SEASON PREVIEW: FARRELL
The Farrell Steelerettes went 15-8 last year and just missed out on the postseason after losing to Monaca, 58-47, in the last game of the season. The team looks to forge a postseason path, but they will have to do it with their third head coach in four years, Ed Turosky.
Turosky, a 1990 Kennedy Christian grad who played for Joe Votino, has been with the team for two years as an assistant and junior varsity coach under departed head coach Rochelle Green, who coincidentally played her scholastic ball for Father Rick Tomasone at Kennedy. Now, he gets to add his own flavor to the WPIAL A squad.
"I've known them for the past two to three years, but I'm still feeling out my role as head coach," said Turosky. "Trying to instill discipline is difficult, but the girls are taking to the program."
The program will remain largely intact from last year, with some more up-tempo play, according to Turosky. The offense will be a motion-style while the defense will be man-to-man.
"The girls have been working hard in the gym," said Turosky. "But I still don't know what to expect from them."
One of the biggest losses from last year's team was Angie Santell, the second-leading scorer and "glue of the team," as Turosky put it.
"One of my biggest fears is whether the team will be able to play without her, and who will take her place."
Also gone from last year are Erin Houston, Keturah Chambers and Dwanna Hosch.
Looking to fill those leadership roles are returning seniors Sheena Matthews, who was the top scorer for Farrell last year, Fontella Jones, Wenci Ford, Kiesha Austin and Shareka Phillips.
Austin returns to the team after tearing her ACL two years ago in a junior varsity game, and Phillips is a transfer from Sharon who saw some varsity playing time with the Lady Tigers last year. Turosky is also looking to juniors Gena Elerby and Jessica Brown to add some punch to the starting five.
Brown will be filling Santell's position on the floor. Junior Noreen Whitlock is "a pleasant surprise inside," and Joni Gargano and Andrea Anderson may see some playing time, along with sophomore Danni Purich.
"My girls are absolutely ready to play," said Turosky. "They started slow because of volleyball, but they're picking it up. They need to polish a few things, but they're ready to suit up and play."
They'll need to be ready with another tough year ahead of them in the WPIAL. Farrell will battle Rochester, Western Beaver, Sewickley Academy, Quigley, Union and Monaca in Class A, and has the Clearfield and Burrell Christmas tournaments. The Steelerettes also play Sharon, Hickory and Sharpsville, as well as Warren JFK from across the border in Ohio, Shady Side Academy and Ambridge.
"Monaca has a lot returning," said Turosky. "They have Kristen Kalervo, who averaged 19 points per game as a freshman and 20 points per game as a sophomore."
Turosky also expressed concern about Rochester, with a good point guard and shooting guard on their roster.
Assisting the Steelerettes this year is former Farrell player Tiffany Holden, who replaces Turosky as the junior varsity head. -- By Herald Writer Scott DeJulia
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