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High school notebook: Vincentian football coach to appeal suspension to PIAA

| Tuesday, Feb. 19, 2013, 9:18 p.m.

Vincentian Academy football coach Tim Storino has asked the PIAA to overturn his one-year suspension levied by the WPIAL, which has accused him of recruiting athletes from Catholic grade schools.

Storino, head coach for one year, was found last month to have violated rules when he visited several youth football teams and encouraged them to consider Vincentian. The WPIAL board granted Storino a rehearing Feb. 6, but the league's decision didn't change.

“I don't think anybody thought what (Storino) did he did intentionally,” WPIAL executive director Tim O'Malley said, “but the opinion of the board was that he was in violation.”

Partly at issue was the feeder system used by Catholic schools, and whether the schools Storino visited were part of Vincentian Academy's system.

“They're all within two minutes of the school,” Storino said. “The only thing I did was I went to those youth football teams and let the kids know we now have a football team at Vincentian — it's brand new — and invited some kids to an open house. That's all that was done. Apparently, you're not allowed to do that, is what they're telling us.”

The WPIAL maintains no official list of feeder schools, O'Malley said. The diocese can submit a feeder list to the PIAA, but Vincentian's most recent was several years old. Storino expects the PIAA to hear his case in March.

Board business

• The board approved section alignments for winter sports in the 2013-14 school year. Being the second year of the league's two-year cycle, there were few changes. The Laurel Highlands wrestling program returned, while Shady Side Academy and Highlands dropped theirs.

• The WPIAL again denied an appeal by Sewickley Academy's Hunter Ligo for an extra year of eligibility in lacrosse, a ruling to be appealed to the PIAA.

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