NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y. - It’s going to be a familiar face in a familiar place at Iona Prep, with a native son returning home to replace longtime coach Vic Quirolo on the sideline as head football coach.
On Monday, the high school announced that former Gaels quarterback Joe Spagnolo, a 1998 graduate from Iona Prep, would be succeeding Quirolo, who stepped down last month after 13 years as the head football coach.
The new coach, who has been an assistant at powerhouse Archbishop Stepinac in White Plains, said he got chills when he returned to New Rochelle for an interview at his alma mater.
“I’m excited to be back. It’s been a long time,” he noted. “I’m just thrilled to about the opportunity.”
Spagnolo, 36, has served as offensive coordinator at Archbishop Stepinac for a decade, including an undefeated regular season last year, culminating in a loss in the Catholic High School Athletic Association (CHSAA) state final. He will look to turn around an Iona team that stumbled to a 2-7 record in 2015.
Iona Prep Athletic Director Bernard Mahoney expressed excitement at the return of one of the program’s finest offensive leaders.
“Joe brings passion, energy and an organizational skill set that we find very attractive,” he said. “We’ve seen the success that he’s been a part of at Stepinac, and his familiarity with us and the league played a big role in his hiring.”
A former Eastchester Blue Devil standout - Spagnolo said he is prepared to put his student-athletes in the best position to succeed both on and off the field.
“The biggest thing in high school sports is putting kids in the right position to be successful,” he said. “The athletic and academic competition I faced as a student prepared (me) well. I would not have been as prepared for college had I not gone to Iona Prep.”
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