The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio


September 12, 2013

The most ancient of rivals

Geneva, Conneaut will square off for the 110th time Friday night

Football has been played at the high school level since the late 19th century.

And during those almost-120 years, no two Ashtabula County squads have matched up more often than Geneva and Conneaut.

The two ancient rivals will meet for the 110th time Friday night at Conneaut Stadium. Geneva broke a tie in the all-time series last fall with a 69-0 walkover at Spire Stadium, giving the Eagles a 52-51 lead, with six games having ended in a deadlock.

Both teams come into this one at 1-1 and coming off losses.

Coach Tony Hassett’s Eagles lost a hard-fought 34-27 verdict to visiting Perry at Spire Stadium, while coach Rocco Dobran’s Spartans took one on the chin at Champion, 36-19.

Geneva did everything but win last week, rushing for more yards (266-204), passing for more yards (139-43) and was even in the turnover ratio against Perry. But Pirate Kyle Beyer set the tone by running the opening kickoff 90 yards for a touchdown.

“We played a heck of a ballgame,” Hassett said. “They made some big plays and that was the difference. The kick return to start the game was huge.  I will take the blame for that because with just four coaches, we have not practiced it enough. We will be better at that special-team phase this week.

“We just made key mistakes that they capitalized on.  I really do not know. We need to sure some things up on our defense and we will be fine.”

When asked if his Eagles let a winnable game get away, Hassett didn’t hesitate.

“Most definitely,” he said. “But in the same breath, we must move on. We cannot dwell on what should have happened.  

“We must get ready for Conneaut.”

Meanwhile, Conneaut was right there at Champion last week, trailing only 14-13 at halftime after Alex Gerdes hauled in a 24-yard touchdown pass from Troy Colucci.

However, the Spartans were outscored in the second half, 22-6, as the Golden Flashes pulled away.

“We did some good things and we saw a lot of areas that we need to improve,” Dobran said. “We threw the ball well when we had protection. Because of that, we were able to stick with the game plan and take what they were giving us.”

Colucci completed 14 of 25 passes for 260 yards, the majority of which went to Gerdes, a sophomore, who had 9 catches for 189 of those yards.

Problem is, Gerdes (concussion)

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  • Spartans knock around Dragons

    After being cooped up in gymnasiums for the better part of the season so far, the Conneaut and Lakeside softball teams were just happy to get onto a diamond. Playing for the first time in nearly a week, the Spartans toppled the Dragons, 11-2, Thursday afternoon at Lakeside.

    April 18, 2014

  • PV can’t get past Mathews

    Thursday afternoon at Pymatuning Valley, the visiting Mathews Mustangs were able to do what every coach hopes for — execute. They played a clean game from start to finish in every facet of the game, and that carried the Mustangs to an 8-2 Northeastern Athletic Conference victory.

    April 18, 2014

  • Scholastic Statistics:

    Matthews 8, PV 2
    at PV

    April 18, 2014

  • Scholastic Schedule:


    Geneva at Edgewood (11)
    Niles McKinley at Edgewood (5)
    Conneaut at Lakeside (4:30)
    Madison at Euclid (4:30)
    Madison at Edgewood (4:30)
    Geneva at Mentor (10, DH)
    Conneaut at Madison (4)

    April 18, 2014

  • Justin Butler Justin time

    It was just four short years ago that Justin Butler was spending his fall on a soccer field.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Don A Don McCormack column: ‘Kids’ stuff’ spurs great responses

    I’m often caught more than a bit off-guard by what stories, features or columns generate responses from you, Loyal Readers, much more so than those who do not.
    For example, the column that appeared in this space a couple of days ago regarding things yours truly and my buddies did as kids prompted more than a few responses.
    A sampling, many of which were posted on my Facebook page:

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • kyle GANG GREEN

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Scholastic Schedule:

    Grand Valley at Maplewood (4:30)
    St. John at Lawrence (4:30)
    Mathews at PV (4:30)
    Fairport at Perry (7:30)
    West Geauga at Madison (4:30)
    Harvey at Riverside (4:30)
    Jefferson at Harding (5)

    April 16, 2014

  • Olivia In transition

    Pymatuning Valley graduate Olivia Holt had a distinct reason she chose to play basketball for Mount Union.
    “They do have tradition,” Holt, the daughter of Gus and Michelle Holt, said. “I’m from PV. We had a tradition of winning and working hard there. I wanted to go somewhere that tradition mattered. I knew I was going to get better by coming here.”

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Don A Don McCormack column: Spring has sprung one big leak

    Paying a Wednesday morning visit to the variety store...

    Think spring?
    If this, um, err, uh... spring... feels a bit unusual for high school baseball and softball teams in Northeast Ohio, it is, to a point.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

Sports Week in Review April 7-12
Spring Sports Practice in Ashtabula County
2014 AP BB Tourney Top 25
2014 AP BB Tourney Scoreboard
2014 AP BB Tourney News
2014 AP BB Tourney Photos
Star Beacon-Ed Batanian Senior Classic
Girls Regional Basketball Action
Week of Champions
Sports Week in Review February 21, 22
Grand Valley at Edgewood Boys Basketball
Sports Week in Review Feb. 3 to 8
Sports Week in Review January 30 to Feb. 1
Sports Week in Review January 13-18
Sports Week in Review January 10 and 11
Sports Video Archive
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AP Video