New coach looks for turnaround
Cella takes over a team that went winless last year

Coach - Lou Cella

Nanticoke Football players l-r Jake Myers 32, Ed Espillat 5, Darryl Widder 3, Deric Grohowski 11, Brandon Novak 25, Darrian Twyman 1, Alex Golanowski 51, and Chris Chesla 86.

New Nanticoke coach Lou Cella is approaching the challenge of taking over a team winless a year ago with eagerness and vigor.
He is also bringing a sense of reality with him.
Cella, the Trojans’ third coach in four years, knows there is no easy fix to getting the program back on track.
Cella has been pleased how the players have responded since he was hired in February.
“Every single one of our kids made 90 percent of the workouts in the summer,” Cella said. “They’re ready to go. They work very hard and are very coachable.
“I mean when you’ve been this bad for this long, you have to change learned behavior. How we change learned behavior is we found kids who wanted to be here 12 months a year. If they were playing other sports, they wanted to be active 12 months a year and we built the program around them.
“That’s how we start to turn around this program.”
Nanticoke will switch to a triple-option offense, which will give new starting quarterback Deric Grohowski the choice of running the ball himself, handing it to the running back – either Nick Kerbaugh Justin Wiernusz – or pitching it to either the slotback.
The offense, said Cella, will take the burden off the offensive line, which had trouble blocking last season. The rushing attack averaged 2.1 yards per carry in 2007, with Wiernusz the team’s top rusher with a mere 189 yards.
“We ran it when I coached in New Jersey from 98-2000, and we went to the state semifinals in ’99 running triple-option and I’ve continued to run it to this day,” Cella said.
Four slotbacks – Ed Espillat, Brandon Novakoski, Darian Twyman and Darryl Widder – will also get their cracks running the ball.
Center Alex Golanowski will be the anchor of the line.
“He’s a tough kid, a hard working kid,” Cella said. “He represents exactly what we want in this program.”
Stan Hughes and Al Leiby will be the guards. Andrew Agustini will be the right tackle, while either Chad Hashagen or Kyle Kotz will be the left tackle. The tackle trio isn’t very bulky, but that’s not a huge obstacle in the offense.
Chris Chesla, former quarterback Beau Colatosti, Crestwood transfer Ryan Evans and Jake Myers will be the receivers.
The rush defense was terrible last year. It allowed 8.2 yards per carry, had two opponents rush for over 300 yards and another fall just short of 500 in a game.
“We have to turn the ball back inside, eliminate explosive plays in the running game,” Cella said. “Those runs over 12 yards have to be eliminated.”
The hope is Joe Johnson – a 6-foot-6, 385 pounder – can clog thing up at the nose. Golanowski will be at defensive tackle, with Agustini and Kotz at ends.
Rob Smith will be on the weak side, Myers and Colotosti will be in the middle and Novakoski will be on the strong side.
The secondary is the strength of the team. Twyman and Widder will be at the corners, Evans at strong safety and Espillat or Chesla will be the free safety.
Success won’t be determined in the win column at least for this season. Cella and his staff want to put down a foundation for a program that is 7-43 over the last five years, with five of those victories coming against the now-closed Bishop Hafey and Bishop O’Reilly.
The schedule is a little easier as Coughlin and Dallas have been dropped and Columbia-Montour Vo-Tech and Mid Valley added, so that should help as well.

- Times Leader

No. Name Ht. Wt. Pos. Gr.
1 Darian Twyman 6-1 170 SB-DB Jr.
3 Darryl Widder 5-10 175 SB-DB Sr.
4 Alyssa Jaskulski 5-3 150 K Jr.
5 Ed Espillat 6-1 160 SB-DB Jr.
7 Ryan Evans 5-9 150 WR-DB Jr.
8 Tyler DeGraffenreid 6-2 180 QB-LB So.
9 Nick Kerbaugh 5-9 175 RB-LB Sr.
11 Deric Grohowski 5-11 170 QB-DB Jr.
13 Matt Glidden 5-10 145 WR-DB Sr.
22 Justin Wiernusz 5-11 205 RB-LB Sr.
24 Rob Smith 6-1 190 RB-LB Sr.
25 Brandon Novakoski 5-11 150 SB-LB Sr.
32 Jake Myers 6-1 165 WR-LB Jr.
40 Beau Colatosti 6-1 185 WR-LB Sr.
50 Chad Hashagen 6-1 175 OL-DL Jr.
51 Alex Golanowski 6-1 220 OL-DL Sr.
54 Kyle Kotz 5-7 170 OL-DL Jr.
56 Rob Kotz 5-7 185 OL-LB So.
55 Andrew Agustini 5-7 170 OL-DL Jr.
72 Alex Leiby 6-1 225 OL-DL So.
75 Tom Fortuna 5-5 225 OL-DL So.
77 Stan Hughes 6-2 285 OL-DL Sr.
78 Joe Johnson 6-6 385 OL-DL Sr.
86 Chris Chesla 6-1 185 WR-DB Jr.

At a glance - Times Leader

Coach: Lou Cella (2-18) 1st at Nanticoke; 3rd overall
Division: WVC 2A
PIAA Class: 2A
Returning starters: not available
Male enrollment: 289
School phone: 735-7781
Stadium location: Kosciuszko St., Nanticoke
Key player lost: Joel Fetterman, WR-LB; Jess Stine, TE-DL
2007 regular-season leaders
PASSING: Tim Bevan 31-of-103, 539 yds., 1 TD, 4 Ints.
RUSHING: Justin Wiernusz 51-189, 3.7 avg., 0 TD
RECEIVING: Joel Fetterman 15-195, 13.0 avg., 0 TD
SCORING: Tim Bevan 12 pts.

Fri., Aug. 29 at Wyoming Area 7 p.m.
Sat., Sept. 6 at Col-Mont Vo-Tech 1 p.m.
Fri., Sept. 12 Meyers 7 p.m.
Fri., Sept. 19 Mid Valley 7 p.m.
Fri., Sept. 26 at Old Forge 7 p.m.
Fri., Oct. 3 Northwest 7 p.m.
Fri., Oct. 10 Lake-Lehman 7 p.m.
Sat., Oct. 18 at GAR 7 p.m.
Fri., Oct. 24 Holy Redeemer 7 p.m.
Fri., Oct. 31 at Hanover Area 7 p.m.

2007 Results (0-10)
Central Columbia…L 40-0
Meyers…L 42-16
GAR…L 35-0
Wyoming Area…L 50-0
Holy Redeemer…L 20-7
Northwest…L 42-6
Coughlin…L 49-7
Dallas…L 55-0
Lake-Lehman…L 31-8
Hanover Area…L 48-0

Citizens Voice Article

Lou Cella, who was the head coach at Bishop O’Reilly during the 2003-04 seasons, returned to the coaching ranks when he was hired at Nanticoke Area.
Used to low numbers from his days at O’Reilly, Cella has been pleasantly surprised with the improvement the Trojans have been making each day during camp.
“We completely cleansed the program,” Cella said. “We have tried to change everything from the work ethic to the attitude. I don’t know what they did before, but the kids we have right now want to be football players.”
The Trojans will have their work cut out for them this year, especially on opening night when they face Wyoming Area.
Also, Nanticoke Area finished last season 0-10 and has not beaten a Wyoming Valley Conference opponent since the ninth week of the 2006 season.