAST 10 YEARS: 24-75

PLAYOFF APPEARANCES IN LAST 10 YEARS: 1 (2013)

DISTRICT TITLES IN LAST 10 YEARS: 0

PIAA FINALS APPEARANCES: 0

 

 

OFFENSE

Averaged 23.2 points per game last season (not including playoffs)

RANK

Amongst eight teams in region: 4

Amongst 14 Class A teams in district: 6

 

Last year was the first time since 2002 that Maplewood averaged at least 20 points per game and the strength of this year's offense seems to be at the "skill" positions with the line a work in progress. All three of last year's all region selections are back for their respective senior seasons and that group is led by first team tight end Noah Marvin (16 receptions, 174 yards, two touchdowns). Running back Miller Peters (94 carries, 648 yards, five touchdowns) and wide Jeremy Dahl (10 receptions, 100 yards, one touchdown) were both second team all-region selections is 2013 and junior Derrick Lindsay is the other starting running back this season,  while Wyatt Wright, who is also a junior is the other receiver. Senior Dane Barker enters his second season as the starting quarterback and had a hand in 1387 yards of offense (784 passing, 603 rushing) and 16 touchdowns (6-10) last year. The line is made up of all new starters with senior Cody Bryan and sophomore Luke McPherson the tackles, senior Shawn Baldwin and junior Ryan Leech the guards and freshman Jeb Parker the center.

 

 

DEFENSE

Allowed 25.9 points per game last season (not including playoffs)

RANK

Amongst eight teams in region: 4

Amongst 14 Class A teams in district: 9

 

As good as Maplewood's offense was last year, the defense really told the story of the team's success as it allowed 35 points or more in five of its six losses and no more than 19 in four of its five wins. Tyshaun Johnson (first team) and Peters (second team) were both all-reigion choices last season, but Johnson (77 tackles, four interceptions, one sack) is no longer around and Peters (72 tackles, two sacks) has been moved to linebacker where he'll be joined as a starter by juniors Chris Tatters (21 tackles) and Kyle Nuhfer. Even without Johnson and Peters, the secondary still has some experience with sophomore strong safety Zack Wellman (44 tackles) and cornerback Dahl (29 tackles, two interceptions) both returning starters. Senior Austin Smith is the other corner and the free safety is freshman Jacob Roser.  The most experienced unit on defense is the line as defensive ends Delo (42 tackles, four sacks) and Marvin (59 tackles) and defensive tackle McPherson (36 tackles) are all back and sophomore Taylor Donovan is the only new starter.

 

 

SPECIAL TEAMS

Junior Caden Parulski enters his second season as the kicker, freshman Aaron Motter is the punter and the return guys are Peters and Newpher.

 

 

OUTLOOK

Coming off a season that ended with a postseason appearance and considering what it has back, coach Borkovich hopes that his team can not only match last season's success but, with a fast start, possibly battle for a region crown.

 

   

5. SAEGERTOWN PANTHERS

HEAD COACH: Mike Rhoades

2013 RECORD: 0-7 Region 3 (eighth), 0-10 overall

CUMULATIVE RECORD IN LAST 5 YEARS: 18-34

CUMULATIVE RECORD IN LAST 10 YEARS: 58-49

PLAYOFF APPEARANCES IN LAST 10 YEARS: 6 (2004, 2006-2008 and 2010-2011

DISTRICT TITLES IN LAST 10 YEARS: 0

PIAA FINALS APPEARANCES: 0

 

 

OFFENSE

Averaged 8.8 points per game last season

RANK

Amongst eight teams in Region 3: 8

Amongst 16 Class AA teams in district: 16

 

In two seasons in Class AA and Region 3, Saegertown averaged just 12.65 points per game, but the team averaged more than 30 per contest in four of the previous five seasons when it was a Class A squad competing in Region 2. If nothing else, the Panthers definitely have one of the most experienced offenses in this region as senior quarterback Ryan Kirdahy enters his third season as a starter and senior running backs Casey Fetzner, Trey Reagle, Lance Neuscheler and Mitchell Schultz are also veterans at the varsity level. Split end Briceson Darling is another senior that will see start or see significant time at a "skill" position and the tight end is sophomore Luke Triola. Center Spence Price and guard Nick Rumzie complete the list of senior starters on offense and both of the duo as well as junior guard Chris Mattern-Gilchrist have at least some starting experience, while fellow sophomore tackles Tyler Brooks and Dalton Gaerttner are both first year starters.

