September 12, 2022 Tim Birney

WAVERLY — Junior Lea VanAllen delivered a pair long second-half goals to lift Waverly to a 2-0 win over crosstown rival Athens here Monday night in non-league girls soccer action at Memorial Stadium.

“This game was a true test for us,” said Waverly coach Tara Hogan.

“I thought the girls played a really tough match,” said Athens coach Rich Pitts. “We battled right to the end, had our chances in the second half, but just couldn’t convert.”

The majority of the first half was spent in the Athens defensive end, but the game went scoreless into the halftime intermission.

“We were happy with the way the girls started the game,” said Hogan. “In the first half, our forwards — Kiley Stillman, Addy Westbrook, and Ryleigh Judson — were playing their positions well and put a lot of pressure on their defense right from the start.”

VanAllen took a feed from 8th-grader Mackenzie Olmsted, and fired a hard, low shot from 25 yards out into the corner of the net just 2 1/2 minutes into the second half to give the Lady Wolverines a 1-0 lead.

With 22 minutes remaining, VanAllen, off a feed from senior Kennedy Westbrook, and bent a shot from outside the right hash from 28 yards out over the keeper’s outstretch hands, and into the net to make it 2-0.

Hogan also credited her defense, which allowed just two shots-on-goal, for its part in the win.

“We tried Claire Clonch in goal tonight and she did not disappoint,” she said. “She has seen time in goal before, but hasn't played there much for us.  She really stepped up and was a strong presence on the field.

“We also switched up our starting defensive line with Kennedy Westbrook being shifted back,” noted Hogan. “We wanted to scope out Athens before we really started to push up.

“I continue to sing our defenders’ praises,” she continued. “They — Kennedy, Paige Robinson, and Olivia Robinson — with the help of Makenzie Olmsted as sweeper, are just so smart and incredibly reliable. Nothing gets past them and if they do, they are phenomenal about covering for each other.  

“And, Makenzie Olmsted is such a force and is everywhere she needs to be to support all the lines,” added Hogan. (Assistant coach Berent) and I are very proud of the girls never quitting and for playing a smart, strong game.”

Pitts said his team will benefit from the loss.

“However, we tried some new things and I like what we learned as a team,” he said. “I’m looking forward to the rest of the week.

“Thanks to Waverly for having us, they were a good match up that we needed at the right time,” added Pitts.

Waverly had an 8-2 edge in shots-on-goal, and a 4-2 advantage in corner kicks.

Senior Karlee Bartlow had six saves in net for Athens, while 8th-grader Clare Clonch had two saves for the Lady Wolverines.

“Karlee Bartlow had the best game of her young career,” said Pitts. “I’m super-proud of her.”

Waverly, now 3-0, hosts divisional rival Notre Dame Wednesday night, while Athens (1-2) travels to North Penn-Mansfield Tuesday.

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September 10, 2022 Tim Birney

TIOGA JUNCTION — Athens advanced to the semifinals, while Sayre fell in the quarterfinals — both losing to eventual runner-up Coudersport — here Saturday at the annual Williamson Volleyball Tournament.

Coudersport and NEB both finished 6-2 in Pool B, with Coudersport winning the pool via the tiebreaker. Athens was third at 4-4, with Northern Potter and Towanda, fourth and fifth, respectively — both at 2-6.

Williamson and Galeton both finished 6-2 in Pool A, with the host Lady Tigers winning the tiebreaker and the pool. Canton was third at 3-5, taking the tiebreaker from Sayre, which finished fourth at 3-5. Troy finished fifth at 2-6.

In the quarterfinals, Athens upended Galeton, 25-19, while Sayre dropped a 25-19 decision to Coudersport.

Athens was then swept by Coudersport, 25-20 and 25-18, in the semifinals.

Williamson swept Coudersport by scores of 25-16 and 25-13 in the championship match.

Sayre travels to Canton Tuesday, then hosts Athens Thursday.

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September 10, 2022 Tim Birney

ONEONTA — Sophomore Sara Bronson and senior Emma Bronson both ran to top-10 finishes to pace Athens in a fifth-place finish here Saturday at the Dave Forbes Cross Country Invitational.

The Athens junior high boys won the team title, while the Wildcat boys placed ninth.

