An Inside Look at Joey Pusateri


Sean Nolan, Print

The North Hills Student Section has returned to being the dominant force it was years ago.  Combining the leadership of seniors Joey Pusateri, Ryan Mullen, Alex Brown, Noah Marshalek, and Tom Brown with the pure enthusiasm for North Hills has helped bring the Student Section back to the top.  Through fun themes and weekly videos recorded and edited by Joey, “The Tribe” has been able to climb to the top of the rankings week after week.  I had the opportunity to sit down with Joey and ask him about the Student Section.


Why did you want to lead the student section your senior year?

I’d say it’s because my brother led it his senior year and I was part of that and always with him and his friends.  I was figuring out what they did so it was kind of like once my senior year came around it was my show to run pretty much.  We got a couple of guys together and it ended up turning out pretty good I guess.


When did you discover your passion for filmmaking?

I learned how to do it in tenth grade just from taking TV 1 but I actually just started getting into it this past summer.  I started getting actually interested in it and then figuring out that’s what I want to go to school for and so this past summer I just watched a lot of videos, learned how to do a lot, and just carried it into the student section.


What was your thought process when you decided to make weekly videos of the student section?

I actually need a portfolio for college so it is combined with enjoying it and wanting to do it every week and I need to make certain stuff so I can put it in my portfolio to turn it into the colleges that I want to get into.  It was kind of like a win-win situation.


What is your video editing process?

I have two or three cameras set up around the stadium.  I have one, Amberly [Valeriano] has one, and then sometimes we use a GoPro.  After we film everything, I upload all of the videos and watch them to see what I have, hopefully I get big plays of the game and big parts of the student section whenever they’re rowdy, and I use Adobe Premiere to pretty much cut it all together.  I put music to it, just whatever music I feel is right for the week.  I take suggestions too.  It all comes together.  Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday I gotta work my butt off to do it though.


Did this year’s student section exceed your expectations?

Yes.  I would definitely say that it did everything to exceed expectations with the help of a lot of people.  I didn’t expect this many people to show up for the games so I think everyone pretty much did their part in making this year successful.  Anything from the senior helping out to the freshman actually coming to the games this year to the teachers helping us doing fun things.  That was huge.  Everything helped this year and we definitely are doing better than we expected.


What are your plans with utilizing these talents after high school?

I plan on going to college for film and photography.  I just plan on getting better at editing these types of videos.  Maybe make it into music videos, something along those lines, and making a career out of it pretty much.


With the season winding down, do you have any advice to future leaders on how to maintain the prominence of the student section?

I would definitely say you need more than one person.  I think there’s five of us that do it right now.  We have a group message and we talk in it all day long and you’re not always going to agree on the ideas, but you just gotta settle with one and it’ll probably work out if everyone’s ideas come together.  Just be open-minded to other people’s ideas.  You’ll see we have this ball drop coming for the powder toss and none of us would’ve thought of that.  We had to go to outside places to think of something like that.  Just listen to other people’s opinions.  Hear them out.


Do you plan on ending this after football season or is this going to extend into basketball?

This is gonna go into basketball.  We don’t know how often because sometimes people don’t show up to the weekday games.  But if we’re playing like Pine Richland on a weekday game there will probably be a student section and so we’re gonna try to do themes.  We’re gonna get creative in a different type of way because obviously we can’t do powder tosses and what not inside the gym and you can’t do the same things you do in football.  So it’s definitely going to be a good time so show up on probably the Friday games and some of the weekday games and you’ll just have to wait and see.  We have some good things planned because in the basketball games the player’s can actually hear you unlike the football games.  So you can actually kinda make an effect on the game a little bit so we’ll just have to wait and see.


Thanks to Joey and the rest of the seniors in charge, North Hills has been able to get more people involved in the Friday Night Lights.  It’ll be exciting to see what themes “The Tribe” pulls out for basketball season.  Win or lose, North Hills has the #1 student section in the WPIAL.