Coach Greg Molnar takes technical for Iroquois teen

By Bailey Kozalla, Kaity Gage, and Stevie Siple, Editor-in-Chief, Design Editor, Staff Writer

Molnar

Coach Greg Molnar

Doing the right thing when the opportunity presents itself is one of the unspoken rules of being a coach. That is exactly what Saegertown boys basketball coach Greg Molnar did on Dec. 22 at Iroquois High School.

With a definite loss in sight for the Panthers, Iroquois basketball coach Brad Breese substituted physically challenged junior Jared Anderson into the game, hoping he could score his first points in his varsity career.

With less than two minutes left on the clock, and the score 71-32, Molnar told Breese to call a timeout. He knew that Anderson’s best chance at scoring was to shoot from the foul line.

Molnar spoke to the official, “If he misses the shot, and we get the rebound, then give me a technical.”

Working according to plan, Saegertown recovered the ball, and the referee blew his whistle signaling a technical foul. Anderson went to the foul line.

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Iroquois player Jared Anderson takes his first of two shots at the line after Saegertown Coach Greg Molnar receives a technical foul.

At this moment, the atmosphere of competition in the gym transitioned to one of emotional camaraderie. After Anderson missed the first free throw, the gym fell silent for his final shot. Once the ball left Anderson’s hand, it banked off the backboard, and swished.

Before the ball even hit the floor, the crowd erupted in cheers that lasted for what seemed like minutes.

Anderson also scored the final shot in the game, taking his total points for the evening to three. 

Coach Molnar described the moment with characteristic humility:  “It was an opportunity to provide a memory and normalcy for a kid who obviously loved basketball but faces challenges no one of us can understand.”

Anderson has been playing the game since he was four years old. Thirteen years later, all of his hard work paid off. “I felt awesome. I’d like to thank your coach and your players being so nice about it. It was a Christmas present for being able to get in and score a basket.”

Anderson plans to attend Edinboro University for either sports medicine or management while also playing on a wheelchair basketball team.

A devoted fan, Charles Curtis expressed his viewpoint in a letter to Principal Tom Baker: “I was very impressed by the way your coach allowed a disabled boy on our Iroquois team to take a shot following a requested technical on Molnar’s part. It was a very emotional moment for me and the people in the gym went wild.”

Curtis has followed local basketball teams for many years, and has never witnessed anything like it. “The young man will remember this moment for the rest of his life. This is what high school sports is all about. Your coach should be recognized for his courtesy.”

Iroquois Assistant Principal Jeannene Willow was also impressed by Saegertown’s sportsmanship. “That was certainly my favorite game of the season this year. I really thought it showed a lot of class on Saegertown’s part. I’m going to remember that game for a long time,” Willow said. 

Experiencing the emotion of the crowd, Willow said, “There weren’t too many dry eyes in the gym that night.”

Karen Anderson, Jared’s mother and biggest fan, was speechless. “I was holding my breath. He’s played wheelchair basketball before. That’s been basically all he could do. He managed last year, and I convinced him to play this year.”

Mrs. Anderson has been anticipating his first moments of playing, “When they put him in finally, it was the greatest thing I have ever seen. He works hard at everything he does.”

She described her emotions while watching her son: “When I saw him out on the floor, I wanted to cry and I wanted to scream and I wanted to cheer all at the same time.”

Mrs. Anderson expressed her gratitude to Saegertown as a whole. “I thank the coach, I thank the fans, and I thank the players. I appreciate your school and how they reacted. The sportsmanship they showed means so much.”

(This story was originally published in the Feb. 14 issue of The Panther Press.)

 

SHS website undergoes revitalization

by Laura Monico, social media editor

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The SHS website has experienced many positive changes as of late under the direction of Mr. George Nahay.

When was the last time you visited the Saegertown High School website? Were you even aware that there is one? Many students and staff of Saegertown High School had stopped visiting the school’s website due to its lack of updated content; however, this is no longer an issue. Technology Education teacher Mr. George Nahay and his multimedia class have taken on the task of revitalizing the school’s home webpage. Mr. Nahay and his students were approached by Principal Tom Baker with the proposition of rejuvenating the site, and they agreed that they were the right people for the job.

Before the update of the website could begin, Mr. Nahay needed to have permission to control the website from the district. This process took some time because teachers are not usually allowed to have editing capabilities of the school’s website, but this allowed Mr. Nahay and his students to learn the skills they needed in order to improve the site. “While our role for the website was being determined, we began learning about photography and other multimedia projects. Once I was given editing rights to the website, we began as a class to compile a list of changes that we felt should be made to improve the school website,” Mr. Nahay wrote.

The class has plans to make numerous improvements that include adding photos, updating the appearance, adding student and teacher resources, and a quick links sidebar.

The multimedia students have been split into two teams, photo and video, in order to make the changes efficiently. The photo team’s focus is to capture events from around the school to keep the website up to date and interesting to the viewers’ eye. In charge of the photo team are seniors Hannah Myers and Cheyenne Mast. Mast said, “I think our goal is to make it look nice so people will actually go to it and enjoy using it. I remember it used to be nice and now it’s boring and dull so we are improving it.”

Working alongside the photo team is the video team headed by senior Bailey Kozalla. Kozalla has been working with her classmates to create highlight videos around five minutes in length that will air weekly on loop on both the website and the televisions located throughout the school. The TVs will not have volume during the school day, so the videos will have subtitles. “The highlight videos will focus on all events that have occurred in the past week at SHS along with a schedule of upcoming events for students to participate in,” Mr. Nahay said. Senior Erika Calwell is looking forward to viewing this new project. Caldwell said, “I think it is a good way to keep the students informed about school activities and I think it will be beneficial in creating more school spirit. I am excited to watch what the multimedia class creates.” Kozalla is also excited for this new project and the effect it will have on the school.  “I think it will make our school day more entertaining,” Kozalla said.

The first video was posted to YouTube on Jan. 16 and the second video was posted the following week on Jan. 22; however, they were not linked to the website or displayed on the TVs. Eventually the TVs will be linked to YouTube and they will continuously loop the video. The videos that have already been posted were rough drafts. The class is waiting to link the televisions until they feel that the videos are more professional.

Principal Baker is glad that the televisions will be up and running on a consistent basis. “We have these televisions and we do not use them, so why don’t we use them,” Mr. Baker said. He is eager to see the first video. “I can’t wait to see the first video that we can play on them,” he said.

The multimedia class hopes that the updated website will be useful to the SHS community. Mr. Nahay wrote, “Our goal for the website is to become an online hub which will contain useful information, relevant updates, and some highlights of the great things happening at SHS.”

To keep up to date on all that is happening at SHS check out the newly renovated  website: https://sites.google.com/a/penncrest.org/shs/

If you find any mistakes or have any suggestions regarding the website you can email George Nahay at gnayhay@penncrest.org