The Post-Journal

Jim Foti's Gridders End Successful Year

Product of Jamestown Coaches Wheeling Catholic Team,
Winning Championship First Time in History


Wheeling, W. Va - When Central Catholic High School induced James (Jimmy) Foti, former John Carroll lineman from Jamestown, N. Y., to assume direction of its athletic program three years ago the local school officials made one of the wisest decisions in the history of the Irish school.

For Foti, who came to Wheeling from Erie, Pa., for the football season of 1941, has just completed the most successful coaching year of any predecessor in the annals of the Catholic institution. His Maroons swept their first nine games and annexed the first Greater City championship in the history of the five-school struggle for supremacy.

Foti's eleven clinched the city crown and brought its winning streak to nine games when it nosed out Wheeling High, 7-6. Earlier the Irish had turned back Linsly Institute, Triadelphia and Warwood Highs in the city round-robin competition. The first defeat of the regular season was administered by Wellsburg. W. Va., High, 13-0, in the next start and on Thanksgiving day, in the Steubenville "Steel Bowl" game, a post-season setback was incurred by the meager margin of 20-19, when Rochester, Pa., High was met.

When Foti came to Central Catholic he assumed charge of a football squad which had won one game in nine starts the previous year and over a three year span had salvaged only seven victories out of 27 starts. Foti's Maroons won five, lost four and tied one in 1941, took six and lost four in 1942 and for three seasons show 20 wins, 10 defeats and a tie in tough Ohio Valley competition.

In addition to his success with his current football teams, the Central Catholic mentor in two years on the basketball floor has capped excellent campaigns by winning the West Virginia Catholic High school tournament two times running. Foti served his athletic apprenticeship as a prep performer on the Jamestown, N. Y., High school team and from there went to Cleveland to win a varsity berth on the John Carroll University eleven. He was graduated from John Carroll.

During the past summer Coach Foti was married to a Wheeling girl, Miss Mary Lepore, and married life appears to have agreed with the smiling mentor.

The additional financial assistance of the community is critical to the success of the Chautauqua Sports Hall of Fame.
We gratefully acknowledge these individuals and organizations for their generous support.