Category Archives: Local Sports

RHS middle school football aims for 3-peat

Riverside Middle School Football team in last year's Tri-County Championship game

Riverside Middle School Football team in last year’s Tri-County Championship game

Tonight, the Riverside Middle School Panthers (5-0-2) will host the Mohawk Warriors (5-1-1) at Riverside Memorial Stadium in the Tri-County Championship game.  A win for the Panthers will mark a third consecutive title.

For a second straight year, Riverside will play a team that they failed to defeat in the regular season.  The Panthers avenged their only loss by defeating the Laurel Spartans in the 2013 title game.  Earlier this season, Mohawk and Riverside played to a 6-6 tie, which left both teams with unfinished business.  The difference between that game and tonight’s is that one team will obtain resolve.

Proceeds from the game will be put towards college scholarships in the tri-county area.  Tickets are $4 for adults and $2 for students.  Kick-off is at 7 p.m.

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PHOTOS: Sophomores, juniors win on EC Powderpuff weekend

Last Saturday, Lincoln High School hosted a set of football games at Helling Stadium that had no playoff implications.  However, pride and charity were on the line.

In the 4 p.m. game, the Sophomore powderpuff team offered the Freshman squad a similar welcome to powderpuff football that it was given a year ago in a 50-8 loss to the current Junior team.  Maddie Morella and Taylor Petrak both found the end zone, while Erika Wally added a field goal to boost the Sophomores to victory over the Freshman girls, 25-16.  Alexis Casuccio and Danica Teodoro scored for the Freshman in the loss.

At 6 p.m., the Juniors sent the Seniors off with a not-so-pleasant farewell.  Allie McKelvey, Karrington Ketterer, Cortni Prine and Mallory Swogger all broke the plane in a 30-14 trouncing of the Senior team.  Maddie DeLisio and Amber Leech each added a touchdown for the Seniors.

Though two teams lost, everyone achieved a greater goal as a portion of the proceeds from the powderpuff football games went to the Susan G. Komen For the Cure Foundation and the Lincoln High School Club Hope to assist with a local family with cancer treatment.  The girls all wore pink on their uniforms in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.


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Free wrestling clinic for EC students

Coach Craig Alberts instructing young wrestlers at the 2013 wrestling clinic.

Coach Craig Alberts instructing young wrestlers at the 2013 wrestling clinic.

Coach Craig Alberts and the Ellwood City Wolverines wrestling team will host a free two-day wrestling clinic for students on Tuesday, Oct. 28 and Wednesday, Oct. 29  in the Lincoln High School small gym.  The events will run from 5:30 p.m. until 7 p.m. on both evenings.

The clinic is open to all students K-6 interested in learning the basic rules and techniques of wrestling.  Participants should wear t-shirts with gym shorts or sweatpants.  Wrestling shoes are NOT required for this clinic.

For any further questions regarding the wrestling clinic, please contact Alberts at

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Riverside still controls own destiny after loss

2014GridIron-AD-RHSOne win.

That’s all that Tom Liberty’s team needs to qualify for the WPIAL playoffs this year after a miserable 2013 campaign that yielded just that…one win.  Last Friday night, Riverside (3-3 Big Seven, 4-4 overall) ran into a team that gave them flashbacks of last season in Shenango.  The Wildcats torched the Panthers for 517 rushing yards, including 282 by junior running back Tyler Root, in Shenango’s 45-21 victory at Riverside Memorial Stadium.

Explosive plays set the tone in the conference match-up.  Quarterback Jason Dambach connected with Logan Sheridan for a 69-yard touchdown pass in the first quarter for the Panthers after Root stormed to the end zone twice on runs of 61 and 74 yards.  In the third quarter, Sheridan blew past the Wildcats’ defense for a 70-yard touchdown run that pulled the Panthers within ten, but Root responded with an 80-yard burst of his own that put the game out of reach.  In all, five plays went for 61-plus yards between the teams.

The loss puts Riverside in a must-win situation this Friday when the team hosts another Big Seven foe, Vincentian Academy (2-5 Big Seven, 2-6 overall).  The Royals defeated Rochester last Friday, 31-22 after dropping five consecutive contests.  A win puts Riverside in the playoffs for the first time since 2007.

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Down and Out: Loss drops EC from playoff contention

The Wolverines took an early third quarter lead against Laurel on Friday night, then watched the Spartans counter with 17 unanswered points to eliminate Ellwood City from playoff contention, 27-14.

After a touchdown drive to start the second half, Ellwood City (3-4 MAC, 4-4 overall) seemingly seized momentum with a huge red zone stop at the 2-yard-line on fourth down.  After taking over on downs, the Wolverines coughed up the football inside their own 10-yard-line, and a Laurel defender took the loose ball to the end zone.  The score solidified the win for the Spartans (3-4 MAC, 3-5), who also watched their playoffs chances slip away as Beaver defeated Freedom, 51-19.

It was a bittersweet night for junior running back Nick Ioanilli, who surpassed the 1,000-yard rushing plateau for the season with an 86-yard performance, but threw a costly fourth quarter interception with the Wolverines already down 24-14.

The Wolverines hope to play spoiler this Friday against the Beaver Bobcats, who can clinch a second-place finish in the Midwestern American Conference with a win and a Beaver Falls loss.  With a win, the Wolverines can also finish the season above .500 for the first time since 2011.  Kick-off is at 7:00 p.m. at Helling Stadium.

