Golden Eagles fall to Juniata, finish season 9-3

Tyrone bids farewell to its seniors, turns attention to next season

Gary Weaver was not able to find much running room.

All good things must come to an end.

The 2015 Golden Eagles’ campaign came to an end on Saturday with a 26-8 loss against the Indians of Juniata. Tyrone finished the season with a record of 9-3 and fall one game short of having an opportunity to defend their District Championship from last season.

Juniata’s defense was surprisingly dominant as Tyrone struggled to move the ball nearly the entire game. Their only score came in the 4th quarter on an 80 yard touchdown pass from Drew Hunter to Cullen Raftery.

The lessons I learned playing football are endless. All my coaches and the game itself taught me to succeed, fail and most of all be a man

— Senior Ricky Reader

The ground game told the story for Saturday night’s loss, as the Indians racked up 197 yards and two touchdowns. The Golden Eagles were shell shocked, as their rushing attack was limited to a dismal -29 yards. The Eagles were also forced to punt the ball seven times and turned the ball over twice on downs. A stark contrast for a offense that averaged 33 points per game on the season.

While disappointed in the outcome of the game, Tyrone’s head coach Jason Wilson was upbeat about the season in general.

“It was an interesting season to say the least,” said Wilson immediately following the loss. “We came a long way from the beginning of the season, regardless of what the scoreboard says. I can only hope and trust that the seniors on this team took away as much from the experience of playing this wonderful sport as they gave me.”

Quarterback Drew Hunter’s season will undoubtedly be recognized as one of the greatest in school history.

Hunter tossed for 2,090 yards and 23 touchdown passes to only six interceptions. He became only the second quarterback in school history to eclipse 2,000 yards and 20 touchdowns in a season, and is the only quarterback to do so with less than ten total turnovers. Hunter also added three touchdowns on the ground giving him 26 total on the year.

“Playing Tyrone Football in junior high and high school has given me memories and friendships that I’ll cherish forever. Tradition never graduates and I’ll always live by #5 on our “How to Win” chart, Team Toughness Tyrone,” said Hunter after his final game as a Golden Eagle.

The receiving duo of Cullen Raftery and Parker Mitchell ended up being the best statistical duo in school history for one season.

Mitchell caught 33 passes for 664 yards and 10 touchdowns while Raftery reeled in 36 balls for 913 yards and 10 scores. Mitchell also added a rushing and punt return touchdown and will be a player to watch in his remaining two seasons for the Golden Eagles.

“Playing football shaped me into who I am today. The lessons I learned from the coaches and from playing have showed me the ropes of life and gave me direction. That’s a gift I could never repay,” said Raftery as he reflected after the game.

Junior tailback Gary Weaver powered the Tyrone offense along with 1,519 yards on 244 carries and 20 rushing touchdowns.

Weaver led the team in all purpose yards with 1,609 yards and 22 total scores. Weaver will return next season and lead the way for the class of 2017.

The Tyrone defense had 25 total takeaways, 13 interceptions and 12 fumble recoveries. Mitchell and Weaver tied for the team lead with four interceptions and Raftery had three, giving him eight total in his career.

“The lessons I learned playing football are endless. All my coaches and the game itself taught me to succeed, fail and most of all be a man,” said defensive end Ricky Reader following the loss.

Being out there with my friends and competing, I’ll never have that feeling again. I’m thankful for every moment of it

— Senior Nick Bonsell

Reader, a senior, led the team with 13 tackles for loss and four quarterback sacks. Colby Pannebaker and John Chronister added three sacks a piece, giving the team 14 total on the year.

“There’s no other experience like it; playing under those Friday night lights,” said Senior lineman Nick Bonsell, “Being out there with my friends and competing, I’ll never have that feeling again. I’m thankful for every moment of it.”

Although the 2015-16 season has come to an end the and the playing careers of eleven seniors are now over, the experience they gained and pride they brought to Tyrone High will last forever. And this reporter can honestly say that I was proud to call many of them my friends.



Juniata: 7 9 3 7 – 26

Tyrone: 0 0 0 8 – 8

First quarter

J-Swartz 7 run (Burns kick), 6:48.

Second quarter

J-Page 1 run (Burns kick), 4:44.

J-Parsons sacks Hunter in end zone for safety, 4:19.

Third quarter

J-Burns 21 field goal, 6:26.

Fourth quarter

T-Raftery 80 pass from Hunter (Mitchell from Hunter), 11:45.

J-Swartz 14 run (Burns kick), 4:17.



Juniata-Swartz 18-52, Hart 14-94, Page 8-49, Clark 2-2.

Tyrone-Weaver 8-12, Hunter 9-(-39), Loose 1-(-2).


Juniata-Clark 8-18-1-162.

Tyrone-Hunter 9-29-0-173.


Juniata-Hart 1-20, Zendt 2-73, Page 1-(-6), Mummah 1-23, Swartz 3-52.

Tyrone-Lewis 1-3, Mitchell 3-29, Raftery 4-131, Weaver 1-10.




First downs Juniata: 12, Tyrone: 6

Rushes-yards Juniata: 42-197, Tyrone: 18-(-29)

Passing (comp.-att.-int.) Juniata: 8-18-1, Tyrone: 9-29-0

Yards passing: Juniata: 162, Tyrone: 173

Total yards: Juniata: 359, Tyrone: 144

Fumbles-lost: Juniata: 0-2 Tyrone: 0-0

Penalties-yards: Juniata: 7-63 Tyrone: 9-73

Punts-avg: Juniata, 5-25.0 Tyrone: 7-33.6