By Samantha Thomas, staff writer
Saegertown students in grades 6-12 are taking to local shooting ranges for the 2019 Trap Shooting Season. The club, which was founded in 2016, has already become wildly popular in Saegertown, with 38 active members this year. Darin Ashbaugh is the head coach and assistants are Richard Johnson, Jason Bailey, John Jordan, and Doug Jordan. One of the team mottos for this year is: “Creating good stories about kids with guns.”
The team participates in the Crawford County Trap League (a traveling league) that includes Maplewood, Cambridge, and CASH. These teams compete on Tuesday nights. Saegertown is currently 2-1, posting wins over CASH (146-121) in week 1 and Cambridge (161-157). They lost a close match to Maplewood on May 7 (166-160). Their next travel match is on May 14 at the Saegertown Sportsmen’s Club.
In addition to the travel team, all members shoot on Sundays for points that may qualify them for competition at the next level, which is the state shoot at Elysburg, Pa. on June 22. Students competing in the state tournament are divided into divisions based on their age and seasonal average. Outstanding shooters then move on to the National Tournament in Mason, Michigan.
On May 18, team members will participate in a “Shoot for Youth” fundraiser at the Saegertown Sportsmen’s Club. The open registration event will include a day of shooting and a meal. There will also be a Chinese auction, prizes and awards for the best shooters, and other fun activities. “Shoot for Youth” starts at 10 a.m. and will end at 2 p.m. Fifty birds and a pulled pork d dinner are included for $15. Non-shooters pay $8 for dinner.
The club will also host a pike and panfish fishing tournament to raise money for the program. The fundraiser will be held on June 1 on Conneaut Lake. The entry fee will be $60. For more information, contact Darin Ashbaugh at (814)-795-2470 or stop into Myers’ Sports Connections in Saegertown.
By Taylor Munce, sports editor
Senior Will Phelan serves the ball during a recent match against CASH.
The boys volleyball team began their stellar season with a record of 10-0 in the district after an impressive win over McDowell on May 2. They took down the AAA powerhouse in five sets with scores of 18-25, 25-21, 25-21, 17-25, and 16-14.
Senior outside hitter Will Phelan attributes the recent successes to teamwork. “It’s crucial in volleyball to have a good connection throughout the team because we pick each other up when we’re down,” Phelan said. Senior Eli Draa, right side hitter, echoed Phelan’s sentiments. “There are always six people on the court, and if one person gets mad everything crumbles,” said Draa. “We try to work together the best we can.”
Phelan celebrated his last home match with the memorable victory over McDowell, but still looks forward to the remaining matches. “It was great to come out with a win on our senior night, and I loved the energy and spirit from the crowd,” he said. “But we still have some volleyball left to play.”
With their win over Maplewood last night, the Panthers remain undefeated. Tonight, they face rival Meadville Bulldogs for the region title. The Bulldogs are also undefeated.
Action begins at Meadville Area High School at 7 p.m. Follow @PantherPressSHS on Twitter for live updates.
By Mason McClure, staff writer
Senior runner Gabe DeYoung
The Track and Field team traveled to Franklin on Saturday, April 13, where eight runners participated in various track events. Senior runner, Gabe DeYoung, qualified for the District 10 championship, which will take place at Slippery Rock University on May 18, in the 1600 meter race with a time of 4:46:41 and the 3200 meter with a time of 10:33:44. Gabe finished sixth in 3200 and ninth in 1600.
Club adviser William Hetrick said, “Overall, I was very proud of all of athletes who ran, and having Gabe qualify in both events already is exciting as it is his senior year.”
After competing at Franklin, the runners traveled to Hermitage, where both Gabe DeYoung and Paige Fuller, a freshman runner, beat their own personal records in the 3200. “It was a goal to do better and improve,” Fuller said. DeYoung agreed: “I’ve been trying to break my own record of 10:30 for a long time. It’s nice to finally be under that time.”
Hetrick expressed his appreciation for the Track Club, “We have ten members who run; it’s not an approved sport so members cannot receive letters but they volunteer to run and better themselves,” Hetrick said. “I think it’s great they run for their benefit as opposed to just running to receive a letter.”
The team also ran at Oil City at the Oil Country Invitational on May 4. Gabe DeYoung took first place in the boys 1600 with a time of 4:42.92, a personal best. He also took first in the boys 3200 in a time of 10:26.78, also a personal best. The team has two races this week one today and one Thursday at Meadville Area High School.
By Will Phelan, social media editor
Senior Grace Triola
Senior Grace Triola has a knack for driving that recently earned her $300. On April 30, she showcased her students showcased their safety and knowledge in driving during the Crawford County Driver Skills Challenge.
Several schools in the area tested their students before the competition to create teams of three intelligent drivers. The SHS team consisted of seniors Eli Draa, Emmitt Hershelman, and Grace Triola.
Each of the 21 total students participated in four different tests including written, perception, driving, and safety versions.
Despite Emmitt Hershelman placing first in the preliminary team-forming tests, Grace Triola finished third among the field of contenders, earning herself a $300 reward which she plans to put toward college.
