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Romero steps down as Squan girls coach

May 3, 2012

“I couldn’t see myself doing this beyond this year if I wasn’t going to be working at Manasquan.” FELIX ROMERO Former Basketball Head Coach

MANASQUAN — After leading the Manasquan girls basketball team to a New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association Tournament of Champions title this past winter, Felix Romero confirmed on Monday morning that he will not return to coach the program next season.

Romero, a resident of Perth Amboy, turned in his resignation to Manasquan Athletic Director Ron Kornegay, who did not wish to comment on the matter.

Romero, who just completed his third season with the Warriors, led the team to a record of 32-2 in 2011-2012, finishing his career at Manasquan with an overall mark of 63-19.

A part-time teacher at Perth Amboy Vo-Tech High School, Romero, 30, admitted the travel from Perth Amboy to Manasquan nearly every day of the week during the season became a taxing task.

The former coach did say he was disappointed a full-time teaching position within the Manasquan School District never became available to him, something he says was discussed with the high school’s administration when he first came on board with the girls basketball program prior to the 2009-2010 season.

“I was hoping to be employed as a teacher at Manasquan full time,” said Romero, who received his teaching degree from Kean University. “I was led to believe that I would be [hired as a teacher] when I was first hired as a coach, but it didn’t pan out for whatever reason. I had to make a decision. I couldn’t see myself doing this beyond this year if I wasn’t going to be working at Manasquan.”

Manasquan Superintendent of Schools Geraldine Margain did not return a phone call for comment by press time.

Romero wanted to thank all those who played for him at Manasquan for their efforts over the past three seasons and wanted those same players to know that his choice to leave was an “extremely difficult” one to make.

“I just want to thank the girls and let them know my decision was a tough one,” he said. “There were various reasons, the main one being that the travel became too much.”

Romero also thanked the members of the Manasquan community who supported the Warriors during a turbulent, yet historic, year in 2011-2012.

“I am grateful for the community’s support,” he added. “I had to make phone calls to a lot of friends that I met while I was coaching at Manasquan, people from the booster club — parents and kids. It is tough. It is like leaving a family.”

Romero says he will now gear his focus toward finding a full-time teaching position and plans on getting back to coaching in the near future.

The members of the championship team lost another coach earlier this year when volunteer assistant Tom Flaherty was removed from his position by Mr. Kornegay midway through the season.

No official reason was ever given for Mr. Flaherty’s removal.

See also Len Bardsley’s column in the print edition of The Coast Star, ‘Romero’s departure not a shock

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