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Alumni Update - Andrew Garcia (Chatham University)

Written by Drew Karpen on .

PITTSBURGH, Pa. – Carnegie Mellon University assistant men's basketball coachGarcia Chatham Andrew Garcia has been appointed the first head men's basketball coach in Chatham University history. Garcia served as the Tartans' assistant coach for three years.

In June, Chatham announced it will now sponsor men's sports as part of the university's three-phrase transformation to a co-educational institution. The Cougars will begin intercollegiate competition during the 2015-2016 academic year.

"I am thrilled at the opportunity to become the first head coach at Chatham University," Garcia said. "As a Pittsburgh native, staying in the city is, and always will be, very important to me. I am looking forward to the challenge of building the men's basketball program at Chatham from the ground up."

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Alumni Update - Vince Colarusso (Waynesburg)

Written by Drew Karpen on .

GREENVILLE, Pa. - The Presidents' Athletic Conference (PAC) released its annual preseason men's soccer coaches' poll Tuesday. Waynesburg was picked to finish sixth out of the nine conference programs.

The Yellow Jackets received 33 total points from the coaches, after finishing fifth in the PAC standings in 2013 with a 3-3-2 conference record (10-4-3 overall). Preseason favorite and defending conference champion Thomas More College garnered 78 total points and seven first-place votes. Washington & Jefferson College received the other two first-place votes, and was given the second spot with 70 points. Geneva College (60), Grove City College (59) and Westminster College (39) were picked to finish in third, fourth and fifth place, respectively.

On the same day the poll was released, the conference also unveiled its 60th anniversary team, which celebrates the PAC's organization in 1955.

Vince Colarusso, a Hempfield graduate, was a four-time second-team All-PAC selection for the Yellow Jackets. He is Waynesburg's only four-time all-conference pick.

 

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Alumni Updates - Eric Hauser (Thiel)

Written by Drew Karpen on .

GREENVILLE, Pa. – Six former Tomcats were named to the Presidents' Athletic Conference (PAC) 60th anniversary men's soccer team Tuesday.

Representing Thiel on the 60th anniversary men's soccer team were: Rory Duncan, Eric Hauser, Evan Knox, Jeremy Rotzell, Chad Swisher and Nikola Vasilev.

Hauser, a Mt. Pleasant graduate, was a talented defender for the Tomcats. He was also a factor on the offensive side of the ball, posting 19 points and scoring eight goals during his career. He earned a pair of All-PAC selections, being named to the second team as a freshman (2001) and to the honorable mention team as a senior (2004).

 

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Alumni Update - Mindy Hall (Waynesburg)

Written by Drew Karpen on .

GREENVILLE, Pa. – The Presidents' Athletic Conference (PAC) released its annual preseason women's tennis poll, which was voted upon by the league's head coaches, on Monday. Waynesburg University was picked to place fourth out of the nine conference programs.

The Yellow Jackets, which posted a fourth-place PAC record of 6-3 in 2013 (11-4 overall), garnered 48 total points from the coaches. Last year's conference champions from Westminster and perennial league power house Grove City tied for top honors in the poll with 75 points each. The two teams split the nine first-place votes, with the Titans taking five of them, and GCC claiming the other four. Saint Vincent College was predicted to take the number-three slot (63 points).

On the same day that the poll was released, the conference also unveiled its 60th anniversary team, which celebrates the PAC's organization in 1955.

Mindy Hall, a Mt. Pleasant graduate, is one of only two Waynesburg women to claim an individual PAC title, which she won in 2003 at number-two singles. She added a pair of second-team All-PAC laurels while playing number-one singles and number-one doubles in 2005.

 

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Girls Tennis: 2014 East Season Preview

Written by Justin Criado on .

If the Kluska sisters, Michaela and Alyvia, have anything to do with it, Greensburg Central Catholic won't have to wait another 15 years to raise the WPIAL Class AA crown.

The Centurions won the title for the first time since 1999 last year in large part because of the sisters.

The sophomore sisters qualified for the PIAA tournament.

Looking to stop GCC's repeat bid will be Ellis School. The Tigers finished fourth in the WPIAL Class AA after falling to Quaker Valley in the consolation match. The loss placed Ellis on the outside looking in regarding the PIAA tournament for the second season.

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Girls Tennis: 2014 East Players to Watch

Written by Justin Criado on .

Here are some East players to keep an eye on during the 2014 girls tennis season.

