Stepping down: Kevin Carriero
is in his final month as the track and field coach at Lancaster, where he has worked for close to half a century.
Carriero, 71, took the varsity job at the age of 22 after one season in charge of the JV program. He told AD Brian Wild, who had Carriero as a physical education teacher, two years ago that he expected 2019 to be his finale.
"He's going to be a huge hole to fill not just in track and field but as one of our main coaches," Wild said. "I'm just trying out of respect to enjoy the last season. I just want to make it a memorable last season for him."
Carriero, who retired from teaching in 1999 while battling pancreatic cancer, and his assistants have coached 38 state indoor or outdoor champions.
"We are losing the godfather of Section 6 track," said University at Buffalo assistant and former Sweet Home and Canisius High coach Brian Lombardo. "When he told me last year, I said 'Why not hold on for 50 (years)?' That may have been selfish of me wanting to see him hang on. He really has been a role model for every section chairman and coach. You hate to see him go, but I don't think anyone else deserves a break more than him."
Said Carriero: "I just decided two years ago that's when I'm going. You can't do this forever. Head coaching takes on mentally a great deal of responsibility and a lot of work. I'm kind of a 19th-century guy. I don't do things off a computer or internet. I hand print everything. ... At some point, you reach that point where it's time for a change. I certainly haven't felt any pressure from administration."
Following up: Thursday's blog mentioned the softball perfect game in which Mahopac sophomore Shannon Becker. It's believed to be the first seven-inning perfect game in NYSPHSA history in which a pitcher fanned all 21 batters.
It turns out that there was very nearly a similar performance recently. Hayley Papp of LeRoy struck out 21 batters on her way to a one-hitter against York.
All-state update: Barring major breaking news, I'm going to spend the weekend finishing off the first draft of the all-state team in girls basketball. Depending upon how quickly I'm able to incorporate adjustments and resolve questions, we should be announcing the team here May 17 or 21.