The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

February 12, 2013

4 Conemaugh Twp. wrestling coaches remain suspended

Dave Sutor

DAVIDSVILLE — Four Conemaugh Township High School wrestling coaches remain suspended indefinitely.

Head coach Jarod Feathers, along with assistants Pat Berzonski, Adam Thomas and Pat Cotchen, have been out of their positions since late January. The Conemaugh Township school board discussed their status during a three-hour executive session on Monday night, but took no action.

Superintendent Gary Buchsen could legally offer only limited comments.

“Anything involving personnel and students in the district is held in confidence,” said Buchsen.

Members of the team and boosters showed up to support the coaches. A petition with more than 100 signatures was presented to the board.

Laurie Grosik, a spokeswoman for the boosters, asked the board to “stop penalizing Conemaugh Township graduates who have given much of their time, talent, heart and soul to the students in our district.”

Tanner Cahill, a senior wrestler, asked the board to consider the remainder of the 2012-13 season when making a decision.

“Our coaches know everything about us,” said Cahill. “It’s critical to have them for the rest of the season with districts, regionals and states coming up.”

The coaches were first absent in the week preceding the Thomas Subaru tournament in Bedford, held Jan. 25-26.

Rumors have persisted that a few team members participated in a graphic hazing incident when the Indians were staying in a hotel during a two-day, out-of-town tournament over the Jan. 18-19 weekend.

Current high school principal and former head coach Dave Koba has been serving as acting head coach.

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