"Today was a good start for us on both the boys and girls sides of things,” said Athens boys coach Mike Bronson. “For our more experienced kids like Ethan Hicks, and Emma and Sara Bronson it was a good rust-buster and good for them to get back into a race.

“It gave our younger or new runners a good opportunity to gain some experience in a bigger race,” noted Bronson. “For the guys, we ran a pretty young group in the varsity race today, we had one senior (Nate Prickitt) and then the rest were freshman or sophomores, so they need some time to just gain experience running at that level.

“We know we still have work to do, but I'm pretty happy with where we are for this early in the season,” added Bronson.

"The kids have been anxious to get a race in and we were excited to see where they stand,” said Athens girls coach Scott Riley.

“The team has a good balance on youth and experience,” noted Riley. “For many kids on high school and junior high teams, this was their first cross-country race ever. We were pleased with how they ran with a good opener across the board. In all the races, we had some really good standout performances with top place finishers.

“Today definitely gave us a good sampling of where we are starting the season and that’s pretty exciting,” added Riley.

Sara Bronson finished third in a time of 21:08.7, and Emma Bronson was 10th in 22:06.3 to pace the Lady Wildcats.

Junior Thea Bentley finished 29th in a time of 23:48.2, while junior Emily Henderson was 58th in 27:42.5, and junior Janae Harkins (35:15.9) and sophomore Mary Rose Bertsch (36:52.3) were 82nd and 83rd, respectively.

Ithaca cruised to the team title with 47 placement points, while runner-up Union-Endicott had 69 points, third-place Horseheads had 89 points, Oneonta was fourth with 112 points, and Athens tallied 127 points.

Sophomore Ethan Hicks paced the Wildcats, who finished ninth in the 12-team field.

Hicks clocked in at 18:28 to place 15th, while sophomore Carter Lewis was 39th in 20:02.3, sophomore Ronel Ankam was 47th in 20:36.7, senior Nate Prickitt was 49th in 20:42.3, freshman Sam Sensing was 59th in 21:38.4, and sophomore Aiden Oldroyd was 71st in 22:44.7.

Ithaca ran away with the team title, totaling 26 placement points, while runner-up Oneonta had 96, and third-place Saqouit Valley tallied 101 points. Athens amassed 198 points.

In the junior varsity race, Athens finished sixth of the six complete teams.

Junior Caleb Simwale led Athens with a 27th-place finish in 22:13, while sophomore Pierce Oldroyd was 49th in 24:05.4, freshman Aiden Pollock-Sinsabaugh was 54th in 24:26.7, freshman Andrew DeForrest was 60th in 25:03.8, and sophomore Lohith Kinthala was 70th in 27:15.3.


All five of Athens’ scorers, led by Graham Wanck, finished in the top 10 to lead the junior Wildcats to the team title in the junior high division.

"In the Junior High races, the boys ran a really nice team race today with six of them finishing in the top 12 of their race,” said Bronson. “in the girls race, Alissa Vough, in her first race, ran a great race to finish a really close second"

Athens claimed the team title with 24 placement points, while Delhi was runner-up with 38 points, and Union-Endicott was third with 84 points.

Wanck won the race in a time of 7:06.1, while Eli Hicks was fourth in 7:50.6, and Jacob Shores was fifth in 8:16.6.

Zachary Fisher finished ninth in a time of 8:40.1, and Matt Rossettie was 10th in 8:40.6.

Abram Steinfelt finished 12th for Athens in a time of 8:46.5, while Darious Miller was 28th in 9:47.2, Isaac Roy was 37th in 10:31.0, and Johnny Roberts was 50th in 13:04.2.

Alissa Vough — one of two Athens runners — finished second in the girls junior race.

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September 10, 2022 Tim Birney

GALETON — Senior Brayden Post scored a pair of goals to lead Athens to a 3-1 win over Galeton here Saturday night in NTL boys soccer action.

Post scored his first goal with 22 minutes remaining in the first half to give the Wildcats a 1-0 lead, but the Tigers scored 12 minutes later to send the game into the halftime intermission at 1-1.

With 16:28 remaining in the contest, Post scored again to make it 2-1, and senior Levent Van Helden, off a feed from junior Korey Miller, tacked on an insurance goal about two minutes later.

Athens registered a 10-2 advantage in shots-on-goal and had a 5-2 edge in corner kicks. The Tigers did not have a shot or a corner kick after the intermission.

