4 inducted into Carson High Football Hall of Fame

Nothing has really changed over the years. No matter if it was Tony Savenelli more than 40 years ago or Jim Franz now.

Savanelli was a dedicated educator in his day. Franz is a dedicated educator today. That's a major reason why the two will be inducted into the Carson High Football Hall of Fame.

They will be joined in this year's class by two players who played a major role in two of the Senators' biggest success stories in football over the past 30 years in Jim Tatro and Vince Sciarotta. The four will be honored during the CHS Football Hall of Fame Dinner to be held at 6 p.m. Saturday at Adele's.

Savenelli, who passed away in 2002, will join the head coach he served with in Ed Jesse in the CHS Hall of Fame. Savenelli was the line coach for Jesse's Carson football team that won the 1964 state title.

Savenelli served as an educator for 36 years. "He was a teacher not just a coach," said his widow, Kay Savenelli.

From 1961-1970, Savenelli served as Carson's varsity line coach. Before coming to Carson, he also coached at Fallon from 1955-1960 where he served as junior varsity head coach and varsity line coach.

After serving in the Army from 1944-1946, Savenelli went on to play college football and semi-pro football with Indiana Central College and the LaTrobe Zimbos in the late 1940s and early 1950s.

"He would be very proud that all of his hard work and dedication has been recognized," Kay said. "He was very, very dedicated.

"He loved football whether it was coaching it or playing it or watching it on TV or going to a game. That was a big, big part of his life. He would bring home his playbook at night and see what he could do better."

Jim Franz has been a part of the Carson football program as a player and coach for 26 years, coaching for 20. He's serving as the line coach this year under Blair Roman, the fourth head coach he's served under at Carson. Franz also coached for Paul Croghan, Bob Bateman and Shane Quilling.

"I've spent more than half of my life being involved in Carson High football," Franz said. "It's nice to be recognized, but I've enjoyed it."

"It hasn't always been successful, but it's not why you do it, either," Franz also said, commenting that the teaching is more important than the wins and losses.

"In my opinior I don't think there's anyone that deserves it more than Jim," said Roman about the honor. "He's seen all the highs and lows of Carson High football for 20 years.

"He's been a positive influence on a lot of kids for 20 years. He's the rock of Carson football."

Franz, a 1981 CHS graduate, was a two-year starter and the top lineman for the Senators. He also played baseball and was on the wrestling team for one year.

Among those he played with in baseball were Matt Williams and Charley Kerfeld, who both went on to Major League careers. Franz played on the 1979 state title team and the 1981 team that finished as state runner-up.

Tatro, a 1978 CHS graduate, was the leader of the 1977 team that beat a Joe Sellers-coached Wooster team. It was the last time Carson would beat Wooster until 2001.

"That was the highlight of the season no question," Tatro said. "In a year when they were tough, too."

Tatro was an all-state linebacker and the Northern 3A Lineman of the Year while he was at CHS. He also competed in track at Carson and went on to play one year of football at the University of Nevada.

"I thought it was pretty cool when Blair called me," said Tatro, who now has his own insurance agency, Jim Tatro Insurance, in South Reno. When asked if he was honored, Tatro said, "Obviously. No question."

Sciarotta, who is now a small business owner in Carson, was the co-captain on the 1995 team under Bateman that finished the regular season 8-1. He was a two-way starter, playing on the offensive and defensive lines and was an all-league guard.

"We just had a really solid group of guys that all bought into waht the coaches were telling us," said Sciarott, a 1996 Carson High graduate. "We just believed in ourselves and gave it everything we had."

Sciarotta gave much of the credit to the success of the 1995 team to Bateman and his staff. "The choices they made were a benefit to all of us," Sciarotta said.

Cost for the dinner, which also features a silent auction, is $30. Tickets will be available at the event or by calling Mike Plattsmier, 742-4850.

Roman said Charlie Abowd's willingness to host the dinner each year is a major reason why the event can continue to take place. "He's generosity is tremendous," Roman said.

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