 

 

DEFENSE

Allowed 58.9 points per game last season

RANK

Amongst eight teams in Region 3: 8

Amongst 16 Class AA teams in district: 16

 

The Panthers allowed at least 35 points in every one of their games last season, while giving up 50 or nine times. Eight different players who start or see significant time on offense will do the same on defense, including all four members of the line with Sowers and Schultz the defensive ends and Gaerttner and Gilchrist the defensive tackles. In the team's 4-2-5 defense the linebackers are Reagle and sophomore Ben Berger and the secondary is made up of cornerbacks Kirdahy and sophomore Zack Posego and safeties Neuscheler, Rumzie and senior Garrett Zuver.

 

 

SPECIAL TEAMS

Triola is the kicker, Sowers is the punter and the kick/punt returners are Neuscheler and junior Tyler Henry.

 

 

OUTLOOK

Coach Rhoades hopes that competing against Class AA competition the past two seasons will turn into a positive for his team as it drops back to Class A and that with a senior heavy lineup the Panthers can compete for a postseason berth this year.

 

 

 

 

6. COCHRANTON CARDINALS

HEAD COACH: Nathan Liberty

2013 RECORD: 5-2 region (third), 6-4 overall (lost 32-46 to West Middlesex in district quarterfinals)

CUMULATIVE RECORD IN LAST 5 YEARS: 19-30

CUMULATIVE RECORD IN LAST 10 YEARS: 27-68

PLAYOFF APPEARANCES IN LAST 10 YEARS: 2 (2012-2013)

DISTRICT TITLES IN LAST 10 YEARS: 0

PIAA FINALS APPEARANCES: 0

 

 

OFFENSE

Averaged 28.4 points per game last season (not including playoffs)

RANK

Amongst eight teams in region: 3

Amongst 14 Class A teams in district: 5

 

The Cardinal offense featured four all-region choices last year, but of that quartet only senior first team guard Cody Nageotte returns. Nageotte's senior classmate Evan Miller (tackle) gives the line a second returning starter with juniors Jacob Bean (center) and Cordell Hostetler (tackle) and sophomore guard Tyler Freyermuth completing the unit. Chad Eisenhooth was the team's starting quarterback each of the last four seasons - passing for 2481 yards, 30 touchdowns and only four interceptions, while rushing for 1026 yards and 15 touchdowns over the past two seasons alone - and on the eve its second scrimmage, who would fill his spot was unknown with as many as five different players having an opportunity. Running back Garrett Adams (92 carries, 579 yards, six touchdowns - 21 receptions, 411 yards, five touchdowns) and wide receiver Jesse Stoudt (18 receptions, 402 yards, six touchdowns - 42 carries, 321 yards, one touchdown) joined Nageotte as first team all-region honorees on last year's offense and the top three backs this season are seniors James Groover (16 carries, 119 yards, two touchdowns), Jacob Yarnell (17-77-1) and sophomore Logan Shreve with seniors Cameron Woods and Conner Stoudt, who is Jesse Stoudt's cousin, and junior Tristan Mattern the top three wide outs. Conner Stoudt also sees time at tight end along with junior Arnold Johnson.

 

 

DEFENSE

Allowed 22.4 points per game last season (not including playoffs)

RANK

Amongst eight teams in region: 3

Amongst 14 Class A teams in district: 7

 

Defensively Cochranton must replace four all-region picks, including first team defensive end Alex Custead (49 tackles, three sacks) and cornerback Jesse Stoudt (21 tackles, one interception) and like on offense, Nageotte is the only returning all-region choice as he finished 2013 with 47 tackles to earn second team honors at defensive tackle. On this year's line, Miller (29 tackles) is the other tackle and the defensive ends are Bean and Fryerman. Yarnell (38 tackles) and Groover (17 tackles, one sack) are the outside linebackers and the inside linebackers are Johnson and sophomore Blake Miller. Free safety Shreve led all returning players with 58 tackles a season ago and he's joined in this year's starting secondary by cornerbacks Mattern and Woods.

 

 

SPECIAL TEAMS

Senior Matt Silloway is the kicker, Groover is the punter and the return guys are Shreve and sophomore Pete Jamieson.

 

 

OUTLOOK

Cochranton is 2-for-2 in playoff appearances under coach Liberty and while this is the most inexperienced group he's had, there is still a lot of young talent and the expectation is still "to win".