Senior Grant Liechty had one save in net for the Wildcats.

Athens, now 4-2 overall and 4-0 in league play, hosts Wellsboro Wednesday in a key NTL match-up.

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September 9, 2022 Tim Birney

WYALUSING — Athens scored four TDs in the second quarter on its way to a 55-7 win over Wyalusing here Friday night in NTL Large School Division football action.

Senior Caleb Nichols put the Wildcats on the board in the first quarter with a 14-yard TD run. Senior Mason Lister split the uprights with the PAT kick to make it 7-0.

Nichols scored again early in the second quarter, this time on a 6-yard TD run to make it 14-0.

Junior Kaden Parrish scored on Athens’ next possession, busting 10 yards up the middle. Lister PAT kick made it 21-0.

The next four Wildcat scores came on the arm of Lister, who completed 7 of his 9 pass attempts for 198 yards and four TDs.

Lister connected with sophomore Xavier Watson on a 64-yard TD pass late in the second quarter to make it 28-0.

In the final minute of the first half, senior Lucas Horton hauled in a 33-yard TD pass. Lister’s fifth PAT kick of the half made it 35-0.

Early in the third quarter, Nichols hauled in a 30-yard TD pass out of the backfield. Lister’s kick made it 42-0.

Watson’s second TD grab, this one for 25 yards, gave the Wildcats a 48-0 lead entering the fourth quarter.

Sophomore Keegan Congdon provided Athens’ final TD of the night with a 6-yard run. Lister tacked on the PAT kick to make it 55-0.

Moments later, Wyalusing’s Joey Gonsauls raced 87 yards with the ensuing kickoff to put the Rams on the board. Zach Fenton’s PAT kick provided the final margin.

The Wildcats rushed for 200 yards in the win, with Nichols leading the way with 86 yards and two TDs on seven carries. Congdon added 32 yards and one TD on five carries, and Lister chipped in with 27 yards on five carries.

Watson led Athens’ receivers with two catches for 89 yards and two TDs, while Horton had two grabs for 52 yards and one TD.

The Wildcat defense limited Wyalusing to 108 yards in total offense, including just 16 passing yards.

Alex Hunsinger led the Rams with 40 rushing yards on 16 carries, and Liam Franklin added 28 yards on four carries.

Defensively, senior Bradley Bouck had an interception for the Wildcats.

Athens, now 2-1, returns to action Friday at Wellsboro.

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September 8, 2022 Tim Birney

ATHENS — Athens overcame a slow start and rallied for a 3-1 win over Cowanesque Valley here Thursday night in NTL volleyball action.

The Lady Indians won the first set 25-23, but the Lady Wildcats bounced back to win the next three sets by scores of 25-14, 15-9, and 25-20.

“We had a slow start, which CV totally jumped on,” said Athens coach Heather Hanson. “CV played well tonight and was very determined. We needed a reality check that teams aren’t going to wait for us to catch up.

“We need to refocus on basics and communication.

“Everyone saw playing time tonight which is awesome to see the team mesh with each other and not panic,” she noted.

“I know we are finding our rhythm right now,” Hanson added. “I am not patient when it comes to that part, but it’s not about me it’s about the team believing and trusting in each other.  It’s on them to become that unstoppable team if that’s what they want.

Audrey Clare led Athens with nine service points, including six aces, 14 kills, two setter assists and 13 digs, while Jenny Ryan had two points (two aces), eight kills, 24 assists, and eight digs, and Braelynn Wood had nine kills and seven digs.

Cassy Friend had two points, three kills, three blocks, and six digs in the win, while Kassie Babcock had three points, seven kills, and one block, Ella Coyle recorded seven digs, and Keaton Wiles added four points — all aces.

Athens, now 2-1, returns to action Saturday at the Williamson Tournament.

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September 8, 2022 Tim Birney

ROME, Pa. — Athens scored twice early, but Northeast Bradford shut them down the rest of the way and rallied for a 4-2 win here Thursday afternoon in NTL girls soccer action.

The Lady Wildcats scored on two of their first three shots-on-goal, with senior Ally Thoman putting the Lady Wildcats on the board a little more than six minutes into the game.

Sophomore Addy Wheeler made it 2-0 just 9 1/2 minutes later.