Natalia Perry, Franklin Regional, Jr.
Madison DeBone, Hempfield, Sr.
Maura Sackett, Hempfield, Soph.
Abby Herman, Gateway, Fr.
Aishwarya Raj, Gateway, Jr.

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Brad Everett's East High School Football Notebook (Aug. 28, 2014)

Written by Brad Everett on .

Here's this week's edition of Brad Everett's East High School Football Notebook.

"When Burrell takes the field Friday to play its season opener at arch-rival Valley, memories of a deceased teammate will be on their minds.

A visual remembrance will be there, too.

Burrell players will wear decals on their helmets with the initials "NC" this season to honor Noah Cornuet, a 16-year-old sophomore who collapsed and died at practice Aug. 6.

The tribute is one of several that will be seen at Burrell games this fall. Fourth-year coach Kevin Horwatt said he and his staff have left it up to the players as to how to honor Cornuet, adding that he's not even sure yet as to what all will take place."

 

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Football: Penn-Trafford grad has key role at Seton Hill

Written by Joe Koch on .

Joe Koch profiles Penn-Trafford grad Tyler Zimmer, who now plays football at Seton Hill.

"Tyler Zimmer has received plenty of accolades since he arrived on the Seton Hill University campus after transferring from Duquesne University.

A Penn-Trafford High School graduate, he earned All-Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference-West first team honors in 2013 and was named to the All-West Virginia Intercollegiate Athletic Conference first team in 2012 in the school's final year in the West Virginia-based conference.

He has also earned some academic accolades from various organizations. Those honors are nice, but this soft-spoken senior is focused on putting some W's in the win column after two seasons that have yielded just one victory.

"We want to improve in all aspects of the game, offense, defense and special teams," he said. "It's never been about personal accomplishments for me. I'm ready to win, and the coaching staff and my teammates are, too. We want to improve and get some wins this year.""

 

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Girls Soccer: Penn-Trafford a WPIAL contender

Written by Nicholas Tolomeo on .

Nicholas Tolomeo profiles the Penn-Trafford girls soccer team.

2014 0828 PennTrafford GSoccer(Photo: Senior forward Italia Biondi, a University of Toledo recruit, is one of several talented returnees for Penn-Trafford. Matt Hafley/Post-Gazette)

"With three Division I recruits playing in the midfield and at forward position, the Penn-Trafford High School girls soccer team has the firepower to hang with anyone in the WPIAL.

A few questions remain along the backline but if the Warriors are able to address those, they should be a title contender this year.

Seven starters return from last season, including senior captains Casey Aunkst and Italia Biondi.

Aunkst plays in the midfield and Biondi is a forward. Aunkst committed to Duquesne University and Biondi committed to the University of Toledo. Biondi played her first two seasons at Greensburg Central Catholic before transferring to Penn-Trafford. She is one of the top goal scorers in the WPIAL."

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Football: 2014 East Season Preview

Written by Brad Everett on .

Woodland Hills and Central Catholic met for last year's WPIAL Class AAAA championship and begin this season as the top-two ranked teams in the class. Central Catholic topped Woodland Hills, 27-7, last November, but Woodland Hills appears to have the edge in talent this time around. The top-ranked Wolverines have one of the top running back combos in the state with Miles Sanders and Art Thompkins. Sanders, a junior, has already committed to Penn State. Thompkins, a senior, is a Toledo recruit. Sanders has started since his freshman season and rushed for 1,064 yards and 14 touchdowns last season. Paving the way for Sanders and Thompkins is a veteran offensive line led by Jake Cassidy and Dan Gibson. No. 2 Central Catholic suffered some signficant losses via graduation, but still have a lot of talent on board. Among the team's strength's is a terrific secondary paced by John Petrishen and Damar Hamlin. Pitt is one of more than two dozen schools to offer Petrishen a scholarship, while Hamlin is a highly regarded junior who already has offers from Pitt and Penn State.

Central Catholic is the lone East team in the Northern Eight Conference, but Woodland Hills will have to battle for Southeastern Conference supremacy with nearby rival Penn Hills. The Indians are led by quarterback Bill Kisner, who was second among all WPIAL quarterbacks in rushing last season, as he finished with 1,191 yards.

