America's Newspapers
Paper: Dayton Daily News (OH)
Title: RETIRED COACH HONORED - * Former Vandalia Butler baseball coach Bob Costello is inducted into Ohio High School Baseball Hall of Fame
Date: April 2, 1998

When Bob Costello was inducted into the Ohio High School Baseball Coaches Association Hall of Fame recently in Columbus, he was relieved they didn't ask him to sing.

His program biography listed him as being from a Pittsburgh, Pa., suburb. Apparently, word didn't get out that his hometown is Cannonsburg.

Cannonsburg produced some of the world's greatest recording artists - big-name stars such as crooner Perry Como, the Four Coins ( Shangri La ) and Bobby Vinton.

`I think I was the only one in town who couldn't sing,' he said as he reflected on memorable moments from his youth and a distinguished coaching and teaching career.

He retired as the Vandalia Butler High School baseball coach three years ago and was succeeded by Trent Dues.

Costello, the Aviators' head baseball coach for 23 years, spent 32 years teaching physical education and science in Vandalia schools.

His Aviators teams won more than 250 games, made five District I finals and advanced to the regional finals in 1982. Costello was the Miami Valley Coach of the Year in 1980.

Affectionately known as `Cazzie' throughout much of his Butler baseball tenure, Costello said he was tagged with the nickname from former Butler football coach Jack Hollon.

`We played together in a men's adult basketball league and I was always taking a Cazzie Russell-type hook shot,' Costello said. `The kids picked up on the nickname and it stuck.'

Russell was a University of Michigan All-American who starred in the NBA.

Costello, 55, came to Ohio in 1960 and began teaching and coaching at Butler after graduating from the University of Dayton in 1964.

During his coaching years, he also was active in the Miami Valley Coaches Association, serving as both secretary and president, and was named to that organization's Hall of Fame last year.

`I had some memorable years as a coach, mostly because it was always such an honor to work with such great kids,' he said. `And getting the Hall of Fame honors is a career highlight for me.'

He was introduced by a former assistant coach at Butler, John Sferro during the induction and said, `It's always such an honor to be honored by your peers.'

Looking at those golden years in Cannonsburg, Costello said that NFL coach Mike Ditka, from nearby Aliquippa, `played with me on an all-star team and in batting practice he was drilling shots over the scoreboard in (former Pittsburg Pirates home) old Forbes Field.'

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St. Peters goes undefeated

Led by the `Twin Terrors,' St. Peter's sixth-grade girls have concluded a 13-0 basketball season - and a championship in the Catholic Youth Organization St. Celine League.

Providing double-trouble for opponents of the Huber Heights team were fraternal twin sisters Lisa and Monica Graue. Lisa, 5-foot-6, led the team in scoring with an average of 17 points and Monica, an even 5-foot, averaged 10.

St. Peter won a second-round thriller against Incarnation, 24-21, in the last 33 seconds on a three-point shot by Lisa.

The Panthers, coached by Bill Graue, the twin's father, won the regular season league crown, then added the City CYO sixth-grade title by charging from behind to win against St. Helen's, 22-11, in the tourney final at Incarnation.

Going out in appropriate twin style, Lisa and Monica led the scoring in the title showdown with nine points apiece.

Other members of the Panthers included Sara Buchenek, Adrienne Bentley, Sarah Carr, Kelli Lovelace, Regina Vroman and Jenny Walker.

Graue has been coaching St. Peter's girls teams for the past five years.

Copyright, 1998, Cox Ohio Publishing. All rights reserved.

Author: MICKEY ZEZZO DAYTON DAILY NEWS
Section: NEIGHBORS
Page: Z5-10
Copyright, 1998, Cox Ohio Publishing. All rights reserved.