The Tri-County Athletic Directors’ Association Coach of the Year Banquet has always made it a priority to point out academic excellence and contribution to athletics that go beyond basic playing and coaching.
Each year, the banquet recognizes scholar-athletes, individuals who contribute to sports in their community, and the Special Olympics Athlete of the Year, as chosen by that organization.
These individuals will be honored at the banquet, which will be held at 5 p.m. Sunday at the DoubleTree by Hilton, Meadow Lands.
Tickets for the banquet are $35 each and can be purchased by calling Burgettstown High School athletic director Jon Vallina at 724-947-8109. Proceeds benefit Tri-County Special Olympics.
The following is a brief bio of each honoree:
Meghan Canterna Memorial Award –Special Olympics Athlete of the Year
Becky is a 22-year-old Special Olympics athlete. As a 14-year veteran, she participates in basketball, skiing, swimming, bocce, and golf to maintain her athletic prowess throughout the year. She maintains high competitive standards and strives to reach for gold. She brings enthusiasm, commitment and a positive attitude to each practice, event and competition. She has participated in SOPA/SOYO Multi-Sports Training Camp held at Antiochain Village in Bolivar for four consecutive years. Becky possesses the skills and spirit that define a true athlete.
Rebecca graduated from Charleroi High School. She has participated in vocational training programs to provide her the skills necessary for gainful employment. Currently, she volunteers as an assistant child care provider and is learning homemaker skills under her mother’s tutelage. Her hobbies include socializing with girlfriends and completing word search puzzles. She loves to watch movies and a particular favorite is “Alvin and the Chipmunks.”
Rebecca is the daughter of Wanda Cook and Curt Cook; sister of Cliff Cook, Billy Cook, Kim Scalise, and Mike Day; aunt of Delanie Day, Addison Day, Ava Scalise, and Gino Scalise.
Roy Gillespie Memorial Special Award
For nearly three decades, Dan Petrola has been the executive director of the Brownson House. In that span and the decades prior to that, the Brownson House has been a source of athletic opportunity for all age groups in this area. Petrola has created a strong atmosphere of competitiveness and camaraderie in sports. The Brownson House offers numerous opportunities for these activities, including flag football, basketball, football, lacrosse, indoor soccer and boxing.
Approximately 3,000 people take part in Brownson House related activities each year. The facilities have been used for clinics, cheerleading practice, inline hockey, adult co-ed volleyball and junior varsity and varsity volleyball.
Petrola is a 1968 graduate of Immaculate Conception High School and a
1973 graduate of California University.
Tri-County Athletic Director Award
Joe Farkas, South Fayette
Farkas has been married to his wife Jan for 34 years and has two grown sons, Joey and Jason. He retired from teaching at South Fayette three years ago with 35 years of service, but continues to be the athletic director. He has been athletic director at South Fayette for the last 27 years.
Farkas graduated from South Fayette High School and Slippery Rock University in 1975, receiving a degree in Physical Education and Health. He was the boys varsity basketball Coach for 18 years, taking the team in his final year to the elite eight. In his earlier years, Farkas coached football and middle school basketball at South Fayette. He also instituted the Little Hooper Basketball Program at the elementary level early in his tenure. Farkas will be retiring as athletic director after the 2013-2014 school year.
Bill Christy Sportsmanship Award
Delany Dalfonso, Monessen
Dalfonso is a member of the National Honor Society and french National Honor Society. She has a 4.238 grade-point average, finishing sixth out of 60 students. Dalfonso is involved in Future Business Leaders of America, French Club, Students Against Destructive Decisions, Student Government and Leo Club.
Dalfonso is a three-year starter on the softball team, playing outfield and owning a batting average above .400.
Bill Christy Memorial Award – Excellence in officiating
Osleger is a retired science teacher, having taught in the Ringgold School District for 35 years. He has coached basketball for more than 30 years and has been the golf coach there for the past 28. He began umpiring 34 years ago. In that time span, he has umpired thousands of youth baseball and softball games at all levels. He has officiated numerous WPIAL
baseball and softball championships as well as the PIAA state baseball and softball championships. He considers umpiring the Pony League World Series as one of his most rewarding experiences.
For the past 30 years, he has umpired NCAA softball at all levels, including the NCAA regionals and many college conference championships. He also works as an evaluator of officials for the WPIAL and PIAA in basketball and softball. He is rules interpreter for the Mon Valley baseball and softball chapters of officials, as well as for the Harmon Creek
A longtime Monongahela resident, Osleger has been married 31 years to his wife, Sue, a 36-year official herself. His family includes son Todd, daughter-in-law Danielle, grandson Samuel; and son Kent and daughter-in-law Mallory.
Preisendorfer has been an official for 36 years and is a member of the Washington-Greene Basketball Officials Chapter for 38 years. He officiated with Bill Christy for more than 450 basketball games. In basketball, Preisendorfer worked 19 WPIAL finals, three PIAA finals and was selected to work two Pennsylvania vs. USA in the Roundball Classic. He was named Official of the Year by the National Federation Interscholastic Officials Association in 1999.
He was a member of the Atlantic 10 officials staff for five years, worked three NCAA Division II regional tournaments and was a two-time selection for Tri-State Official of the Year.
When he isn’t officiating, Preisendorfer could be found on the golf course or boating. Preisendorfer is a 1968 graduate of Bentworth High School and graduated from Point Park College in 1972. He and his wife Lisa have two daughters, Lindsey and Gabreal.