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Playoff updates: Ellwood City and Riverside

Last Friday, the Ellwood City Wolverines (3-3, 4-3) survived a scare by holding off a feisty Mohawk team.  The Warriors climbed within two points of the Wolverines in the fourth quarter, but a later touchdown solidified the victory for Ellwood City who remains in playoff contention.

2014GridIron-AD-LHSWhile the win kept the Wolverines alive in the playoff hunt, the team does not control its own destiny and will have a tough road ahead.

Ellwood City gets in if:

The Wolverines defeat Laurel and Beaver, and Beaver Falls loses at least one of its last two games (Aliquippa, New Brighton).

@ Laurel (2-4, 2-5) on 10/17

  • Ellwood City is 3-0 on the road; Laurel is 2-1 at home
  • Both teams defeated Mohawk and Freedom
  • Ellwood City defeated Summit Academy (0-7); Laurel plays Summit Academy on 10/24

vs. Beaver (4-2, 5-2 overall) on 10/24

  • Beaver defeated Laurel 40-7 last week


The Riverside football squad holds its playoff destiny in its own hands as a single victory over the remaining two weeks secures a playoff birth for the Panthers.

The Panthers first test will be a tough one beginning tonight as they host Shenango (5-2 overall) in a Big Seven showdown.

2014GridIron-AD-RHSRiverside will look to the air attack again this week and ride the strong arm of junior quarterback Jason Dambach who is coming off an impressive aerial performance last week.  For the season, Dambach is averaging just over 200 yards passing per game and has 10 touchdown passes.

Riverside gets in if:

The Panthers win one of its remaining two games.  Panthers host Shenango 10/17 and a 1-win Vincentian Academy 10/24


Union, Vincentian Academy, and Western Beaver each lose at least one of their two remaining games.  All three teams have four section losses.


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Riverside’s defense has trouble stopping the run in loss

Front Row: Dalton Hewitt, Ray Miller, Austin Suders, Marcel Cleckley, Cortney Harden  Back Row: Shane Reich, Glenn Brosenitsch, Jake Alters, Logan Sheridan, Dustin Bricker

Front Row: Dalton Hewitt, Ray Miller, Austin Suders, Marcel Cleckley, Cortney Harden Back Row: Shane Reich, Glenn Brosenitsch, Jake Alters, Logan Sheridan, Dustin Bricker

Quarterback Jason Dambach drove his Riverside Panthers up and down the field Friday night for the majority of the game, but it was South Side’s rushing game that dictated the pace in their 24-14 victory.

Riverside’s defense had no answer for Nathan Block, Cody Campbell, and Quae’Shawn Thompson.  The three combined for 316 yards and three touchdowns on the ground, including an 80-yard burst by Block to open scoring the second quarter.  Campbell added two more touchdowns, including a 4-yard score that sealed the game in the fourth quarter.

Dambach erupted for 377 yards and two touchdowns, both to Logan Sheridan in the second quarter, but could drive his team to the end zone in the second half.  Sheridan and Ricky Wass both surpassed the 100-yard receiving plateau in the game.  Riverside drove the ball to the 24-yardline late in the fourth quarter, but the drive fizzled out.

With the win, South Side (4-2, 5-2) cemented its place in the Class-A playoffs.  The Panthers (3-2, 4-3) can clinch with a victory this Friday against Shenango (5-1, 5-2), or with a week 9 win against Vincentian Academy (1-4, 1-6).

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Panthers Use Ground Attack in Blowout Victory

The Riverside Panthers used six rushing touchdowns by five different backs in its decisive 45-13 victory over Union Friday night.

2014GridIron-AD-RHSPanther back Logan Sheridan collected the biggest splash play on the evening, an 82-yard touchdown scamper in the first quarter that pushed Riverside’s lead to 14-0.  Lance Fisher, Dalton Hewitt, and Ricky Wass also reached paydirt in the first half for the Panthers who held a 38-7 halftime cushion.

Hewitt collected two touchdowns on the evening while Marcel Cleckley rounded out the scoring with a second half touchdown run.  Cleckley finished with 145 yards on the ground.

Although the ground attack found its way to the end zone for the Panthers, quarterback Jason Dambach enjoyed another successful game through the air.  Dambach finished with 182 yards passing on nine completions.  The passing yards crested Dambach’s season total over 1,000 yards – the first local passer to surpass the mark.

The Panthers (4-1 Big Seven Conference, 4-2 overall) continue their journey to clinching a playoff berth on Friday with another away contest at South Side.


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From Lincoln High School

The Lincoln High School girls’ volleyball team’s game on Wednesday, Oct. 1, against Hopewell, has been moved to an earlier time.

Please take note that if you plan to attend, the junior varsity squad will take the court at 5 p.m., and the varsity squad goes on at 6 p.m.

The move is in conjunction with the Pittsburgh Pirates playoff game, which is scheduled for 8 p.m.  The earlier times allow everyone involved to be home in time to watch that game.

For more information, please contact the high school office at 724-752-1591.

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PHOTOS: Senior Night for Ellwood City tennis team

On Monday night, the Lincoln High School tennis team celebrated Senior Night against the cross-town-rival Riverside Panthers at Ewing Park.

The teams split the first four matches — Riverside won a singles and doubles, while Ellwood City took two singles — but the Panthers took the final doubles match while sealed the victory for the girls in green, 3-2.

Though the meet did not end in favor of the home team, Ellwood City seniors got to enjoy one last outing in Ewing Park.

Check out photos from the match, and a few group shots of the seniors.

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