PUNXSUTAWNEY â€” Punxsutawney proved that it is a growing wrestling program by sending two wrestlers to the PIAA Tournament last weekend, and at the lower levels, it has shown that more talent is on the way.
Punxsy will send 29 grapplers to Saturday's Pennsylvania Junior Wrestling Area V Tournament at Clarion University. That's a distinct difference from last year's 17 Area V qualifiers.
PUNXSUTAWNEY â€” A season after more than 2,000 votes were tallied for The Punxsutawney Spirit's first-ever 2010 Fall Sports Male and Female Most Valuable Players last November and December, the public will now have an opportunity to chose the initial 2010-2011 Winter Sports Male and Female Most Valuable Players.
Three athletes have been chosen from each of Punxsy's three winter sports: Boys' basketball, girls' basketball and wrestling. Readers will have a chance to decide one boy among six and one girl among three to create one winner for each gender.
ST. MARYS â€” Two Punxsutawney Area High School girls will compete in the 12th-annual Alice R. Kozel Foundation District IX Basketball All-Star games, which are set to tip-off Saturday, April 2, at Elk County Catholic High School.
The girls' game starts at 4 p.m., followed by the boys game at 6 p.m. At halftime of each game will be a three-point shooting contest with the boys competing during the girlsâ€™ halftime and girls shooting during the boysâ€™ halftime.
CLARION â€” Brookville's two basketball programs ran into the bully on the block in the first round of the PIAA Class AA playoffs and neither team could come away with a win.
The WPIAL regularly beats up on District IX in the state playoffs. The Brookville boys' team (22-3) fell to the WPIAL fifth-seed Jeannette (16-7) 68-57 at Clarion Saturday, while the Lady Raiders (17-8) lost to WPIAL third-seed Bishop Canevin (21-5), 60-39.
Brookville isn't alone, as most District IX teams struggled in the state playoffs against Pittsburgh area schools.
ERIE â€” A Punxsutawney Area High School graduate playing baseball at Mercyhurst College in Erie recently earned two awards.
Senior Nick Gillung, a member of PAHS' 2007 state title-winning team, earned the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) Western Division Pitcher of the Week honor and was one of the Louisville Sluggers Players of the Week after a 15-strikeout game against Palm Beach Atlantic March 3 in Florida.
The left-handed pitcher from Worthville improved to 3-0 on the season after the double-digit strikeout performance.
PUNXSUTAWNEY â€” The Punxsy seventh-grade boys' basketball team finished the season on a three-game winning streak, including a pair of double-digit victories that rounded-out the squad's 13-7 year.
Punxsy concluded the season with a 35-23 win at home Feb. 18. Prior to that, the Chucks won by 16 points at Clearfield. Punxsy first-year coach Darren Sherry was happy with how his squad progressed in its first junior-high year together.
CLARION â€” Brookville coach Bud Baughman knew that after the momentum turned in the third quarter of the Raiders first round PIAA Class AA playoff game at Clarion University against Jeanette that his team was in trouble.
The Jayhawks (16-7) started to shoot the ball better and wore the Raiders (22-3) down on the boards.
Jeannette had all the momentum, and Brookville couldn't seem to stop the Jayhawks.
PITTSBURGH â€” Brookville head coach Mark Powell was happy with the way his team played, even though the Lady Raiders lost 60-39 to Bishop Canevin at North Hills High School in the first round of the PIAA Class AA First Round Friday night.
Brookville (17-8) played in its first state playoff game in nearly a decade and will use the experience as a building block for the program.
"I wasn't sure what to expect," Powell said. "But I think it was a great way for our four seniors to go out. And I think the underclassmen played well, and it should help our program."