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Keller, Centurions have new targets this season

| Thursday, Aug. 22, 2013, 8:55 p.m.
Barry Reeger | Tribune-Review
Greensburg Central Catholic quarterback Chase Keller passes during the Westmoreland County Coaches Association 7 on 7 football tournament at Franklin Regional High School on July 18, 2013, in Murrysville.
Barry Reeger | Tribune-Review
Greensburg Central Catholic linebacker Nate Stone breaks up a pass during the Westmoreland County Coaches Association 7 on 7 football tournament at Franklin Regional High School on July 18, 2013, in Murrysville.
Barry Reeger | Tribune-Review
Greensburg Central Catholic head coach Dan Mahoney talks with one of his players during the Westmoreland County Coaches Association 7 on 7 football tournament at Franklin Regional High School on July 18, 2013, in Murrysville.
Barry Reeger | Tribune-Review
Greensburg Central Catholic head coach Dan Mahoney calls for a two-point conversion during the Westmoreland County Coaches Association 7 on 7 football tournament at Franklin Regional High School on July 18, 2013, in Murrysville.
Barry Reeger | Tribune-Review
Greensburg Central Catholic's Eddie Kilkeary catches a touchdown pass during the Westmoreland County Coaches Association 7 on 7 football tournament at Franklin Regional High School on July 18, 2013, in Murrysville.
Barry Reeger | Tribune-Review
Greensburg Central Catholic running back Nate Stone gains yardage during the Westmoreland County Coaches Association 7 on 7 football tournament at Franklin Regional High School on July 18, 2013, in Murrysville.
Barry Reeger | Tribune-Review
Greensburg Central Catholic quarterback Chase Keller passes during the Westmoreland County Coaches Association 7 on 7 football tournament at Franklin Regional High School on July 18, 2013, in Murrysville.
Barry Reeger | Tribune-Review
Greensburg Central Catholic running back Nate Stone hauls in a pass during the Westmoreland County Coaches Association 7 on 7 football tournament at Franklin Regional High School on July 18, 2013, in Murrysville.
Barry Reeger | Tribune-Review
Greensburg Central Catholic's Eddie Kilkeary attempst to make a catch during the Westmoreland County Coaches Association 7 on 7 football tournament at Franklin Regional High School on July 18, 2013, in Murrysville.
Barry Reeger | Tribune-Review
Greensburg Central Catholic's Tyler Balla gains yardage during the Westmoreland County Coaches Association 7 on 7 football tournament at Franklin Regional High School on July 18, 2013, in Murrysville.
Barry Reeger | Tribune-Review
Greensburg Central Catholic's Tommy Pellis catches a pass during the Westmoreland County Coaches Association 7 on 7 football tournament at Franklin Regional High School on July 18, 2013, in Murrysville.
Barry Reeger | Tribune-Review
Greensburg Central Catholic quarterback Chase Keller passes during the Westmoreland County Coaches Association 7 on 7 football tournament at Franklin Regional High School on July 18, 2013, in Murrysville.
Barry Reeger | Tribune-Review
Greensburg Central Catholic's August Shotts gains yardage during the Westmoreland County Coaches Association 7 on 7 football tournament at Franklin Regional High School on July 18, 2013, in Murrysville.
Barry Reeger | Tribune-Review
Greensburg Central Catholic running back Nate Stone listens as head coach Dan Mahoney gives instruction during the Westmoreland County Coaches Association 7 on 7 football tournament at Franklin Regional High School on July 18, 2013, in Murrysville.

It was not a typical season for the Greensburg Central Catholic football team in 2012.

The Centurions had a tumultuous offseason that saw longtime coach Muzzy Colosimo relieved of his duties prior to the start of preseason practice and a couple of players get suspended for the season.

The result was a fourth-place finish in the Interstate Conference and a first-round WPIAL Class AA playoff loss to Seton-La Salle.

It was the first time since the Centurions joined Class AA in 2002 they finished lower than second place in the conference.

School officials named Dan Mahoney and Matt Federico as co-coaches prior to the 2012 season, but now Mahoney is the head coach and Federico is his top assistant.

If there was a bright spot to the season, it was the brilliant play of quarterback Chase Keller, who accounted for most of the Centurions' offense.

Keller rushed for 577 yards and four touchdowns and completed 86 of 151 passes for 1,378 yards and 15 touchdowns.

Mahoney said Keller has no Division I offers yet, but he has received interest from teams in the Mid-American Conference.

And while running back Tyler Balla and tight end/fullback Nate Stone return, Keller will be throwing to a bunch of new receivers, including Eddie Kilkeary and Tommy Pellis.

Balla rushed for 309 yards in 2012.

“Depth is a concern,” Mahoney said. “If we lose a couple players to injuries, we'll struggle.”

Mahoney welcomes back five players on the offensive line and a solid front eight on defense.

“We've been young and inexperienced along the offensive line the past two seasons,” Mahoney said. “Hopefully, the line will be a strong point.”

The secondary will be all new after Zach Guiser, Garrett Brooks and Corey Marshall graduated.

Senior linebackers Seth Warburton, Nate Stone, Kilkeary and J.T. Astalos return, along with defensive linemen August Shotts and Jon Murray.

“I'm excited about the secondary,” Mahoney said. “We have some kids who can play. The linebackers were strong a year ago, and I expect them to be strong again.

“I like our senior leadership, and the offseason has been really good. We have to stay focused and continue to work hard.”

Greensburg Central Catholic's defense will be tested during the first two weeks of the season against title contenders Washington and Mt. Pleasant.

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