Head coach Shawn Ganow resigned after ending this past soccer season with a 4-12 record on the Boys Varsity Soccer team. Ganow was arguably a successful coach sending his team to the New England Tournament two times in six seasons and was named League Coach of the Year in 2015, the first year they made the New England Tournament. While he was debatably a successful coach, there was no doubt that he was one of the toughest coaches the boys on the team had.
Ben Secor, ‘21, said, “Ganow was very strong and almost stubborn in his strategies for how to plan for games. He ran too many people into the ground and scared them away from the varsity team. Ganow just demands so much from his players.”
The strong centre-back wasn’t the only one with an opinion like this however.
“Was he a bad coach? No,” said Thomas Cho, ‘21, “But was some of the stuff that he did questionable? Yes. He almost expected us to be machines.”
Dylan Chung, ‘23, the new starting, freshman goalkeeper, thought that at times he was worked hard but he appreciated the work ethic that was put in.
“I first saw him at the pre pre season camp on the turf. It was 90 out and he worked me so hard,” he said, “It was a tough day. At first I hated him because of how much I worked but over the season I really enjoyed having him.”
The boys were asked almost every day to put in a huge chunk of, not only their time, but their bodies as well. Many players saying he “ran them into the ground” and others saying that “if you didn’t play right, injuries would linger” due to how hard they were pushed.
“I think he took a lot of our talent away because we’d get to games and we’d be exhausted after ten minutes since we were sore from the practice the day before,” said Ben, “There really were no recovery days. Sundays were our only days off.”
Thomas also said, “The days before games he made us run too much. We were extremely sore and tired for game days.”
Sometimes it would be more mentally challenging rather than physically.
“I remember this one time, the practice before a game, we weren’t really doing the drill properly,” said Thomas, “He just straight up quit. He left [the practice]. He left because we weren’t fulfilling his expectations for the practice. I feel like as the coach, he shouldn’t have left. That just shows the team you’re giving up on them.”
Now, the search is on for a new head coach. The boys almost unanimously don’t want someone that is going to be lax on them but they want someone who knows to find a balance among other things.
“I want a coach who is qualified in the way that they have played soccer before so they know the game,” said Thomas, “I want them to actually be able to do the drill they’re telling us to do. I want them to push us like Ganow did but I hope they don’t run us into the ground.”
Ben said, “I would like to see someone who has a lot of previous coaching experience especially at this level. They’d come in with a lot of experience. As well as have an understanding of what it takes to be good and know how to build a team back up or else this soccer program is just going to fall apart. I’m hoping the new coach will have a good understanding of how to balance that act of how much to get us at our peak performance before games as far as fitness and skill but also not tired and sore beforehand. You really have to find that balance.”
“I don’t think anyone can be quite like Ganow,” said Dylan, “He was the first coach I ever had like him. I just hope that [the new head coach] works us hard and we have another productive season.”
The team however is only expecting or at least knows of a returning nine players as they lose thirteen to graduation.
No matter what though, the team will come back next year as Coach Omaña has said. As the Assistant Coach, he now serves as a sort of interim coach until a new head coach is found to take over.