COLUMBIANA Ohio (WKBN) – Fifteen playoff appearances in the last 18 years — that’s the benchmark for a Crestview program that seems to produce standout players and its formula for winning year after year.

Coach Paul Cusick said, “We talk with our players about the expectations of the Rebel football program. We feel the standard has been set high by our past players and coaches. We’ll strive to continue to play at that level. The standard is the standard. Our goals are to compete for a league championship, get to week 11 and advance each week.”

This season, the Rebels enter the summer without a few key players, including quarterback Anthony Cusick (1,836 passing yards, 20 TDs; 480 rushing yards).

“Replacing that [leadership] is always a tough task,” said Coach Cusick. “It’ll open opportunities for returning players to step up and be leaders. We [expect] to have an open competition at quarterback [this summer].”

Senior Roclen Bettura leads the offense after rushing for 1,158 yards (14 TDs) and hauling in 33 passes for 371 stripes (6 TDs). The Rebels also return three other receivers who caught 25 passes or more a season ago – Zander Witherow (36 catches, 420 yards), Kirkland Miller (32 catches, 382 yards) and Dominic Yerkey (26 catches, 290 yards).

Defensively, Roclen Bettura led the unit in tackles (152), tackles for a loss (22), quarterback sacks (4) and hurries (9). In the defensive backfield, Dominic Yerkey had 64 tackles (11 TFL) and a trio of quarterback takedowns last fall.

Cusick added, “We expect Roclen and Dominic to be the leaders on the defensive side of the ball. Hunter [Duvall] has the potential to be an impact player on the line of scrimmage.”

Kirkland Miller also finished with 28 tackles, while Duvall closed out his 2021 with 29 tackles and five of those were for a loss.

Crestview travels to Salem for a week one collision from Sebo Stadium on August 18.

Crestview Rebels
Fast Facts
Head Coach: Paul Cusick, 24th season at Crestview (173-81)
2021 Record: 5-5 (4-2), T-3rd place in MVAC Grey Tier
Last 5 Years: 29-21 (58%)
Home Field: Rebel Stadium
League: Mahoning Valley Athletic Conference, Grey Tier
Base Offense: Zone Read
Base Defense: 4-2-5

Returning Starters
Offense: 8
Defense: 7

2021 Team Stats
Scoring Offense: 29.6 (25th in Area)
Scoring Defense: 23.1 (24th in Area)
Total Offense: 379.2
Rushing Offense: 187.2
Passing Offense: 192.0

2021 Individual Leaders
Passing: Anthony Cusick – 1,836 yards, 57.2% (158-276), 20 TDs
Rushing: Roclen Bettura – 1,158 yards, 6.2 avg, 14 TDs
Receiving: Zander Witherow – 420 yards, 11.7 avg, 3 TDs
Tackles: Roclen Bettura – 152
Quarterback Sacks: Roclen Bettura – 4.0
Interceptions: Joey Carr & Matthew Strank – 2

2021 Results
Bellaire 27 Rebels 20*
Rebels 48 Newton Falls 20
Rebels 44 Champion 38, OT
LaBrae 34 Rebels 13
Brookfield 20 Rebels 13
Rebels 49 Liberty 13
Rebels 47 Campbell Memorial 7
United 28 Rebels 21
Rebels 28 Southern 6
Salem 38 Rebels 13

2021 MVAC Grey Tier Standings
Garfield – 6-0 (12-1)
LaBrae – 6-1 (11-2)
Brookfield – 4-2 (7-4)
Crestview – 4-2 (5-5)
Liberty – 3-3 (5-5)
Champion – 2-5 (2-8)
Newton Falls – 1-6 (3-7)
Campbell – 0-7 (1-9)

2022 Schedule
Aug. 18 – at Salem
Aug. 26 – Southern
Sept. 2 – United
Sept. 9 – at Campbell Memorial
Sept. 16 – Liberty
Sept. 23 – at Brookfield
Sept. 30 – at LaBrae
Oct. 7 – Garfield
Oct. 14 – at Champion
Oct. 21 – Newton Falls