COLUMBIANA, Ohio (WKBN) – “It’s going to be a learning curve for us this year. We got a lot of new guys competing for positions,” said Crestview Head Coach Paul Cusick. “So, we’re trying to grow up in a hurry and that’s what we’re doing during camp and during doubles now. How fast can we get ready for week one because it’s a new experience for a lot of these guys. So, that’s kind of the growth process right now.”
Watch the above video to hear more from Coach Cusick about the upcoming season.
2020 Record: 7-2 (4-1, T-1st in MVAC Grey Tier)
Coach: Paul Cusick, 26th season (177-98)
Previewing Crestview’s Offense
Scoring Offense: 35.9 (7th in Area)
Total Offense: 405.0
Returning Starters: 2
Key Returnees: Anthony Cusick, SR/QB; Jack Yerkey, SR/WR
Key Losses: Wyatt Babik, OL; William Hardenbrook, RB; Cole Kerchofer, OL; Ethan Powell, RB; Kyle Saunders, OL; Brandon Yanssens, WR
Name to watch for: Anthony Cusick, QB
Crestview must replace nine starters from last year’s group, which averaged over 400 yards of total offense and scored 36 points per game.
The Rebels return their starting quarterback Anthony Cusick (1262 passing yards, 54.6%, 15 TDs).
“Anytime you have a two-year starter return, especially at quarterback, it’s a huge help to your team,” said Coach Paul Cusick. “Anthony has improved each year and will be our leader. His experience as the team’s signal caller will help the inexperienced players mature and develop throughout the pre-season.”
Cusick will have Roclen Bettura, Dominic Yerkey, Bryce Blower, Zander Witherow and Jake Parker all competing for time at running back. Jack Yerkey, Kirkland Miller and Matthew Strank will each be looked at as Cusick’s top receivers entering camp. Yerkey caught 8 passes for an average of 13.6 yards per catch.
There’s open competition for each line spot this summer.
“Our players are working hard this off-season. They realize all five spots are open,” Cusick said.
Look for Kaden Stickney, Cameron Dickey, Zach Chizmar, Owen Wine, Hunter DuVall, Mason Greathouse, Cade Hancox, Dalton Hart, Russell Hetrick and Caden Mustake to be in the hunt for those positions.
Previewing Crestview’s Defense
Scoring Defense: 12.4 (1st in Area)
Returning Starters: 3
Key Returnees: Roclen Bettura, JR/LB; Cameron Dickey, SR/DE; Daniel Fitzgerald, SR/DB
Key Losses: Wyatt Babik, DL; Anthony Bryarly, DL; William Hardenbrook, LB; Kain McIntosh, LB; Kaden Paskevitch, DB; Tony Perorazio, DB; Anthony Sebastian, DL; Brandon Yanssens, DB
Name to watch for: Roclen Bettura, LB
Crestview led the area in points allowed per game (12.4) as they held seven of their nine opponents to 15 points or less. The Rebels’ defense forced a total of 12 turnovers.
Junior Roclen Bettura took team-high honors in tackles (109), tackles for a loss (17) and quarterback sacks (six) a year ago.
“Roclen has over 200 tackles coming into his junior year,” Cusick said. “Roclen is a playmaker for us on defense and he provides energy for his teammates.”
Bettura is joined by defensive end Cameron Dickey (27 tackles) and defensive back Daniel Fitzgerald (19 tackles) as returning starters on the defensive side of the ball.
“We’re hoping to utilize our speed,” Cusick said. “Defensively, we should have good team speed.”
2020 MVAC Grey Tier Standings
Brookfield – 5-1 (6-4)
Crestview – 4-1 (7-2)
LaBrae – 3-2 (6-4)
Champion – 2-2 (2-3)
Memorial – 2-3 (2-5)
Liberty – 1-5 (1-6)
Newton Falls – 0-3 (1-6)
Aug. 19 – Salem
Aug. 27 – at Southern
Sept. 3 – at United
Sept. 10 – at Campbell Memorial
Sept. 17 – Liberty
Sept. 24 – Brookfield
Oct. 1 – at LaBrae
Oct. 8 – at Garrettsville Garfield
Oct. 15 – Champion
Oct. 22 – at Newton Falls