 

 

 

7. UNION CITY BEARS

HEAD COACH: Randy Gunther

2013 RECORD: 1-6 region (seventh), 1-9 overall

CUMULATIVE RECORD IN LAST 5 YEARS: 18-32

CUMULATIVE RECORD IN LAST 10 YEARS: 35-65

PLAYOFF APPEARANCES IN LAST 10 YEARS: 3 (2008-2010)

DISTRICT TITLES IN LAST 10 YEARS: 0

PIAA FINALS APPEARANCES: 0

 

 

OFFENSE

Averaged 19.6 points per game last season

RANK

Amongst eight teams in region: 6

Amongst 14 Class A teams in district: 10

 

The biggest question facing the Union City offense this season is who will replace multi-year starting quarterback Brody Mangol, who rushed for 1079 yards and 12 touchdowns, while adding three more touchdown passes a season ago. Less than a week into camp the position was still unfilled and of the candidates only junior Josh Still attempted a pass at the varsity level (2-for-2, 60 yards, two touchdowns) in 2013. If Still isn't the quarterback then he'll see time at running back along with senior Tanner Hancock (60 carries, 260 yards, four touchdowns) and sophomore Riley Cross, who scored two touchdowns (one rush, one catch) last season. Seniors Kyle Baxter and Brian Waldinger are the top two wide receivers and the line includes three returning starters in senior center Tyler Johnson and junior guards Austin Kesserling and Justin Douglas. Junior Brandon Kent holds one the tackle positions and the other was unfilled at the time of this interview.

 

 

DEFENSE

Allowed 40.6 points per game last season

RANK

Amongst eight teams in region: 7

Amongst 14 Class A teams in district: T-12

 

Last year was the third straight season that Union City's defense regressed as far as points per game allowed goes and it gave up 30 or more eight times, while holding only one foe to fewer than 28. Like on offense, Johnson, Kesserling, Douglas, Hancock, Still and Cross are all returning starters on defense and sophomore defensive back Emmett Murphy gives the unit a seventh returning starter. Joining Murphy in this year's secondary are Baxter and freshman Daulton Kerns, with Hancock, Still and Cross joined as starting linebackers by Kent. Johnson and Kesserling are the defensive ends, Douglas is the defensive tackle at the time of this interview the nose guard position was open.

 

 

SPECIAL TEAMS

Douglas is the punter, while Cross is the kicker and also back on kick and punt returns along with Hancock.

 

 

OUTLOOK 

Union City hasn't won more than three games since 2010 and the Bears could have a tough time surpassing that number again this season.

8. YOUNGSVILLE EAGLES

HEAD COACH: John Victor

2013 RECORD: 0-7 region (eighth), 0-9 overall

CUMULATIVE RECORD IN LAST 5 YEARS: 18-32

CUMULATIVE RECORD IN LAST 10 YEARS: 28-71

PLAYOFF APPEARANCES IN LAST 10 YEARS: 1 (2011)

DISTRICT TITLES IN LAST 10 YEARS: 0

PIAA FINALS APPEARANCES: 0

 

 

OFFENSE

Averaged 6.8 points per game last season

RANK

Amongst eight teams in region: 8

Amongst 14 Class A teams in district: 13

 

To say last season was a struggle for the Youngsville offense would be putting it mildly as the team scored no more than one touchdown in eight of its nine games and was shutout twice. The good news is that many of last year's key contributors are back and headlining the group of returnees is senior quarterback Jacob Lauffenburger, who enters his third season as the team's signal caller and has passed for 1165 yards, eight touchdowns and 18 interceptions in that time. Lauffenburger also led last year's team with 125 carries for 306 yards and this year's stable of running back includes senior Cody Cox, juniors Hayden Victor and Christian Blick, sophomore Owen Engstrom and freshman Mason Benjamin. Senior Sam Bubbenmoyer (five receptions, 73 yards, one touchdown), junior Solomon Clark (six receptions, 116 yards, one touchdown) and freshman Jordan Keyes are the top three split ends, while senior John Uplinger is back as the starting tight end. Senior guards Noah Carlson and Jeff Pfoutz and junior Jacob Sperry (center) and William Dudenhoeffer (tackle) all have experience starting on the line, although either Carlson or Pfoutz will be a backup this season with sophomore Joe Frazier filling one of the guard spots, while his classmate Austin Spear takes over the open tackle spot.

 

 

DEFENSE

Allowed 46.9 points per game last season

RANK

Amongst eight teams in region: 8

Amongst 14 Class A teams in district: 14

 

Youngsville was one of only two District 10 teams, regardless of classification, that allowed opponents to average more than 45 points per game last season and with a roster that includes only 29 players, many of the Eagles will go both ways. On the line Benjamin, Dudenhoeffer and sophomore Ryan Bush are the tackles with Pfoutz, Spear, Carlson and Sperry all seeing time at the two end spots. Lauffenburger moves from the secondary to join Clark and Frazier as linebackers and Bubbenmoyer is the new safety with cornerbacks Hoffner and freshman Aaron Morris the other starters in this year's defensive backfield.

 

 

SPECIAL TEAMS

Bubbenmoyer handles all kicking and punting responsibilities and the kick/punt return guys are Engstrom and Hoffner.

 

 

OUTLOOK

Youngsville has won no more than two games in nine of the last 12 seasons and the victories could be hard to come by again this year.