NEB’s Kayleigh Thoman scored twice in a nine-minute span to tie the game at 2-2 with 7:52 remaining in the first half.

Alena Beebe scored just 50 seconds later to give the Lady Panthers the lead for good, at 3-2.

Melanie Shumway tacked on an insurance goal midway through the second half for NEB.

Athens had a 20-19 advantage in shots-on-goal in the contest.

Karlee Bartlow had 15 saves in net for the Lady Wildcats.

Athens, now 1-1, travels to NP-Mansfield Tuesday.

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September 7, 2022 Tim Birney

ATHENS — Sophomore Isaac Wilcox, off a feed from junior Korey Miller, scored 84 seconds into the game, and the Athens defense made it stand in a 1-0 win over North Penn-Liberty here Wednesday afternoon in NTL boys soccer action.

The Wildcats opened the season wins over Troy and North Penn-Liberty early last week, then dropped decisions to Montoursville and Benton at the Montoursville Tournament Saturday.

“It was nice to get the win,” said Athens coach Jake Lezak. “After dropping the last two and we have a lot of beat-up bodies right now with some guys out that didn’t play at all today. I think some of the younger guys and some of our regular subs stepped in and played really well.”

Athens controlled play throughout the game, outshooting NP-L, 11-2, and taking 13 corner kicks to the Mountaineers’ three.

Athens senior Grant Liechty had three saves in net, while NP-L freshman Deakon Valentine recorded nine.

Athens, now 3-2, returns to action Saturday at Galeton.

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September 6, 2022 Tim Birney

CANTON — Canton continued it strong early-season play, sweeping Athens here Tuesday night to improve to 3-0 in NTL volleyball action.

The Lady Warriors won by scores of 25-17, 25-17, and 25-21.

“Tonight was the Wildcats versus the Wildcats,” said Athens coach Heather Hanson. “If we got the serve over, then we couldn’t get the pass. If we got the pass, we couldn’t get the hit. There was no fun in our fundamentals tonight.

“Maybe it was having a three-day break and only practicing on Monday that got us,” noted Hanson. “These girls play hard and work hard. So do other teams, so we always need to rise to the occasion and be psyched up and we were not tonight.

“I am going to take my own advice with what I told the girl,” she added. “There is no sense dwelling on it. It will waste too much time and that time needs to be focused on getting reworked for CV (Thursday) and the Williamson Tournament this Saturday.

Jenny Ryan led Athens with 12 digs, 10 setter assists, four kills, and block, while Kassie Babcock had 10 digs, two kills, and one block, and Audrey Clare had three points, including two aces, seven kills, six digs, and two assists.

“Jenny Ryan played great tonight having a solo block as a 5-3 setter and being our top hitter,” said Hanson. “Kassie Babcock had some huge hits, getting some momentum going.”

Braelynn Wood four kills and eight digs for the Lady Wildcats, while Ella Coyle nine digs and two kills, and, Cailin McDaniel had two points, two kills, and one block.

Athens, now 1-1, hosts Cowanesque Valley Thursday.

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September 6, 2022 Tim Birney

MANSFIELD — Athens’ top five golfers finished in the top 15 to lead the Wildcats to their fourth straight first-place finish in NTL boys golf action here Tuesday afternoon at Corey Creek Golf Club.

Athens, which edged Wyalusing by six strokes last week, topped the Rams by just three strokes this week — 362 to 365. North Penn-Mansfield finished third with a four-player aggregate score of 377, while Wellsboro was fourth at 380, Cowanesque Valley was fifth at 406, Towanda was sixth at 442, and Sayre placed seventh at 543.

Athens junior Evan Cooper finished second on the day with an 82 — four shots off the pace of low-medalist North Penn-Mansfield senior Andrew Green, who fired a 78.

Athens senior Cameron Sullivan placed sixth on the day with a 90, while sophomore Dylan Saxon tied for 10th with a 93, and junior Brady Darrow was 14th with a 97.

Athens senior Lucas Kraft finished 15th with a non-scoring round of 98, and junior Nicholas Jacob was 18th with a 102.

Senior Kegan Hayford led Sayre with a round of 128, while junior David Hall Jr. shot a 129, freshman Cole Homer carded a 130, and freshman Ryne Osmond tacked on a 156.

