New era dawns at Franklin Regional

Wednesday, August 18, 2021 | 6:01 AM

It’s a fresh start for the Franklin Regional football team.

New is the popular word around the program.

Lance Getsy replaced legendary coach Greg Botta, who retired after 27 years. Getsy brought in seven new assistant coaches.

A new defensive scheme is being implemented, and there are numerous new players looking to earn jobs.

And while some would be cautiously optimistic about the challenge ahead, Getsy is eager to tackle it head on.

Getsy spent two seasons as coach at Charleroi before coming back to Franklin Regional to serve as Botta’s top assistant last fall.

“I love the passion of the players,” Getsy said. “They’ve bought in to what we’re doing, and they know what it takes to be successful. We’re becoming a family. All we need now is experience.”

Franklin Regional pretty much graduated all of its skill players.

Getsy is working with three players trying to win the quarterback spot, replacing Trevor Brncic. They are the Donnelly brothers — Logan and Connor — and Roman Sarnic.

“I’m looking for a guy that’s a leader and understands what every player on offense is doing and a good understanding what the defenses are doing,” Getsy said. “It’s a good battle, and I’m eager to see how things play out.”

The Bewszka brothers — Tyler and Zach — are expected to carry the load in the running game, replacing Brandon Zanotto and Colton Johns, who graduated.

The receiving corps also took a hit. Gone are Mario Sarnic, Jeffrey Downs and Luke Reppermund. Getsy is excited to see if Caden Smith, Maddox Morrison and Jared Ribar are set to step up.

“I want to run a balanced offense,” Getsy said. “We’re running the same offense that we ran last season with a few twists.”

The strength of the Panthers in Getsy’s eyes will be the offensive and defensive lines.

The line will be anchored by senior guard Josh Pelusi, tackle Christo Marion and tackle Brandon Gaur. Those three also will lead the defensive line with Gaur and Pelusi at tackle and Marion at nose.

The Panthers used a three front defense and switched to a four front during the season.

This year, the Panthers will start with a 5-2 base and may switch to a 4-3 if needed.

“The defensive fronts will be similar,” Getsy said. “The differences will be what we do against opponents’ formations and how we attack them.”

Smith returns to anchor the secondary as a strong safety, and Garrett Deller returns at linebacker.

Getsy expects Deller to have a big season.

The Panthers (4-3, 2-3) play in one of the toughest Class 5A (Big East) conferences in the WPIAL and PIAA. The conference features Penn-Trafford, Gateway, Woodland Hills, Latrobe and Connellsville.

The Panthers have five nonconference games before their first conference game.

They open the season Aug. 27 at home against Plum.

Franklin Regional

Coach: Lance Getsy

2020 record: 4-3, 2-3 in Class 5A Big East Conference

All-time record: 295-258-12


Date, Opponent, Time

8.27 Plum, 7

9.3 at Kiski Area, 7

9.10 at Hempfield, 7

9.17 Fox Chapel, 7

9.24 Bethel Park, 7

10.1 at Connellsville*, 7

10.8 Woodland Hills*, 7

10.15 at Latrobe*, 7

10.22 at Penn-Trafford*, 7:30

10.29 Gateway*, 7

*Conference game


Passing: Trevor Brncic

74-129, 1,014 yards, 13 TDs

Receiving: Mario Sarnic

32-388, 2 TDs

Rushing: Brandon Zanotto

65-337, 3 TDs


• Former coach Greg Botta led Franklin Regional to WPIAL and PIAA Class AAA titles in 2005.

• Franklin Regional was known as Franklin Township from 1921-1940.

• The 2020 Panthers missed the WPIAL playoffs for the first time since 2003.

• Franklin Regional’s WPIAL playoff record is 20-19. The Panthers reached the championship game in 1995, losing to Belle Vernon (22-6), and in 2005, defeating Thomas Jefferson (31-14).


No., Name, Pos., Ht./Wt., Cl.

2, Cole Brinker, QB/WR/S, 5-7/124, So.

3, Garrett Deller, HB/MLB, 5-9/201, Sr.

4, Maddox Morrison, WR/CB, 5-10/144, Sr.

