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Ohio staff has a local flavor

Beaver Local’s Mike McKenzie will lead the Ohio All-Stars in the OVAC All-Star Game on July 17th at Wheeling Island Stadium. (Photo by Michael Burich)

When Beaver Local head coach Mike McKenzie was extended the invitation to coach the Ohio squad in the annual OVAC Rudy Mumley All-Star Football Game, he first had to make sure his coaching staff was on board to come along, too.

It didn’t take long for the Beavers’ staff to agree.

“It’ll be a fun experience for us,” McKenzie said. “We’re a very close group. We hang out with each other away from football and it’s a fun group of guys to be around. I feel fortunate to have that kind of staff.”

McKenzie and his staff will formally meet their players on Sunday, July 17 when camp opens at Wheeling University in preparation for the game, which is slated for Saturday, July 23 at Wheeling Island Stadium.

The complete coaching staff includes: Shane O’Brien, Derrick Stickles, Nick Sesonsky, Josh Weese and Aaron West.

Here’s a capsule look at the Ohio coaching staff:

MIKE MCKENZIE — This Beaver Local head coach has an impressive resume in a 28-year coaching career.

McKenzie, who has been with the Beavers for five seasons, has been a head coach for 17 seasons with stops at Edison, Indian Valley and Swanton High Schools. He was an assistant at Weir, Clyde and Hopewell-Louden.

Along with his football coaching duties, he’s also spent time coaching track, softball, baseball and basketball.

The 1989 Edison North graduate, who went on to Heidelburg, was honored by District 9 as a coach of the year and he was part of the 1995 state championship coaching staff at Clyde.

Mike and his wife, Nicole, have two sons — Michael and Nicolas.

SHANE O’BRIEN — This former Edison head coach joined the Beavers staff prior to the 2021 campaign.

All told, O’Brien has eight years of coaching experience. He was the Wildcats head coach from 2018-20 and was an assistant for four seasons prior to that.

Along with his football experience, O’Brien has coached wrestling and track.

The 2012 Edison graduate graduated from West Liberty in 2015.

DERRICK STICKLES — This former OVAC All-Star player for West Virginia, has been working with McKenzie at Beaver for the last five seasons.

All told, Stickles — a former Oak Glen and West Liberty standout — has 14 years of coaching experience. He was the head football and wrestling coach at Edison. He’s also worked as an assistant at Edison and Oak Glen prior to joining the Beavers.

Stickles is also a highly regarded wrestling official having been named OVAC Official of the Year.

Derrick and his wife, Tonya, have five children (Maisy, Marlee, Landon, Blaine and Brandon) and one grandson, Joshua

NICK SESONSKY — This Beaver assistant cut his coaching teeth under McKenzie five seasons ago and has remained on the staff since.

Sesonsky also handles the strength and conditioning program.

Sesonsky is a graduate of Poland High School and Youngstown State University.

JOSH WEESE — Weese was a standout player at Beaver Local and has returned to join the coaching staff.

He’s been with the Beavers for six seasons, but his tenure included a stint from 2007-11 and then last season with McKenzie. Weese has additional coaching experience in baseball and basketball.

Weese has a degree from Westminster College.

Josh and his wife, Kara, have three children — Easton, Maci and Jordyn Yanni.

AARON WEST — This current assistant has worked with McKenzie for his entire tenure with the Beavers.

West, all told, owns 15 years of football-coaching experience. He has spent 12 years as an assistant. he also coached at Leetonia. Along with football, he coached boys and girls basketball.

West is a Leetonia High School graduate and actually was on the Ohio staff previously for the OVAC Game.

Aaron and his wife, Arianne, have three children Austin, Noah and Aubre.

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