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Joe Cutrona

Football ∙ Freedom

 

 

 

 

Most former coaches talk about their winning teams, but Joe Cutrona thinks his greatest claim to fame was introducing Beaver County to the one handed push shot in basketball during his playing days. He did that in 1931 while playing for Freedom High School. Up to that time, the standard shooting style was the two handed set shot. Coach Walter Braden of Freedom High taught Joe the new one handed push shot, and the agile Joe made good use of the new style by sinking seven out of ten attempts in the game against Midland. Joe also starred in football, baseball, and track. He played quarterback at Freedom High and set a one game scoring record for a Beaver County player by chalking up 43 points in a 1930 game against Shenango. He led the county in football scoring that year with 86 points and also led his section in basketball scoring. Joe played quarterback on the 1933 and 1934 Duquesne University football teams that compiled a 17-3 record and whipped Miami, 34-7, in the 1934 Festival of Palms (now called the Orange Bowl). Joe’s 29 year coaching career started in 1935 at St Veronica High School in Ambridge, where his first team won the district Catholic high school football title and his next team tied for the honor. After eight years at St Veronica, Joe was head football coach at North Catholic High School in Pittsburgh for two seasons, winning the PCIAA state title in 1943. He then coached football, basketball, and baseball at Monaca High School from 1954 to 1963, spending most of his time as head baseball coach. Joe was president of the Leetsdale Little League for 25 years and served on its Board of Directors.