7-on-7 tournament a success for Franklin Regional
TribLIVE Sports Videos
Franklin Regional football coach Greg Botta knows about the benefits of playing 7-on-7 tournaments.
He's familiar with some of the pitfalls, too.
“You learn about other teams' offenses and defenses, different schemes — there's a lot you gain from it,” Botta said. “I'm a big advocate of it. But in all my years of coaching, I've lost some people during 7-on-7s for the year, and that's something you don't want to have happen to you.
“You can't fear it, either. But you just don't want to (play 7-on-7s) a lot because your (injury) chances will increase the more you do it.”
With those pros and cons in mind, Botta and Franklin Regional hosted the third annual Westmoreland County Coaches Association 7-on-7 tournament last week.
Afterward, Botta was happy to report that the tournament went off “without a hitch,” praising special teams coach Larry Sellitto for his work coordinating it.
“It was a lot of work,” Botta said. “Everything (Sellitto) does, he does extremely well. It went without a hitch today. He did a great job.”
The tournament featured 12 teams from across Westmoreland County: Franklin Regional, Greensburg Central Catholic, Greensburg Salem, Hempfield, Jeannette, Kiski Area, Mt. Pleasant, Norwin, Penn-Trafford, Southmoreland, Valley and Yough.
The teams were broken down into pools of six, with each squad playing the other five in round-robin play. Winners of each pool advanced to the championship game.
Franklin Regional played in a pool with Hempfield, Mt. Pleasant, Norwin, Southmoreland and Yough. The Panthers finished 2-3 in their round-robin games, but Botta said he was focused more on giving repetitions to younger players.
“Everybody likes to win, but for me, it was about trying to get a lot of kids who were question marks at the varsity level reps,” Botta said. “The last couple of games, we did that. We gave kids who are sophomores and juniors who don't usually get a lot of playing time a lot of reps, and a lot of guys surprised me.
“That's what you're looking for — to give your guys experience out here, and if you win along the way, that's fine.”
Because quarterback Nico Lodovico graduated after last season, Franklin Regional will break in a new starter at the position in 2013. Rising senior Charan Singh — a wide receiver last season — played most of the games at quarterback last week, but rising senior Stefano Giacchino also got some work in.
But Botta's eyes were also trained on the other skill position players on offense, as well as the defensive players.
“We have a lot of kids at wide receiver trying to get in the mix of five or six receivers,” he said. “The linebackers and the safeties, we try to get kids reps so we can see if they can help us out. The first game, (players are) sucking air, so you have to have kids ready to back up and ready to play.”
Last week's WCCA tournament was Franklin Regional's fourth of the summer. While Botta was pleased with the Panthers' progress throughout the summer, he isn't sure how much impact it will have when training camp officially begins Aug. 12.
“My concern is we teach what we need to do,” he said. “7-on-7 games are great, but it doesn't indicate what kind of football team you have.”
Doug Gulasy is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-388-5830, via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or via Twitter @dgulasy_Trib.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Valley, Freeport provide special moment for Clarke in regular-season finale
- Kittanning routs Ford City in rivalry’s final game
- No. 4 Highlands wraps up perfect regular season
- WPIAL football playoff clinchings
- West Shamokin dominates Deer Lakes
- Murray carries Steel Valley over South Allegheny, into WPIAL playoffs
- East Allegheny caps season with win
- Hempfield takes down Fox Chapel
- Jeannette rolls past rival Greensburg Central Catholic
- Mt. Pleasant eliminates Southmoreland, earns home playoff game
- Kittanning-Ford City notebook: Late TD holds special meaning