The 2011 District 10 Class AAA title holders were bounced from the post-season by Hickory in the Class AA playoffs, 35-13. The Eagle offense was clicking on all cylinders as they were able to post a 47.2 scoring average in their previous five match ups. The Hornets gained 400 rushing yards on 32 carries in their week 11 contest. The big play capability of Hickory proved to be too much as the Eagles fell to their Mercer County rival for the second time in two months.
Grove City will have to find replacements for a strong senior class led by the likes of Kyle Trinch (15 catches, 2 INTs), Chad Williams (725 rushing yards, 66 tackles), Harold Price (717 rushing yards), Shawn Seybert (66 tackles), and Ethan Yalch (57 tackles).
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The Eagles will scrimmage Ellwood City (August 17) and Fort LeBoeuf (August 23) before beginning the regular season schedule by hosting Carrick on Friday, August 30.
2013 Grove City Eagles’ Football Preview
by Vince Pellegrini (@Vince_MYVS)
Head Coach: Jeff Bell, 17th season (110-61)
2012 Record: 9-2 (5-1), District 10 Region 3 (AA)
2012 Post-Season Finish: Lost in District 10 Class AA Semifinal to Hickory, 35-13, on November 17.
2012 Team Statistics
Points Scored: 32.6 (12th in Area)
Passing Yards: 80.1 (881)
Rushing Yards: 276.53041)
Points Allowed: 15.3 (8th in Area)
Passing: Jared Graham – 614 yards, 60.4 Comp % (32-53), 5 TDs
Rushing: Foster Reznor – 122 att, 737 yards, 11 TDs
Receiving: Foster Reznor – 11 rec, 201 yards, 5 TDs
Tackles: Foster Reznor – 55
Sacks: Grant Craig – 2.0
Interceptions: Foster Reznor & Jared Graham – 2
Aug. 30 – Carrick, 7 PM
Sept. 6 – at Wilmington, 7 PM
Sept. 13 – at Reynolds, 7 PM
Sept. 20 – Hickory, 7 PM
Sept. 27 – Greenville, 7 PM
Oct. 4 – Saegertown, 7 PM
Oct. 11 – at Slippery Rock, 7 PM
Oct. 18 – at Titusville, 7 PM
Oct. 25 – Sharon, 7 PM
Offensive Strength: Junior quarterback Jared Graham took over the duties from Tyler Dagres without much difficulty. Graham completed 32 of 53 passes (60.4%) for 614 yards and 5 scores. In 2011, Dagres tossed 36 of 77 for 783 stripes and 6 touchdowns.
Offensive Weakness: Grove City has always been known for their power running game to have more than one featured back. Last year it was Foster Reznor, Chad Williams and Harold Price. Now that Williams and Price have graduated, a new breed of Eagles must step into the role which those two perfected over the years. Last year, Tanner Lucido ran for an average of 6.6 yards per carry (33 attempts, 216 yards) while Jared Sample tacked on another 6.3 yards per tote (15 attempts, 95 yards).
Defensive Strength: Despite losing Kyle Trinch (41 tackles, 2 INTs), the secondary should be about as good as it gets with the return of Foster Reznor (55 tackles, 2 INTs) and Jared Graham (2 INTs).
Defensive Weakness: The defensive line and linebacker corps will have a lot of turnover from last year’s unit. Up front, the team will be without Shawn Seybert (66 tackles) and Devan Smoker (29 tackles). At linebacker, the team lost Chad Williams (66 tackles), Ethan Yalch (57 tackles), Harold Price (35 tackles) and John Lamarca (28 tackles).
Storylines Facing the Eagles
1. Reznor is Ready to Roll. The ability of Foster Reznor was apparent since he ran for 439 yards (7 TDs) as a freshman. He has compiled 28 rushing touchdowns during his career at Grove City. The punishing senior back has also caught 26 balls for 514 yards and 7 scores over the last three seasons. Reznor has received interest from Penn State, Pitt, Cincinnati, West Virginia and Rutgers during the off season.
2. Five Straight League Champions.Grove City seeks their sixth straight region championship. Over that stretch, the Eagles have accumulated a 26-1 conference record. The previous two seasons (2006-07), Grove City racked up a 10-2 mark in the region.
3. Strong Defensive Effort. In each of the last eleven seasons, Grove City’s defense has held their opposition to an average of 18.5 points or less.
Did you know?The last time Grove City finished a season with a losing record was in 2002 (1-8). Since then, they’ve posted a 90-30 mark.