EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

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November 14, 2012

Sullivan admits he's leaning towards retirement

Sullivan admits he's leaning towards retirement

LAWRENCE — Andover volleyball coach George Sullivan wasn’t about to commit to any future plans just moments after his team’s season ended.

But the veteran head man admitted that last night may have been his final game on the Golden Warriors’ bench.

“I thinking I’ll probably retire,” said the 71-year-old Sullivan. “Probably. It’s a tough time to be asking about it, right after a loss. But I am leaning towards (retiring).”

After 22 years and more than 400 victories, it very well may well have been the end of an era at Andover High as the Golden Warriors fell to Newton North 25-19, 25-22, 25-20 last night, in what could have been Sullivan’s last game as coach.

“I always make fun of my wife about having trouble making decisions,” said Sullivan. “I’ve been retiring for about eight years now. My athletic director (Don Doucette) said not to make the decision after this game.”

But, following the loss, his players had a feeling what their coach’s decision may be.

“I think he just might (retire),” said senior Sarah Weimer. “He’s been talking about it for a few years. But he has really bonded with out senior class, so I could see him leaving after this season.”

If Sullivan is to retire, it would end a tenure that started when he took over the girls program in 1991.

“I’m not the first girls volleyball coach, I’m just the loudmouth,” joked the always comical Sullivan. “It’s a very tough decision because I love working with the kids and I love the sport.”

In his 22 years as Golden Warriors girls coach, he has compiled a record of 419-157. In 21 years as boys volleyball coach, Sullivan had a 285-144 record before retiring before the 2010 season. He was inducted into the Massachusetts Girls Volleyball Coaches Hall of Fame in 2009.

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