Articles by Jonathan Cortez

Ellwood City Borough Council June Meeting Brief [Updated at noon]

The following is a brief summary of the Ellwood City Borough Council June meeting held on June 20. Announcements Parking on Lawrence Avenue will be closed from Fourth to Eighth Street beginning at 2 p.m. for hosing.* Borough Manager Bob Villella reminded residents to not sweep grass clippings into the storm catchings, as that clogs the system. There will be a public hearing on a proposed zoning ordinance on June 27 at 5 p.m. “The zoning won’t be perfect, but we’re taking calculated, proven steps in developing our downtown,” council member David DeCaria said. The borough clean-up day will be…


Council to Rescind Police Body Armor Policy

Council will rescind the Body Armor Policy at its regular meeting on Monday. This decision comes seven months after the previous council unanimously re-affirmed the body armor policy. When Donald Clyde was mayor (2006-2009), he initiated a policy allowing officers to sign a release form allowing them to not wear armor and contradicting council’s body armor policy. According to Borough Solicitor Ed Leymarie, the police union filed a grievance against the body armor policy, and the court upheld Clyde’s policy. Thus, council will be rescinding the motion. In response to a question from visitor Dave McQuade, Leymarie said the court…


Relay for Life 2016: Paint Your World Purple

The Ellwood City Relay for Life 2016 will honor cancer survivors with a “Paint Your World Purple” theme. This year’s Relay for Life will run Saturday from noon to midnight, rain or shine. Twelve teams are registered to walk around the track and participate in events that include a balloon release, exercise demonstration, basket auction and world survivor lap. “Purple is the symbol of hope and courage for cancer survivors,” Jackie Kline, the Relay for Life publicity chairperson, said. “Cancer is no longer a death sentence.” Kline is a 10 year, going on 11 year, survivor of breast cancer. The…


Ellwood, Riverside Both Crush PIAA Opener

The Ellwood City softball team won the first round of the PIAA playoffs in a 10-0 landslide against Bald Eagle. On Friday, the Lady Wolverines claimed the WPIAL title 10-0 in a five-inning mercy rule, and the team repeated that performance three days later. Arianna Garroway, Camille Maine and Reagan Mittler all hit double RBIs. On the plate, Skyla Greco pitched another shutout and now has 162 strikeouts in 125 innings this season. Ellwood City will play Moniteau on Thursday, June 9 at Slippery Rock University at 1 p.m. The last two times Ellwood advanced to the PIAA playoffs in…


Police: Wampum Resident Charged with Aggravated Assault after Intentionally Running over Man with a Truck

A Wampum resident assaulted a Perry Township man by running him over with a truck, resulting in the victim’s hospitalization under critical care. According to the criminal complaint,Travis Edward Olinger, 28, is charged with aggravated assault against the victim, Ronald H. Miller. On June 5 at approximately 4:30, officers were dispatched to the Ellwood City Hospital for an assault call. Officers spoke with a witness, the Miller’s nephew. The nephew said that he and his uncle were traveling east on Portersville Road from Ellwood to Ellport when a blue Chevy truck followed them, flashing its high beams. Miller pulled over…


Two Home Runs and a Mercy Rule: Ellwood Claims WPIAL Title and Prepares for PIAA Playoffs

Mercy rule. Shut out. Grand slam. These are all terms a great softball team experiences but usually not at the WPIAL championships. The undefeated Lady Wolverines only needed four and a half innings to defeat South Park 10-0 and claim the Class AA WPIAL title. The game on Friday at California University was originally scheduled for Thursday but delayed due to rain. Meanwhile, Ellwood’s three seniors, Allie McKelvey, Kayla Murin and Mallory Swogger, went through Lincoln’s commencement on Thursday anticipating the next day’s game. Ellwood suffered a setback in the first inning when McKelvey sprained her ankle after beating out…


Opinion: Two Ellwood Teams Know What It Requires to Succeed

This spring I’ve had the pleasure to be a journalist in a town with two WIAL championship teams: Riverside baseball and Ellwood softball. In fact, since 2001, these two schools have collected an impressive amount of combined titles* through their four varsity ball teams. I’m not a sports fan to any extent. I’ve watched one professional sports game on television, but even I can’t be unaffected by the excitement of the season, and I hope to be writing articles for each team in the coming days. The degree of success the teams have had is astounding. Riverside won shut outs…


WPIAL Preview: Undefeated Lady Wolverines Preparing for South Park

The Ellwood City girl’s softball team is one game away from a WPIAL title, but if they’re nervous, they aren’t showing it. At a practice on Friday, the girls displayed their usual mix of enthusiasm and dedication combined with a devoted sense of fun. For tomorrow’s game against South Park at California University, the Lady Wolverines are using the same approach they have all season: taking it one game at a time and trying to get better every day. From the first game to the semi-finals, Ellwood remains undefeated with a record of 19-0. They defeated Neshannock 11-4 in the…


Opinion: Advice on Reducing College Costs for Future College Students

Congratulations to Ellwood, Riverside and other local seniors! One chapter of your life is over and another is beginning or insert your own generic motivational statement. A generalized amount of you will be attending a four-year accredited institute of higher education. Good for you! Numerous graphs that bedazzle Lincoln High School halls indicate people with bachelor’s degrees earn more than people with only high school diplomas. Here’s a bar graph and a line graph you can look at right now. Unfortunately, college is a costly proposition. From 1978 to 2008, the cost of tuition has increased at a much higher…


Ellwood’s Petrak and Lott Advance to Track States

The 300 meter hurdles and 1600 meter run are two of the most physically taxing events in track and field. The hurdles not only requires one to sprint an extended distance, but navigate hurdles as well. The 1600 (approximately one mile) requires speed, endurance and a considerable amount of strategy to pace the four laps and outlast the competition. Ellwood has an athlete advancing in each event. Junior Taylor Petrak placed fourth at the Class AA WPIAL finals in the girls 300 hurdles with a time of 47.35 seconds and junior Billy Lott placed seventh in the boys 1600 with…