Pine-Richland hires Welty as boys lacrosse coach
The Pine-Richland boys lacrosse team will have a new leader after hiring Kevin Welty to take over as coach.
Welty, who spent the last four seasons as an assistant for the Bethel Park boys, won the 2017 WPIAL Assistant Coach of the Year award. Now, he’ll take over a Rams program he said is one of the best in Western Pennsylvania.
“Pine-Richland is definitely a top program, year-in and year-out,” Welty said. “Throughout the interview process, the emphasis is on the program as a whole. It’s about the kids, how good they are and how awesome of a coaching staff there is. The board has been great.
“I can’t say enough good things about the Bethel community. It was awesome being there. And I’ve just felt so welcomed in by the Pine community as well. They’re great. I’ve got people I don’t even know reaching out to me to congratulate me. It’s awesome.”
Welty will succeed Chip Young with the Rams. Young accumulated 39 wins from 2015-17 and led the team to three consecutive WPIAL playoff appearances.
Welty said he hopes to build off Young’s success.
“This past season, Pine-Richland was the team to beat. We lost to Peters in the quarterfinals of the playoffs, and that was a big upset. So there’s some unfinished business there,” Welty said.
“Coach Young did a great job of building the culture up and creating an expectation of being a winning program. I’m obviously excited about it. There really isn’t a better program that you can walk in to in Western Pa., in my opinion.”
In taking the job, the former Chartiers Valley player and Seton Hill three-year letterman is emphasizing continuity between his predecessor’s coaching staff and his own. With that in mind, Welty will retain offensive coordinator Tyler Digby, as well as defensive coordinator Dave Offner and assistant coach Patrick Donnelly.
“The word continuity is a great word to use. I’m not going to come in and try to install a new offense or rock the boat too much,” Welty said.
“But at the same time, you have to be yourself as a coach. The way I coach is very personnel-related, so I’m trying to help get their skill level better every single day and I think that’s where we’ll see the incremental changes.”
Kevin Lohman is a freelance writer.