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Central Valley suspends football coach Lyons for 2 games

| Thursday, Sept. 19, 2013, 2:03 p.m.
Christopher Horner
Central Valley coach Mark Lyons. Christopher Horner | Tribune-Review

The WPIAL found that Central Valley football coach Mark Lyons had not violated league recruiting rules, but his administration levied a two-game suspension Thursday for having had contact with the parent of a player who later transferred into the district.

“The district has and always will do the right thing as a member in good standing with the WPIAL,” Central Valley superintendent Nick Perry said.

The suspension will start Monday. Central Valley (3-0) is ranked No. 3 in WPIAL Class AAA. Lyons will miss Parkway Conference games against West Allegheny and Moon. He will coach Friday against Blackhawk.

Lyons could not be reached.

The situation involved Central Valley lineman Tyler Beatrice, who transferred from Blackhawk.

The WPIAL approved his eligibility at a hearing in May, but the league held a second hearing Wednesday after Central Valley delivered information to the WPIAL not presented earlier.

“(The administration) felt an obligation to bring to the attention of the WPIAL concerns over possible contact between our football coach and the parents of one of our student-athletes,” Perry said.

The WPIAL, which commended the school's self-reporting, again declared Beatrice eligible. But the board believed earlier testimony at the May hearing “wasn't necessarily forthright and truthful,” said WPIAL executive director Tim O'Malley.

“The board was of the opinion that there was an issue” with Lyons' actions, but “since we have no jurisdiction over personnel, the WPIAL board unanimously referred this back to Central Valley School District to act as they felt appropriate,” O'Malley said.

Beatrice's eligibility was not an issue.

“There was no indication that (Lyons) in any way, shape or form recruited that kid,” O'Malley said.

Beaver Falls transfer Kahlil Caracter, who also had a WPIAL hearing Wednesday, was ruled eligible to play football for the Tigers once he resolves attendance issues that began at Freedom.

The senior can join the team either next week or Oct. 1, pending a decision by school administrators. Caracter (5-foot-9, 175 pounds) rushed for 1,153 yards and 14 TDs last season at Freedom, which contested the transfer.

Chris Harlan is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at charlan@tribweb.com or via Twitter @CHarlan_Trib.

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