Wellsville Hopes To Build On Strong Finish
By KYLE LUTZ
WELLSVILLE — In Rob Ramsey’s first year at the helm at Wellsville, he experience some growing pains. However, when a team is young, it is imperative to let the players know the main goal of the season. That’s pretty much what happened with the 2017 Tigers.
“Last year we were very young, very inexperienced,” Ramsey said. “As the season went, we grew to acknowledge attention to detail was a very important part of what we were trying to get done. The kids started to believe in themselves and we finished the season pretty strong.”
Indeed Wellsville did.
After winning the second game of the season against Edison, the Tigers dropped their next six games. However, they were able to pump out victories in the final two games of the season to finish 3-7. Wellsville defeated Leetonia (42-35) and Toronto (40-34) in high-scoring affairs.
After finishing 2017 on a strong note, Wellsville will have plenty more to smile about as it returns 16 lettermen. The Tigers, though, did lose some vital pieces.
“Last year we lost one of our better linemen in Ryan Miller, he graduated and moved on to college to pursue his academic interest,” Ramsey said. “We lost Brandon Patterson, who was a utility guy for us who played any position that needed to be played. Matt Rawson was a real good receiver and defensive back for us.”
Zane Pearson was another key player that picked up his diploma in May.
For 2018, there will be plenty of talent on both sides of the ball. At the quarterback position, Troy Carter (5-9, 215), a sophomore will be under center.
Ramsey also have plenty of options at running back in Derrick Suggs (5-10, 175), a returning senior and juniors Connor Ramsey (5-9, 150), Justin Sarge (5-5, 150) and Jason Tice (5-7, 140).
The wide receivers look to be Darien Suggs (5-10, 150), Connor Ramsey, junior Quinton Burgess (6-3, 170) and senior Seth Keener (5-10, 160).
The offensive line will be anchored by senior and three-year letterman Justin Thirtyacre (5-10, 250). Thirtyacre is the epitome of what a team leader is.
Last season, he started at center, but broke his thumb. Instead of sitting out, he moved over and played tackle for the rest of the season.
“He’s that type of kid, man. He won’t take ‘no’ for an answer. He’s amazing,” Rob Ramsey said.
Braden Cartwright (6-3, 230) will take control of the snaps this season while Thirtyacre will stay at tackle.
Sophomores Caden Weeley (5-11, 225), Austin Giralico (5-9, 190) will also be on the line while seniors Gage Ramos (5-8, 215) and Colton Green (5-10, 275) return to the field after having their season cut short last year due to injury.
Ramos was hurt the last four games while Green suffered an MCL injury that sidelined him for the last three weeks of the season.
On the defensive side, Thirtyacre, who led the team last year with 90 tackles returns to the line. Cartwright, Green, Giralico also return. Also looking to see some playing time is freshman Tyler Stanley (6-2, 250). The defensive ends will be junior Draven Crow (6-4, 175) and senior Cole Corbin (5-10, 205).
Derrick Suggs, Weekley and Sarge will support the linebacker position.
While Rob Ramsey described Darien Suggs and Connor Ramsey as a couple of lockdown backs.
“We got two young kids that are freshmen that have really give them a push to make sure they’re getting better and that’s the two twins right now. Those kids have worked their tails off too, so we have those corners being pretty good right there,” Rob Ramsey said.
The safeties will have options with Burgess, Keener, Tice and Gary Wilson (5-7, 135).
For special teams, the punter will be Burgess or Darien Suggs.
The kicker will be Casey Lemasters (5-8, 185), a sophomore who is also a soccer player.
Briar Cunningham, Isaac Sell and Zion Clark-Mike are the remaining juniors while Gavin Whitman and Corbin Hall round out the sophomore class.
Tanner Rambo, Valen Krzyston, Chance Woolley, Logan Cunningham, Darius Stanley, Issac Ice, and Garrett Krzyston are the freshmen.
“We want to win like every other coach and every other team,” Ramsey said. “We want our kids to learn the value of playing together, trusting each other and leave everything out on the field on every Friday night. I think if we can get them to believe in that and believe in each other, that the outcome can be a positive thing for Wellsville High School again.”
Rob Ramsey is assisted by Jon Carter (offensive coordinator), Shawn Carter (quarterback/DB), Jim Arcuragi (TE/DE), Pat Wright (WR/DB), Vinny Giordano (RB/LB) and Rob Long (OL/DL).