The Athens and Sayre golfers return to action next Tuesday at the River Valley Country Club in Westfield, Pa.

1. Athens, 24-0; 2. Wyalusing, 20-4; 3. Wellsboro, 15-9; 4. NP-Mansfield, 13-11; 5. Cowanesque Valley, 8-16; 6. Towanda, 4-20; 7. Sayre, 0-24.

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September 3, 2022 Tim Birney

MONTOURSVILLE — Athens dropped a pair of close decisions here Saturday to finish fourth at the Montoursville boys soccer tournament.

The Wildcats gave up a goal late in a 2-1 loss to Montoursville in the opening game, then dropped a 2-0 decision to Benton in the consolation game.

Montoursville 2, Athens 1
Montoursville scored late in the game to pull out a 2-1 non-league win over Athens here Saturday morning in the opening round of the Montoursville Tournament.

After a scoreless first half, Mason Winslow scored about 2 1/2 minutes into the second half to give the Warriors a 1-0 lead.

The Wildcats knotted the game midway through the second half. Senior Levent Van Helden headed a throw-in from junior Korey Miller to senior Brayden Post, who found the back of the net to make it 1-1.

With 5:12 remaining, Wyatt Fry, off a feed from Winslow, scored to give Montoursville a 2-1 lead.

Montoursville had a 9-2 advantage in shots-on-goal, and an 8-4 edge in corner kicks.

Senior Grant Liechty registered eight saves in net for the Wildcats.

Consolation Game
Benton 2, Athens 0

Benton scored a pair of second-half goals in a 2-0 win over Athens in the consolation game of the Montoursville Tournament.

After a scoreless first half, Benton scored just 76 seconds into the second half to take a 1-0 lead.

The Tigers added a penalty kick with 9 minutes remaining to seal the win.

Benton had a 9-1 advantage in shots-on-goal, and a 10-2 edge in corner kicks.

Liechty recorded seven saves in net for the Wildcats.

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September 2, 2022 Tim Birney

ATHENS — Senior Mason Lister threw four TD passes, and senior Caleb Nichols ran for two to lead Athens to a 48-0 win over Cowanesque Valley here Friday night in NTL football action at Alumni Stadium.

“We were better tonight, but we were far from perfect,” said Athens coach Jack Young.

Athens amassed 318 total yards — 120 passing and 198 rushing — in total offense, while holding CV to just 56 yards.

“We worked on our spread running game this week, that was one of the things we wanted to accomplish, and I think we did a pretty good job,” said Young.

“We’re still trying to figure out what we can hang our hat on offensively. We have a lot of weapons … we need to be patient and figure out what we do best,” added Young.

Lister completed 11 of his 16 pass attempts for 120 yards and four TDs, with senior Lucas Horton hauling in four receptions for 61 yards, and two TDs, junior Josh Martin pulling in four catches for 37 yards, and one TD, and sophomore Xavier Watson adding three grabs for 22 yards, and one TD.

One of the keys in the win, said Young, was giving Lister time to throw, a luxury he was not afforded in the Week 1 loss to Executive Education Academy.

“We had some breakdowns, but again pass protection is an on-going process,” said Young. “We saw a big improvement on the offensive line this week.

“We have some depth on the offensive line, so we’ve been moving people around to see what group fits best,” he added.

Nichols led the Athens ground game with 96 yards and two TDs on seven carries, and Keathley added 90 yards and one TD on four carries. In all, the Wildcats had 198 rushing yards on 17 carries.

Cowanesque Valley lost nine yards on its first possession, and punted the ball away.

Athens’ first possession ended on downs at the CV 42, but the Indians gave the ball back on downs at their 45 moments later.

On the next play, Nichols broke through the right side of the line, slid to the sideline, and raced 46 yards to paydirt. Lister added the PAT kick to make it 7-0 with 6:11 remaining in the first quarter.

“(Caleb) is sneaky back there,” said Young. “He’s a little different than some of the backs we’ve had. He’s slick hitting the holes, and does a nice job.”

The Wildcats forced another CV punt on its next possession, and sophomore Kolsen Keathley returned it 35 yards to the Indian 21.

After a penalty made it first-and-15, Lister and Horton hooked up on a 26-yard TD pass to make it 14-0 with 3:35 left in the first quarter.

Following another CV three-and-out, Athens took over at its own 49.

