Gene Ventriglia ’67 announces retirement as New Paltz’s Head Men’s Soccer Coach

Gene_Ventriglia11Gene Ventriglia ’67, one of the most successful student-athletes in SUNY New Paltz history, will retire from his position as the Hawks’ head men’s soccer coach.

Ventriglia closes his head coaching career with a 539-252-54 record spanning more than 40 years as a coach at the high school and college levels in the Hudson Valley. The Hawks helped Ventriglia notch his 300th and final win as a collegiate coach in a 2-1 victory over Hunter College on Oct. 14, 2015.

Ventriglia had been a legend of New Paltz athletics long before his 2010 appointment as head coach of the men’s soccer program. He was a member of the 1965 men’s soccer team that won an NCAA regional title and a SUNYAC title. His 36 goals scored that year are believed to be the all-time record for men’s soccer at the College.

Ventriglia gained three All-America citations and was named Soccer Magazine’s Player of the Year as a senior. He went on to represent his country at the 1967 Pan American Games and the 1968 Olympic Games. Ventriglia was inducted into the New Paltz Athletics Hall of Fame in 1982.

After 16 seasons spent coaching at various regional high schools and 24 years as the head coach of women’s soccer at Army West Point, Ventriglia came back home to coach the Hawks.

“Ever since the completion of my playing career as a Hawk, I had always hoped to finish my coaching career at the institution that truly shaped my life,” Ventriglia said. “Coming back to New Paltz was the achievement of that dream. I will forever cherish my five seasons here as the head coach of the sport I love. I only hope I have challenged my players to be all they can be and made a little difference in their overall development as young adults.”

NPMSoccer_A373New Paltz made great strides under Ventriglia’s leadership. His most successful season came in 2012, when he led the men’s team to the State University of New York Athletic Conference (SUNYAC) Tournament semifinals behind 11 wins, the most by a New Paltz head men’s soccer coach since 2004.

“It is not very often that a decorated former student-athlete has the opportunity to serve as a coach at their alma mater where they had a lot of success as a student-athlete,” said Director of Athletics, Wellness & Recreation Stuart Robinson. “Gene’s passion, pride and commitment to student-athletes have made the past five years not only a personal fulfillment for him and his student-athletes, but it also helped us reconnect to the history of New Paltz. To understand the impact of this circle for Gene is to understand and to appreciate a man who came from very humble beginnings and flourished here as a student before coming back to New Paltz to show the meanings of his journey. I wish him and Donna nothing but the best as they get to do things for themselves and their family. Gene will always hold a very special place in New Paltz Athletics.”