Tri-CADA scholarship winners
Amanda Balzer, Chartiers-Houston
Balzer is a member of the National Honor Society, serving as historian, and was part of the Westinghouse Science Honors Institute. She won a letter in soccer and two in cross country, serving as captain for one year. She won four letters in basketball and three in track, where she qualified in the 300 hurdles and 100 hurdles. She owns the school record in the 100-meter hurdles. Balzer participated in marching band, concert band and flute choir. She belongs to the Varsity Club, Leo Club, Envirothon, Field & Stream Club, and Catalyst Club. Balzer plans to attend Allegheny College and major in economics with a pre-law track.
Ashley Faddis, Jefferson-Morgan
Faddis is a four-year letterwinner in basketball and track, a two-year letterwinner in volleyball and one-year winner in softball. She is involved in many clubs, including Drama Club, Big Brothers and Sisters, and Debate and Academic Team. She is president of Student Council, National Honor Society, Foreign Language Club, Thespian Society and Leo Club. Faddis is the daughter of Tim and Melissa Faddis of Dry Tavern and Scot and Lisa Moore of Waynesburg. She will attend Penn State University and major in nursing.
Danielle Jacobs, Waynesburg
Jacobs maintains a 4.0 grade-point average and will attend Penn State University next fall to major in business and pre-law. Jacobs was four-year letterwinner and captain of the basketball team, a two-year letterwinner and captain of the cross country team, and a three-year letterwinner of the track team. She also lettered for soccer. Jacobs is a secretary of the Principals Council, the National Honor Society, the senior class, varsity club and is vice president of SADD. Jacobs is a member of Student Council, Relay for Life, Spansih Club, Ski Club and Alpha.
Erin Ritzer, Bentworth
Ritzer is 2012 president of National Honor Society, a National Merit student, a member of the Academic League, Future Business Leaders of America, where she served as regional treasurer; the Westinghouse Science Honors Institute, and National Society of High School Scholars.
Ritzer won four letters in soccer and was a three-time team captain.
She was named All-WPIAL, All-Section, and led the team in goals in 2010 and 2011. She missed last season with a knee injury but runs track and was a four-year member of the basketball team. She is a two-year member of the Pa West Olympic Development Program and played for Century United Thunder, and Victory Express.
Johanna Schmidt, Ringgold
Schmidt is a member of the National Honor Society, been named a RingGOLD student , carries a 4-0 grade-point average and is a member of GEAR, The Pennsylvania Math League, Envirothon, and Academic Intramurals. Schmidt plays piano and cello and is a member of the orchestra and the Musical Pit orchestra. She played in the marching band for four years and is currently the drum major. She is in concert band, jazz band and indoor drumline. Schmidt earned three letters in cross country, ran track for two seasons and served as captain of the basketball team, where she won three letters. She is undecided on a college but plans to pursue a degree in chemical engineering.
Michael Cecchini, Laurel Highlands
Cecchini is a member of the National Honor Society and winner of the Positive Athlete Award. He will attend Penn State University next fall and study engineering. Cecchini is a four-time All-County cross country runner, named All-County in track three times and is a two-time member of the 50-point club.
Michael Fetchet, South Fayette
Fetchet is a four-year honor student and carries a 3.8 grade-point average. He is a member of the National Honor Society and will be attending Columbia University next fall to continued his academic career and compete on the wrestling team. Fetchet is a member of the Library Club, Teen Institute and Future Business Leaders of America. He is a three-sport athlete with the Lions: football, baseball and wrestling. He was a WPIAL runner-up, Southwest Region runner-up and finished fourth in the PIAA Championships this season. He was selected for the Pennsylvania All-State Academic Team for Wrestling in 2012. He is a three-year letterman in football, made all-state honorable mention as a defensive back in 2011 and was an all-state linebacker in 2012. In baseball, Fetchet was selected all-section two consecutive seasons and made The Almanac’s Diamond Dozen Team as an outfielder.
Cameron Jacobs, Waynesburg
Jacobs was a two-year captain for the soccer team and one-year captain for the basketball team. He was a state qualifier in track for the 1,600-meter run. Jacobs has a 4.0 grade-point average and will attend Penn State university in the fall. He plans to major in Petroleum and natural gas engineering. Jacobs is in the ski club, the Spanish Club, and Construction Club. He is the treasurer of the senior class, a member of student council, the National Honor Society, SADD and is vice president of the varsity club. He is the son of Jim and Tracey Jacobs.
Matt Johnston, West Greene
Johnston is an Honor Roll student and received an American Citizen Award in 2011. He has a 3.4 grade-point average and will attend Waynesburg University to study business and continue his wrestling career. He finished his senior season of wrestling with a 41-8 record and qualified for the PIAA Championships. Johnston is an avid hunter and fisherman.
Tanner Sutton, Chartiers-Houston
Sutton earned two letters in football and currently runs track. He was a four-year letterwinner in wrestling, where he finished his scholastic career with 142 wins, second in the program’s history. He is a four-time section champion, and three-time state qualifier. Sutton is a four-time member of the Observer-Reporter’s All-District Wrestling Team and served as team captain in 2013. Among Sutton’s academic achievements is his selection to the Pennsylvania Wrestling Coaches Association All-Academic Team the past two seasons. He is a member of the Varsity Club, Fly Fishers Club and the National Honor Society.
Sutton plans to major in business administration.