5, Tyler Bewszka, RB/OLB, 5-8/164, Sr.

6, Roman Sarnic, QB/DB, 6-0/175, Jr.

7, Jared Ribar, WR/CB, 5-8/149, Sr.

8, Connor Donnelly, QB/DB, 6-2/183, Sr.

9, Zach Bewszka, WR/LB, 5-7/151, Jr.

10, Chase Lemke, QB/DB, 5-7/143, Fr.

11, Grant Goulding, RB/WR, 5-7/127, So.

12, Logan Donnelly, QB/DB, 6-0/189, Jr.

13, Nico Sarnic, WR/DB, 5-5/104, Fr.

15, Nolan Cowart, WR/DB, 6-2/173, So.

16, Ayden Hudock, WR/RB/OLB, 6-1/176, So.

17, Jake Gentile, RB/DE/OLB, 5-9/126, So.

18, Austin Kerns, QB/LB, 5-10/158, Fr.

19, Roman Gambardella, WR/DB, 5-9/155, JR.

20, Ian Shook, HB/DB, 5-10/177, So.

21, Kyle Dupill, RB/LB, Fr.

22, Heath Sliva, WR/DB, 5-9/145, Fr.

24, Jude Gentile, RB/LB, 5-4/133, Fr.

26, Caden Smith, WR/FS, 6-4/185, Sr.

28, Jake Weir, HB/DE, Fr.

33, Jamal Van Irvin, WR/S, 5-7/136, So.

34, Noah Walker, WR/DB/K, Fr.

35, Caleb Kane, WR/DB, 5-2/121, Fr.

36, Logan Mocharko, WR/DB, 5-3/103, Fr.

39, Macallister Bresnahan, HB/LB, Fr.

40, Gino Piraino, WR/DB, 5-10/137, So.

42, Gunner Perez, WR, 5-10/152, So.

44, Brett Fricke, RB/OLB, 5-8/170, Sr.

45, Ethan Hoff, WR/DB, 5-6/123, Fr.

46, Tyler Vollero, DL, 5-7/160, So.

47, Emerson Van Soest, WR/DB, 5-6/108, Fr.

48, Nate Chiarizio, TE/DE, 6-3/240, Jr.

49, Najji Velasquez, WR/DE, 5-8/150, So.

50, Brandon Gaur, G/T/DT, 5-11/210, Sr.

51, Christo Marion, T/OLB/DE, 6-2/226, Sr.

52, John Ciecierski, C, 5-11/251, So.

54, Andrew Devola, OL/DL, 5-11/212, Fr.

55, Eric Hutsko, DT, 5-9/221, Jr.

57, Owen Sinclair, TE/DE, 6-0/211, So.

58, Emmanuel Pepala, OL/DL, 5-6/222, Fr.

60, Matthew Pampalone, OL/DE, 5-9/210, So.

62, Max Leven, OL/TE/DL, 6-8/289, Jr.

64, Andrew Golda, OL/DL, 5-8/227, Jr.

66, Josh Pelusi, G/DT, 6-1/298, Sr.

67, Joey Eveges, OL/DL, So.

70, Brent Hickey, OL/DL, 5-9/191, Fr.

71, Joe Purdue, C/MLB, 5-10/197, Sr.

73, Andy Baldwin, T/DE, 6-2/250, Sr.

76, Nicholas Petrucci, TE/OLB, 6-4/255, Jr.

77, Andrew Nesler, OL/DL, 6-2/275, Jr.

78, William Montgomery, OL/DL, 6-2/165, Fr.

81, David Soisson, WR/DB, 5-11/145, Jr.

83, Nick Purdue, RB/LB, 5-9/135, So.

85, Cole Vollero, WR/DB, 5-5/111, So.

86, Jack Silvis, WR/DB, Fr.

88, Noah Rogers, WR/CB, 5-8/134, So.

99, Dominic Reinhardt, HB/LB, 5-7/157, Fr.

Antonio Stabile, HB/LB, 5-11/225, Jr.

Sam Atkinson, OL/DL, So.

Paul Schofield is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Paul by email at or via Twitter .


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