As this was her first experience in the competition, Triola anticipated less written testing and more skill evaluation. “I expected the challenge to be more driving based,” she said.
Students observed fabricated situations in which distractions in the form of texting and drinking impaired the ability to drive. Of the event as a whole Triola said, “It was a good opportunity to learn about distracted driving and being safer on the road.”
Photos by Sam Shelenberger, broadcast director
Departing at 2:15 a.m on Friday, April 5 and returning at 1:35 a.m. on Saturday, April 6, fifteen Saegertown students took a whirlwind tour of Washington D.C. that included the Newseum, lunch at Union Station, and a walking tour of the monuments.
Members of the Panther Press staff and the AP Language classes (along with Principal Tom Baker and Bill and Stacey Hetrick) were invited to accompany Cambridge Springs History Day Club students and their teacher Mr. John Werkmeister for a day filled with education and reflection in the nation’s capital.
Highlights of the trip included Panther Press staff members reciting the First Amendment at the Newseum, listening to the wisdom of Mr. Werkmeister as he narrated the tour of the monuments (Jefferson, Lincoln, WWII, Korea, Vietnam, Marine Corps, Martin Luther King Jr., FDR), and marveling at the beauty of the cherry blossom trees in full bloom.
The trip also included a lunch stop and tour of Union Station. Although the day was drizzly, the students agreed that they would most definitely do it again.
(Special thanks to Mr. John Werkmeister from Cambridge Springs High School for organizing the trip and sharing the story of our country on the monuments tour. We look forward to traveling with you again.)
By Mason McClure, staff writer
SHS Track Club is just that–a club. There are no varsity letters to earn or Region titles to win. Runners participate in track just to see if they can meet the qualifying standard for the District 10 Championship held at Slippery Rock University on Saturday, May 8.
The runners, including seniors Gabe DeYoung and Ben Crowl, as well as several other returners like junior Maddie Mondi, are hard at practice to get ready. They are able to run at MASH’s home meets and various invitationals in the region, such as at Franklin, Fairview, and Hermitage.
Coach Bill Hetrick said, “We are really just a great group of kids who run various distances from the 100-meter dash to the 3200-meter run, to see if they can make Districts.” Senior captain Gabe DeYoung said, “I want everyone to work towards their goals and work hard during practice.”
By Sam Shelenberger and Dustin Steiger, broadcast editor and arts and entertainment editor
Saegertown sophomores will take a brief recess from their regularly scheduled classes for Saegertown’s 12th annual Pennsylvania Business Week from March 11-15. They will be divided into three teams (companies), supervised by Mr. Steve Simcheck, Mr. Brian Costa, and Mr. Richard Rutkowski. Each group will also have a business adviser from the community.
The majority of the week is devoted to developing product ideas, prototypes, and marketing strategies. On Friday, team members will present their efforts to panels of judges and participate in a trade show in the gym. Each member of the winning team will receive $100 cash at the end of the day.
Thanks to the sponsorship of ACES (Americans for Competitive Enterprise System, Inc.) and the hard work of coordinator Mr. Tim Houck, Business Week has been a successful event at Saegertown High School since 2007.
“When I was first hired [at Saegertown], I had the opportunity to go to Fort LeBoeuf and see their Business Week,” Mr. Houck said. “I thought that we should try it at PENNCREST, and more specifically, at Saegertown. Cambridge was the first school to try it, and we followed the year after.”
“I loved watching our visions become reality,” said senior Claudia Fetzner, CEO of the winning company ‘Lifted Shoes’ two years ago. “I thought it was a lot of fun once it came together.”
Fetzner shared a nugget of wisdom with the sophomores: “Work together. Everyone has their specialties.”
By Nick Archacki and Will Phelan, news editor and social media editor
The Cambridge Springs bowling team, which includes bowlers from all three PENNCREST high schools, has dominated the season in the Ven-Craw (Venango and Crawford counties) high school bowling league as the Blue Devils primary team is among the top forces on the Ven-Craw leaderboard for the fourth straight year.
For the past three seasons, Cambridge has fought to secure a spot in the Ven-Craw championship but was denied by Saegertown in 2016 and Cranberry in both 2017 and 2018. With the addition of two Saegertown bowlers, senior Scott Proper and two-time Ven-Craw league champion, junior Nick Archacki, Cambridge is a top competitor in the league and has a great chance to advance to the championship this season.
The Cambridge Springs Blue team has owned the lumber since the start of the season. The Blue team currently sits tied for second place, 0.5 points behind the Ven-Craw team leader, Conneaut Lake Blue. The Cambridge Black team holds sixth place. Both teams are currently eligible to make the Ven-Craw playoffs with one match left in the season, as the top eight teams earn a playoff spot.
Regarding the individual standings, Cambridge Springs’ Nick Archacki leads the fifty-eight bowlers of Ven-Craw with an average of 222.33 after 15 games. Following Archacki, his teammate, Maplewood’s Issac Heim, has an average of 206.63 while three bowlers from Conneaut Lake round out the top five with averages between 205 and 199.
The final match for Cambridge Springs and the Ven-Craw league for the regular season is this Sunday at Plaza Lanes in Meadville.