Kiski Area girls basketball coach Ionadi resigns

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Thursday, February 22, 2018 | 8:27 PM


Nick Ionadi frequently spent seven days a week in the gym working with his girls basketball pupils. But with extra hours cropping up in his other job, including more night and weekend shifts, something had to give.

Citing personal, work-related reasons, Ionadi resigned from his job as Kiski Area girls basketball coach after six seasons.

“If I can't put the amount of time into it that I need to put into it, if I can't do it right, then I'm not going to do it,” Ionadi said.

Kiski Area athletic director John Peterman confirmed Ionadi's resignation and said the school already was searching for a replacement, with the hopes of filling the vacancy quickly.

Ionadi took over in 2012, with a long rebuilding job ahead — at the time, he said, only around 20 players were in the Kiski Area girls basketball program from the elementary to high school levels.

After a six-win inaugural campaign, Kiski Area won a combined two games in the next three seasons before posting improved records the past two seasons.

The Cavaliers went 8-13 overall and 3-9 in Section 4-5A play in 2017-18, finishing a game out of a playoff spot. Sophomore Harley Holloway earned first-team all-section honors, while junior Violeta Kenzevich and sophomore Hannah Potter made honorable mention.

Ionadi said he took pride in the numbers growth and skill development over the course of his tenure.

“To go back to when we started, we barely had enough girls to fill a team,” said Ionadi, adding that about 135 girls were in the youth programs this season. “I said by year five or six we could field a team that could make a playoff run, and we did exactly what we said we'd do. I'm proud of what we did. We basically took it from nothing, and it's in great shape now.”

Although unsure of his future for now, Ionadi expects to return to the sidelines at some point.

“We did it the right way and we did it in-house, and I think the results speak for themselves,” Ionadi said. “When you look at the grand scheme of things, yeah, we lost a lot of games when we were there. But you've got to look at where we started and where we ended up.”

Doug Gulasy is a Tribune-Review staff writer.

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