The Wildcats lost nine yards on the first play of the possession, but completions of 14 and 5 yards from Lister to Martin, sandwiched around a 27-yard run by Nichols moved the ball to the CV 14.

On the first play of the second quarter, Lister dropped the ball over the defensive line to Martin on a middle screen, and he weaved his way into the end zone for a 14-yard TD completion. Lister’s PAT kick made it 21-0 with 11:52 remaining in the first half.

CV’s next possession ended on downs when a pass attempt on a fake punt fell incomplete, giving the Wildcats the ball at CV 38.

After runs of 6 and 8 yards by Lister, Nichols ripped off a 24-yard TD run, breaking a tackle at the 10 on his way to the end zone. Lister’s PAT kick made it 28-0 with 8:29 left in the half.

On CV’s first play of the ensuing possession, sophomore Tim Freeman was sacked and stripped of the ball by Athens sophomore Caleb Nason. Senior Austin Malanoski scooped up the fumble and rumbled 10 yards to the Indian 8.

On Athens’ first play, Lister found Watson open in the end zone for an 8-yard TD connection. The PAT kick made it 35-0 with 8:08 remaining in the half.

CV picked up its first three first downs of the game on its ensuing possession, with Freeman and Fletcher Good alternating carries from the Indian 39 to the Wildcat 16.

On second-and-4 at the Athens 16, CV QB Graham Hess was sacked and stripped by Glen Romberger, with Martin pouncing on the loose ball to end the drive.

With the “mercy rule” in effect to start the second half, Athens chewed up nearly half the third quarter with a seven-play scoring drive to up its lead to 41-0.

The key plays in the drive were a 28-yard run by Keathley, an 11-yard scramble by Lister, a 12-yard pass from Lister to Horton.

The Wildcats capped the drive with a 16-yard TD pass Lister to Horton with 6:21 left in the third quarter.

After another CV three-and-out, Keathley capped a penalty-filled possession with a 48-yard TD run with 15 seconds left in the third quarter. Lister’s PAT kick provided the final margin.

“Kolsen Keathley is a playmaker,” said Young.

The Indians had another three-and-out in its next possession, but got the ball back one play later thanks to an Athens fumble.

CV picked up three first downs, including a 4-yard run by Carter Ackley on fourth-and-4, and drove the ball to the Athens 10, before turning it over on downs on the final play of the game.

Good led the CV ground game with 28 yards on 11 carries, and Freeman added 22 yards on 12 carries. In all, the Indians rushed for 37 yards on 41 carries, thanks partly to several QB sacks, which count as rushing yards.

Hess completed 3 of 9 passes for 19 yards, with Ackley hauling in two for 8 yards, and Good grabbing one for 11 yards.

Athens, now 1-1, travels to Wyalusing (1-1) Friday, while CV (0-2) hosts Montgomery (0-2) Friday.

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September 1, 2022 Tim Birney

ATHENS — Athens pulled out a close decision in the second set on its way to a season-opening sweep of Northeast Bradford here Thursday night in NTL volleyball action.

The Lady Wildcats won by scores of 25-20, 25-23, and 25-15.

“It’s a beautiful start to the season,” said Athens coach Heather Hanson. “The girls were extremely fired up.

“We definitely got the nervous jitters out of the way, and then I got to see some incredible plays and hitting I hadn’t seen before,” she noted.

“Jenny Ryan, one of our captains, did an excellent job running the floor, making it look incredibly easy, with 30 assists tonight and six of the eight girls getting multiple kills. This girl moves the ball!

“Sophomore Kassie Babcock had an incredible game tonight,” added Hanson. “If she wasn’t smashing the ball down, she was hitting the floor digging. It was incredible and so exciting to see Jenny and her connect like that.”

Ryan, a senior, led Athens with six points, four kills, two digs, and 30 setter assists, while Babcock had two points, six kills, and nine digs, and senior Audrey Clare had five points, a team-high seven kills, two assists, and two digs.

Senior Cassy Friend recorded four points, three kills, and three blocks, while senior Cailin McDaniel registered five kills and two digs, senior Braelynn Wood had six kills and a team-high 11 digs, and sophomore Ella Coyle added 10 digs.

Cassy Friend was a wall tonight, with three solo blocks and a ton of blocked balls that were kept in play, but definitely got the girls fired up,” said Hanson.