Penn-Trafford returns seven starters on both sides of the ball and is favored to win the Foothills Conference. A WPIAL semifinalist last season, the Warriors have a strong trio of playmakers with quarterback Brent Laffoon (1,430 yards passing), running back Devin Austin (1,275 yards rushing) and wide receiver Timmy Vecchio (40 catches for 682 yards and 12 touchdowns). Hempfield has holes to fill at running back and quarterback, but the Spartans have one of the WPIAL's best and biggest linemen in Pitt recruit Tony Pilato (6-foot-7, 300 pounds). Kiski Area brings back quarterback Chad Kuhn, who passed for 1,007 yards and 10 touchdowns a season ago.

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Football: 2014 East Players to Watch

Written by staff reports on .

Here are some football players to watch from the East area this season.

James Jackson, Allderdice, Jr., QB – "Twinsanity" made headlines on the hardwood. Now it hits the turf. James is the arm of the Jackson twins, having thrown for 1,677 yards and 12 touchdowns as a sophomore.

Tim Jackson, Allderdice, Jr., WR – This Jackson ends up on the receiving end of many of his brother's passes. Tim averaged 30.6 yards per catch on his way to 1,009 receiving yards last season.

Ryan Sowol, Burrell, Sr., RB – Sowol will be the focal point of the offense for a young Burrell team. Last season, Sowol ran for 1,150 yards and 12 touchdowns.

Eric McAllister, Central Catholic, Sr., C-DL – One of the WPIAL's top linemen, McAllister anchors a pair of lines that are typically among the best in Class AAAA.

Johnny Petrishen, Central Catholic, Sr., WR-DB – A big-time playmaker as a defensive back and returner, Petrishen has more than two dozen scholarship offers, including Pitt.

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Boys Soccer: 2014 East Season Preview

Written by Stephen Catanese on .

Class AAA

Section 3-AAA will feature a couple of the bigger changes in the WPIAL this season.

With perennial section title contender Central Catholic being moved to Section 4-AAA, it would appear that the clear favorite for the title would be Fox Chapel. But incoming is Kiski Area, led by forward Dakota Lange, has to challenge the Foxes. Resurgent Penn Hills, meanwhile, should be able to continue its upward trend.

Over in Section 1-AAA, now without the Cavaliers, the top spot could seemingly go in a number of directions. Norwin was excellent in section play last season, but Penn Trafford and Franklin Regional weren't far behind.

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Boys Soccer: 2014 East Players to Watch

Written by Sports Town on .

Here are some East players to keep an eye on during the 2014 boys soccer season.

Preseason Player of the Year
Abe Kouyate, Obama Academy, Sr., Midfielder/Forward

Zach Bednar, Mount Pleasant, Sr., Forward
Joey Cox, Burrell, Sr., Midfielder
Zachary D'Amico, Mount Pleasant, Sr., Midfielder
Galen Kreutzberger, Penn-Trafford, Sr., Midfielder/Defender
Dakota Lange, Kiski Area, Sr., Forward
Mathieu Lebiere, Winchester Thurston, Sr., Goalkeeper
Jarrod McDowell, Central Catholic, Sr., Midfielder
Jake Roberge, Franklin Regional, Sr., Midfielder
Ever Rodriguez, Allderdice, Jr., Forward
Lucas Rosenblatt, Winchester Thurston, Sr., Midfielder

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Girls Soccer: 2014 East Season Preview

Written by Nicholas Tolomeo on .

Frannie Crouse and Malea Fabean enjoyed two of the best four-year careers in WPIAL soccer history. The dynamic scoring duo led the Centurions to WPIAL and PIAA titles but when Crouse graduated and moved on to Penn State she took with her 208 career goals and when Fabean moved on to Pitt she took with her 117 career assists. Greensburg Central Catholic coach Bryan Cartwright takes over for Ashley Shasko and he will try to rebuild around sophomore forward Bailey Cartwright.

In Class AA, Yough could be a surprise team with senior goalie Leigh Appolonia, junior forward Shawn Zaken and senior midfielder/forward Natalie Luppold returning from a 15-win team a year ago. The Cougars will be challenged in Section 1-AA by Mount Pleasant and Greensburg Salem, a pair of playoff teams from last season.

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Girls Soccer: 2014 East Players to Watch

Written by Sports Town on .

Here are some East players to keep an eye on during the 2014 girls soccer season.

