Chartiers Valley eyes improvement in Knause’s 3rd season at helm

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Friday, August 16, 2019 | 3:49 PM


This season marks Year 3 of Dan Knause’s tenure as Chartiers Valley’s football coach. Knause is hoping this also marks the season the Colts break through.

“When you go into your third year, it’s the first year they’ve had you longer than they had the previous coaching staff,” Knause said. “The adjustment period is kind of over, and you expect them to play faster and more physical now that they have been in your system.”

The Colts suffered through a winless season in the Class 5A Allegheny 8 and finished 3-7 overall. Three of those conference losses — Woodland Hills, Upper St. Clair and Baldwin — were by 14 points or fewer, and they were games, Knause said, the Colts had a chance to win until late.

But Knause is confident his team has more depth this season. That, he said, should go a long way toward turning some of those close losses into wins.

“We have very talented guys who can play both ways,” he said. “Guys don’t have to play 120 snaps a game. We lost some very close games in the fourth quarter, and we felt the other teams might have had some more gas in the tank.”

The Colts return six starters on offense and five on defense. Leading the way for the offense is senior quarterback Griffin Beattie (6-foot-1, 178 pounds), who was a first-year starter in 2018.

Beattie showed flashes, finishing with more than 300 all-purpose yards three times. With a year of experience and a playbook more suited to his style, Beattie said he should have a better, more consistent season.

“Our offense is not completely different, but they put in the stuff that was working and took out the stuff that didn’t,” Beattie said. “They kept the stuff I was comfortable running and the whole offense was comfortable running. They’re optimizing our opportunities to succeed on offense.”

Beattie’s favorite target is senior tight end Sean Banas (6-2, 243), who was first-team all-conference last season. Banas caught 25 passes for 400 yards and five touchdowns.

Banas figures to have plenty of help in the passing game. Senior receivers Dammion Bundridge (6-0, 156) and Caleb Nelson (5-10, 146) are returning starters, and junior Anthony Collura (6-0, 145), though short on varsity experience, could be a major factor.

“He will be a great help at the skill slots and safety,” Beattie said. “He is taking over almost a veteran role mentally and physically. Even though he hasn’t been there before, he is playing like he has.”

The linebacking corps should be strong with returning starters Banas, Antonio Zambrano (5-6, 169) and Andre Thomas (5-9, 155). The offensive and defensive lines return starters Jayden Davis (6-1, 236) and Chase Bruggeman (5-8, 230), and juniors Jake Adwar (5-11, 232) and Seth Bauman (5-10, 254), Knause said, have shown promise.

Junior Jordan Demus (5-10, 148) returns to his starting corner slot.

A player who Knause expects to use in multiple roles is junior Socrates Boulis (6-1, 162). Boulis can play in the defensive backfield, at receiver and even slot in at quarterback on occasion.

The Colts are eager for a winning season, and Beattie said he believes this finally could be the year.

“After a win or a loss (last season), everyone was so excited for the next week,” he said. “Everyone was ramped up for the next game. No one was hanging their heads. If we keep all our guys healthy, we should be in business.”

Schedule

Coach: Dan Knause

2018 record: 3-7, 0-7

All-time record: 231-338-5

Date, Opponent, Time

8.23, at Ringgold, 7

8.30, at West Allegheny*, 7

9.6, Armstrong, 7

9.13, Norwin, 7

9.20, at Moon*, 7

9.27, Baldwin*, 7

10.4, at Bethel Park*, 7:30

10.11, at Peters Township*, 7

10.18, Upper St. Clair*, 7

10.25, Woodland Hills*, 7

*Class 5A Allegheny 8 Conference game

Statistical leaders

Passing: Griffin Beattie

46-106, 635 yards, 7 TDs

Receiving: Sean Banas

26-368 yards, 5 TDs

Rushing: Connor Barrett*

171-961 yards, 13 TDs

*Graduated

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