EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

July 14, 2013

Spring Coaches of the Year: Reed, Najem leads tennis squads to historic seasons

The Eagle-Tribune

---- — Boys Lacrosse: Coaching is in Connolly’s blood

Not only was Ryan Connolly taking North Andover from the CAL to MVC but he was doing it with twin daughters (his first two kids), who are just 7 months old now.

“Family came first, school came second and then lacrosse was a close third was the joke,” he said. “I tried to keep that stuff in perspective.”

Connolly, 31, was named MVC Division 1 Coach of the Year after leading the Scarlet Knights to a 15-7 record, an improvement from 10-10 the year before.

Connolly, a history teacher at the school, was in his second year as head coach. Before that, he was as an assistant for six years. He replaced his father, Steve, who founded the program 13 years ago and compiled an impressive 190-85 record while twice being named Eagle-Tribune Coach of the Year.

A 2001 graduate, Connolly captained the team his junior and senior seasons while leading the 2000 team to the Division 2 EMass. championship game. He finished his career with 301 points.

He and his younger brother, Jim, a two-time Eagle-Tribune MVP, followed in their father’s footsteps and starred at UMass.

He was a graduate assistant at Amherst College in 2006 before returning to North Andover.

agateHed:Previous Coaches of the Year

2012: Ryan Richards, Whittier; 2011: Chuck Campobasso, North Reading; 2010: Kevin Lally, Central; 2009: Matt Regan, Pelham; 2008: Steve Connolly, North Andover; 2006-07: Wayne Puglisi, Andover; 2005: Chuck Campobasso, North Reading; 2004: Wayne Puglisi, Andover; 2003: Steve Connolly, North Andover; 2002: Tom Sawyer, Londonderry