Preseason Player of the Year
Micayla Livingston, Norwin, Jr., Forward

Ashley Amato, Plum, Jr., Midfielder
Leigh Appolonia, Yough, Sr., Goalkeeper
Casey Aunkst, Penn-Trafford, Sr., Midfielder
Athena Biondi, Penn-Trafford, Soph., Defender/Midfielder
Italia Biondi, Penn-Trafford, Sr., Forward/Midfielder
Chelsea Burkhart, Hempfield, Sr., Midfielder/Forward
Essence Canady, Oakland Catholic, Soph., Midfielder
Bailey Cartwright, Greensburg C.C., Soph., Forward
Maggie Hilton, Gateway, Sr., Forward/Midfielder
Stephanie Kubus, Latrobe, Sr., Goalkeeper

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Boys Basketball: Gateway coach resigns

Written by Mike White on .

Mike White reports that Gateway boys basketball coach Mitch Adams has resigned.

"Gateway went to the top of the WPIAL basketball mountain under Mitch Adams, but Adams' tenure ended abruptly Sunday amidst the coach facing charges of harassment and making terroristic threats.

Adams, who won the only two WPIAL boys championships in Gateway history, resigned after nine years as coach. He called athletic director Randy Rovesti to inform him of his decision. Adams also sent a text message to Gateway's players.

Adams, 56, was charged by Trafford police last month with harassment and making terroristic threats to a neighbor after an incident near Adams' home. Adams faces a preliminary hearing Sept. 23 before District Judge Helen Kistler.

"He has some health issues, too, and I think that played a factor into him stepping down," Rovesti said. "I'm sure this incident played a role in it, too.""

 

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Boys Cross Country: 2014 East Season Preview

Written by Brittany Goncar on .

Winchester Thurston will look to returning talent to improve upon its medal performance from last year. The Bears took third at WPIALs and went on to tie Avonworth for eighth at the PIAA Class A championships.

Junior Will Loevner will take over Robert Lincoln's spot at as the top runner this season. Lincoln finished 14th at states and 16th at WPIALs. Loevner finished 30th at states and 16th at WPIALs. The Bears will also look to the young talent of sophomore Ben Littman, who finished 12th at the district meet.

In Class AAA, Central Catholic will return top-runner Jeff Van Kooten. Last year the senior finished 15th at states and sixth at the WPIAL championships. As a team, Central Catholic finished seventh in the WPIAL. Each of its top five runners will return, except for Kyle Zenchak.

Kiski Area had two individuals place at the PIAA Class AAA championships last year. Sophomore Eric Kennedy will look to improve on his impressive freshman campaign. Kennedy placed 123rd at the PIAA championships after placing 28th at the WPIAL championships.

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Girls Cross Country: 2014 East Season Preview

Written by Brittany Goncar on .

Riverview's junior Molly Kennedy learned how to be a leader right out of the gate. She was the Raiders' No. 1 runner in every meet last season and doesn't plan to stop now.

Kennedy capped her second season with a fifth-place finish at the WPIAL Class A championships before taking eighth at the PIAA meet.

As a team, the Raiders took seventh at the WPIAL meet behind Vincentian.

Greensburg Central Catholic aims to be on the inside of the top 10 looking out this season after finishing 11th in the WPIAL last year. Senior Cassie Sauter would also like to improve upon her 13th-place finish.

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Boys Cross Country: 2014 East Runners to Watch

Written by Brittany Goncar on .

Here are the returning boys runners from the East coverage area who finished among the top 30 at last year's WPIAL championships.

Jeff Van Kooten, Central Catholic, Sr. – 6th WPIAL Class AAA.
Jake Susalla, Plum, Jr. – 22nd WPIAL Class AAA.
Eric Kennedy, Kiski Area, So. – 28th WPIAL Class AAA.
Liam Connelly, Gateway, Jr. – 30th WPIAL Class AAA.

Ben Littman, Winchester Thurston, So. – 13th WPIAL Class A.
Will Loevner, Winchester Thurston, Jr. -17th WPIAL Class AA.

 

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Girls Cross Country: 2014 East Runners to Watch

Written by Brittany Goncar on .

Here are the returning girls runners from the East coverage area who finished among the top 30 at last year's WPIAL championships.

Megan Aller, Kiski Area, Jr. – 7th WPIAL Class AAA.
Morgan Ansell, Hempfield, Sr. - 11th WPIAL Class AAA.
Bria McMahon, Franklin Regional, Jr. – 17th WPIAL Class AAA.
Kelley Giles, Norwin, So. – 18th WPIAL Class AAA.
Lauren Smeltzer, Kiski Area, Sr. – 19th WPIAL Class AAA.