Yough hires new football coach

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Wednesday, February 5, 2020 | 10:55 AM


When Chris Chunko reached age 50, he felt his chances of becoming a head football coach were dwindling.

That was until Tuesday when Yough school board members hired him as their new coach to replace Scott Wood, who was not retained after going 1-9 in 2019.

In four seasons, Wood compiled a 10-29 record.

Chunko, who lives in West Newton, is a 1987 graduate of Monessen. He was a center who played under Hall of Fame coach Jack Scarvel.

He previously coached at California (1989-91), Charleroi (2014-17), Ringgold (2018) and Uniontown (2019). He served as defensive coordinator his past three coaching jobs.

“When I was at Charleroi with Don Militzer, we turned around the program,” Chunko said. “We went from allowing 47 points per game on defense to 16.”

When Militzer resigned from Charleroi after a 9-2 season in 2017, Chunko landed at Ringgold with Mike Zmijanac. After Zmijanic left a year later, Chunko went to Uniontown for the 2019 season.

“I’m excited,” Chunko said. “I’m grateful that Yough has given me a chance. It’s home. I live in the community and I’ve watched the players grow up in the midgets.

“I believe Yough has a bright future. The team is young and the program is on an upswing. It’s a pretty good situation.”

Chunko actually stepped away from the game on the high school level after starting a family. He did spend 12 years in the Rostraver Midget League and his teams lost only three games. He also coached in the Monessen in-house league.

“I’m looking forward to working with Chris,” Yough athletic director Tom Evans said. “I welcome him to Yough.”

Chunko said he’ll spend the next week reaching out to different coaches to join his staff.

“I want a staff that is enthusiastic, energetic at practice and know football,” Chunko said. “I plan to work my tail off.”

Monessen is the only Westmoreland County high school still looking for a football coach. That hire could come next week at Monessen’s school board meeting.

Paul Schofield is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Paul by email at pschofield@tribweb.com or via Twitter .

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