Chartiers Valley athletic programs find success in 2012
By Nathan Smith
Published: Wednesday, Dec. 26, 2012, 8:57 p.m.
It was a season of ups and downs for Chartiers Valley athletics in 2012.
Several teams reached the postseason but were unable to bring home the all-important WPIAL title, and a veteran coach resigned from his position.
Here is a look at the biggest stories coming out of the Colts program in 2012.
End of an era
It would be hard to say the 2012 football season wasn't disappointing for the Colts.
Chartiers Valley made its return to the Parkway Conference after a 13-year absence but could not find much success. After opening the season 2-2, the Colts dropped five straight conference games while being outscored 230-72.
Before the final game of the season – a 48-0 loss to West Allegheny – coach Chris Saluga resigned from the position he held since 2001.
During his time as head coach, Saluga compiled a 60-61 record and recorded the program's first playoff victory in 2005. In 2005, the team also hosted its first playoff game and followed that up with its first playoff home victory in 2007. Saluga led the Colts to an 8-2 mark in 2009, the second-best record in school history.
The team reached seven straight playoffs from 2003-09 — more than double the three total WPIAL playoff appearances the program had before Saluga's hiring.
“I just felt it was time to move on,” Saluga said at the time. “I did what I could at Chartiers Valley and felt it was in the best interest for me and the program to part ways. I spent 12 years of my life building the program. It was no way an easy decision. But as time moved on, I knew it was time.”
Saluga's replacement has yet to be named.
There are few guarantees in life but one can expect to see competitive basketball played at Chartiers Valley.
The 2011-12 boys squad had an outstanding season, going 20-3 and capturing the Section 4-AAAA title.
The Colts entered the WPIAL Class AAAA tournament on a six-game winning streak but were stunned but Butler, 56-53, in the first round. Luke Hartung nailed a 3-pointer with 1.8 seconds left to give the Golden Tornadoes the win.
The Colts dropped down to Class AAA due to WPIAL realignment and haven't missed a beat. Chartiers Valley is off to a 6-0 start in 2012-13.
The girls team had its own success in 2011-12, picking up a 25-4 record.
The Lady Colts reached the WPIAL semifinals but fell to Hopewell, 40-33. The Vikings scored the first 17 points of the game and a furious Chartiers Valley comeback in the final three quarters fell short.
The Lady Colts moved onto the PIAA tournament, where they fell to Achbishop Wood, 42-37. Chartiers Valley was down 33-30 when Alexa Golden seemed to hit a layup but a traveling call took the points off the scoreboard and swung momentum to the Vikings.
The Lady Colts are off to a 5-0 start in their first season in Class AAAA in 2012-13.
The Chartiers Valley lacrosse programs continued to show progress as both squads qualified for the WPIAL postseason.
The girls squad had an amazing run in 2012, going 18-2 before falling to North Hills, 11-10, in the WPIAL Division 2 title game.
The boys squad finished 11-8 and reached the WPIAL Division 2 playoffs. The Colts defeated Shaler, 11-3, in the first round before falling to Hampton, 12-0, in the semifinals.
Justin Sabilla was a catalyst for much of the Chartiers Valley hockey team's offensive success in 2012 as he finished as the Class AA scoring leader.
The forward finished the season with 53 goals and 19 assists. Bishop Canevin's Matt Walsh came in second with 60 points.
Chartiers Valley finished the 2011-12 regular season 17-4 and won the Section 2-AA title.
The Colts reached the Class AA Penguins Cup semifinals before they fell to Erie Cathedral Prep, 6-4.
The Chartiers Valley baseball team reached the WPIAL postseason for the second straight season in 2012.
The Colts finished third in Section 3-AAA with a 9-5 mark and needed a 3-0 win over Montour on the final day of the regular season to clinch a playoff berth. The Colts defeated Knoch, 7-2, in the first round of the WPIAL playoffs before falling to eventual champions Blackhawk, 1-0, in the quarterfinals.
Nathan Smith is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 412-388-5813.
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