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Charleroi's Fusina named Centenary's basketball coach

| Saturday, Oct. 5, 2013, 9:01 p.m.

Charleroi native Tim Fusina was recently named the new head men's basketball coach at Centenary College, an NCAA Division III school in Hackettstown, N.J.

For the past five years he had served as the assistant men's basketball coach at Washington and Jefferson College under veteran head coach Glenn Gutierrez.

In 2008-09, Fusina helped the Presidents compile a 20-10 overall record for the only the program's second 20-win season. That year ended with Washington and Jefferson winning the ECAC Division III championship with double-digit victories over Catholic (Washington, D.C.) and Cabrini (Radnor, Pa.) College. The Presidents have enjoyed their most success in the past 65 years during Gutierrez' first seven years, and he credits Fusina for playing a significant role.

“Tim has been very instrumental for us and has done a fabulous job with our recruiting and in all areas of our program,” Gutierrez said. “He comes from a coaching family, has worked very long and hard for this great opportunity. I'm obviously very excited for him.

Fusina also served as the Presidents' men's tennis head coach for two seasons.

He helped the Presidents finish third at the 2010 President's Athletic Conference Championships where Christopher Faulk became just the third W&J player in the past 21 years to win a No. 1 singles title.

Previously, Fusina worked two seasons as the assistant men's basketball coach at Pitt-Greensburg, where he coordinated recruiting and prepared scouting reports, while aiding in game planning and preparation.

He was also an assistant coach from 2003 through 2005 at Penn State-Beaver.

“We are excited to add Coach Fusina to our coaching staff,” Centenary athletic director Billie Jo Blackwell said. “Tim brings a wealth of experience and enthusiasm to the position, and I know he is excited for the challenge of working with our current and future players to elevate Centenary basketball back to the top of the Colonial States Athletic Conference.”

Fusina is a member of the National Association of Collegiate Basketball Coaches. In addition to his collegiate coaching experience, he has also served as an instructor at numerous summer basketball camps.

Centenary's men's basketball team is coming off a 13-13 showing in 2012-13 and 10-8 mark in the Colonial States Athletic Conference. The Cyclones were defeated by eventual league finalist Cabrini in the conference quarterfinals.

“I am excited beyond words to be a part of such a great athletic department and college community,” Fusina said. “I am grateful for this opportunity and look forward to mentoring our student-athletes on and off the court.”

New coaches roam sidelines

There are 27 new football head coaches roaming the sidelines this fall in the WPIAL and one new leader in the City League.

Local new football head coaches include California's Bo Teets, Carmichaels' Ryan Krull, Geibel's Pete Nace and McKeesport's George Smith.

Smith returned to McKeesport last winter after coaching the Tigers for 28 years through 2009. He won 197 games with WPIAL and PIAA Quad A championships in 1994 and 2005. McKeesport made the playoffs each of his final 15 seasons and the 1994 team went a perfect 15-0.

The 2005 Tigers scored 626 points, which was the fourth highest in WPIAL football history at the time.

He was one of 10 inductees into the 2013 Western Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame Class.

The other new WPIAL coaches are: Baldwin's Pete Wagner, Bishop Canevin's Darren Schoppe, Canon-McMillan's Ron Coder, Chartiers Valley's Niel Loebig, Deer Lakes' T.J. Wiley, East Allegheny's Dom Pecora, Fort Cherry's Jim Shiel, Freedom's Tom Dubovic, Gateway's Donnie Militzer, Greensburg Salem's Dave Keefer, Hollidaysburg's Homer DeLattre, Laurel's Pat Cuba, Northgate's Brandon LeDonne, North Hills' Pat Carey, Pine-Richland's Eric Kasperowicz, Plum's Matt Morgan, Serra Catholic's Tony St. Angelo, Shenango's Mike Commesso, Southmoreland's Mark Adams, West Greene's Paul Kreuzer and West Shamokin's Jon McCullough.

Carrick's Craig Aguglia is the new City League football head coach.

Jason Bell was the first-year head coach at Imani Christian but the East Hills school dropped football during preseason camp due to not enough player.

Bruce Wald is a contributing writer.