Cailin McDaniel showed control in her offense,” she noted. “Audrey Clare had solid hits and digs. When Audrey hits a ball the sound it makes is just the best! She played one heck of a game tonight.

“Braelynn Wood had amazing shots tonight,” continued Hanson. “She knew where the open spots were and focused on getting the ball there. Her ball control and ability to read hitters was awesome.

Ella Coyle and Braelynn (Wood) had double-digit digs tonight,” added Hanson. “Ella is starting to show her passion and hunger for getting that ball.  She is everywhere and showing that confidence and craziness only liberos show.”

Athens returns to action Tuesday at Canton.

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September 1, 2022 Tim Birney

TOWANDA — Led by junior Evan Cooper, Athens had four scorers in the top 10 to win its third straight league match here Thursday afternoon in NTL golf action at the Towanda Country Club.

Athens fired a four-player aggregate score of 348, edging out runner-up Wyalusing by six strokes. Wellsboro finished third with a 377, while NP-Mansfield was fourth at 390, Cowanesque Valley was fifth at 401, Towanda was sixth at 448, and Sayre finished seventh at 461.

Cooper shot a 78 on the par-71 TCC course to finish second on the day, with Wyalusing junior Nick Salsman earning low-medal honors with a round of 75.

Senior Cameron Sullivan placed fourth with an 86, while sophomore Dylan Saxon was eighth with a 91, and junior Brady Darrow was 10th with a 93.

Senior Lucas Kraft carded a non-scoring round of 93 to finish 13th on the day, and junior Nicholas Jacob was 19th with a 101.

Senior Jackson Hubbard, in his first action of the season, led Sayre with a round of 106, and junior Tanner Green carded a 111.

Kegan Hayford shot a 121 for the Redskins, while freshman Ryne Osmond had a 123, and junior David Hall Jr. and freshman Karter Green carded non-scoring rounds of 128 and 139, respectively.

Athens and Sayre return to action Tuesday at Corey Creek Golf Club in Mansfield.

1. ATHENS ....... 18-0
2. WYALUSING .. 15-3
3. WELLSBORO . 12-6
4. NP-MANS ...... 9-9
5. C.VALLEY ..... 6-12
6. TOWANDA .... 3-15
7. SAYRE ......... 0-18

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September 1, 2022 Tim Birney

ATHENS — Senior Ally Thoman scored a pair of first-half goals, and freshman Kaitlyn Sutton netted a hat trick in her first varsity game to lead Athens to a season-opening, 6-3, win over Williamson here Thursday afternoon in NTL girls soccer action at Alumni Stadium.

“I thought we had a bit of a slow start, then all of a sudden we played Athens soccer,” said Athens coach Rich Pitts.

“I was happy with our voice and how we moved the ball on possession,” he noted. “Our build up and play on the offensive final third showed how much we work on it in training. We were very clinical in our goals with great movement on and off the ball.

“Defensively, we played well with three new starters,” he continued. “A few scary moments, one that cost us a goal but the four of them worked their way into the game, and fixed the issues that gave them trouble as the game progressed.

“I like our front six offensively, and think we have some real quality with six goals by three different players,” added Pitts.

Thoman started off the scoring with a breakaway goal 10 minutes into the contest, Williamson answered with a breakaway goal of their own about 6 1/2 minutes later to tie the game at 1-1.

Thoman scored again with 18:42 remaining in the half, off an assist from Kendra Merrill to give the Lady Wildcats a 2-1 lead.

Junior Emma Yohe made it 3-1 about six minutes later, off a feed from Sutton.

Sutton notched her first varsity score with 11:06 remaining on an unassisted goal from 25 yards out to give Athens a 4-1 lead at the half.

Sutton connected again from 25 yards out, this time on a direct kick with 33:45 left in the game, to make it 5-1.

Williamson closed the gap to 5-2 with 14:30 remaining, but Sutton completed her hat trick nearly 6 1/2 minutes later to extend the lead to 6-2.

The Lady Warriors scored in the final minute to provide the final margin.

Williamson had a 13-10 edge in shots-on-goal, and an 8-4 advantage in corner kicks.

Senior Karlee Bartlow registered nine saves in net for Athens.

The Lady Wildcats return to action Thursday at Northeast Bradford.

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