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Alle-Kiski Valley high school notebook: Riverview hires boys hoops coach

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Bubba Watson watches his tee shot during a practice round for the 114th U.S. Open on Tuesday, on June 10, 2014, at Pinehurst Resort & Country Club, Course No. 2 in Pinehurst, N.C.

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Tuesday, June 10, 2014, 11:00 p.m.

Former Fox Chapel assistant Joe Farrell is the new boys basketball coach at Riverview. Farrell, 47, replaces Kevin Krajca, who was not retained after 12 seasons.

Farrell, who served as a boys assistant to Zach Skrinjar for the past five years, was a head coach at Aquinas Academy for two years. The Oakmont resident will guide the Raiders as they transition to Class A in the WPIAL.

“Obviously, I am looking to see results very quickly,” said Farrell, a 1985 Central Catholic graduate who played one season at Clarion. “A team is only as strong as its weakest link. I intend to find that link and tighten it.”

Basketball runs in the Farrell family. Farrell and his five brothers, as well as his father, “Hooks,” played for Central.

A stay-at-home father to three children, Joe Farrell also coaches junior varsity baseball and golf at Fox Chapel.

“It's going to be tough leaving (Skrinjar). We're both Central guys, had a lot of good times,” Farrell said. “You get to know a lot of the coaches in the section. You have to form new relationships; coaching is a fraternity.”

Farrell plans to bring former Riverview girls hoops assistant Sean Knapp on as an assistant. Knapp, one of the state's most successful amateur golfers, knows Farrell well. The Raiders' new coach is his longtime caddie.

Petrishen gets Pitt offer

Scholarship offer No. 24 for Central Catholic incoming senior football standout Johnny Petrishen belongs to Pitt. The Panthers reached out to the Lower Burrell native after his performance at their prospect camp last week. Many of Petrishen's offers are from the Ivy League, but Virginia is another BCS offer on the table. Petrishen is a 6-foot-2, 190-pound receiver and safety.

Pitt has offered three local players from the Class of 2015. Kittanning's Nick Bowers committed to the Panthers in January and Apollo-Ridge's Tre Tiption received an offer last week, also following a showing at the prospect camp.

Petrishen doesn't have a timetable for his decision.

“One day I see myself committing after the season and weighing out all my options, another day I see myself committing (now). At this point, I'm just letting things fall into place.”

Bill Beckner Jr. is the local sports editor of the Valley News Dispatch. Reach him at

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