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Ellwood City hires Dibble as boys basketball coach | Sports

A familiar face is returning to varsity basketball coaching in Lawrence County.

This time, on the boys side.

Scott Dibble, who coached the New Castle High girls from 2012-2013 through the 2014-2015 season, was hired as the Ellwood City Lincoln High boys basketball coach. It marks the first varsity boys basketball coaching job for Dibble, who is 59.

Dibble is taking over for Steve Antuono, who resigned in mid-March. Dibble has spent the last two years working with the Wolverines’ seventh- and eighth-grade boys basketball team, as well as a year with the Ellwood City junior high girls.

Dibble, who is a retired sales rep, did serve as a men’s basketball assistant coach at Community College of Butler County.

“Steve approached me and said you have to do it, you have to do it. So I applied for the job,” Dibble said of taking over as the coach. “He was supportive of me and I’m excited. It’s a great district and community.

“Basketball is basketball. Girls or guys. The game is the same.”

Ellwood City hired Dibble by a unanimous 9-0 vote. The contract is set for three years.

“He’s been with us for a while now. He’s been at some different schools,” Ellwood City athletic director Curt Agostinelli said. “He’s won some WPIAL titles and he’s been at some private schools; he’s a coach.

“He has a lot of enthusiasm. I wanted to coach basketball. Scott’s been with me for a couple of years and that carries a lot of weight.”

Agostinelli said the candidate list was as high as seven for the job.

“It was a decent group. We narrowed it down to the three best,” Agostinelli said. “Then you go from there. I thought all three we brought in and the ones that weren’t brought in were good candidates.

“Scott had experience and he’s been a head coach.”

Dibble was 18-48 as the Lady ‘Canes’ coach. His teams did not reach the postseason. But, he is no stranger to postseason success.

He won two PIAA Class 2A championships during a 12-year tenure at Villa Maria Academy in Erie and reached the PIAA finals four times.

Dibble compiled an overall record of 267-55 with the Lady Victors and captured back-to-back PIAA titles in 2009 and 2010. He was the PIAA Coach of the Year in 2010. Villa Maria won a third championship in 2011, but Dibble resigned before the state playoffs began.

Bishop Canevin was Dibble’s latest stop. He served as the head girls basketball coach for two years and an additional two seasons as an assistant coach before resigning in 2019. The Lady Crusaders claimed the WPIAL Class 3A title and was the PIAA runner-up in 2018 under Dibble’s direction.

Ellwood City’s boys basketball team captured the program’s first WPIAL crown in the 2020-2021 season, and the program’s first section championship this past season.

“It’s really in a good position,” Dibble said of the Wolverines’ boys program. “We have to continue what we’ve been doing.

“We’re going to put a strong skill summer together and get after it. I really think the program is going in the right direction. I’ve been there on the girls side; I’ve been to about eight or nine state title games. I know what it takes to win and I’m super excited.”

Ellwood City lost nine players to graduation, including such talent as Steve Antuono, Alexander Roth and Milo Sesti.

“I think (Coach) Steve (Antuono) did a great job. The cupboard is not bare,” Dibble said. “They lost a great senior class, but the program is in great hands.

“There’s a lot of interest in the program. Once we get in there and see what we can do, I feel confident. They have some players. I think we’ll be just fine.”

Dibble said he plans to be busy over the next several days and weeks regarding the team.

“I haven’t met with the team yet, but my phone has been blowing up,” he said.

“Kids have reached out and (Ellwood City girls basketball coach) Dena Noble has reached out. A lot of people have been very supportive.”

The coaching staff may look a bit different next season.

“Ricky Roth will be back,” Dibble said. “(Former varsity assistant) Chris Weisz is going to run the elementary program. I have a few spots to fill.”


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