Playoff streak ends for veteran MPH boys soccer coach Don Ridall
Don Ridall has coached boys soccer at Manlius Pebble Hill since 1976.
After a 1-8-1 record his rookie season of 1976, the Trojans program made it to 38 consecutive sectional tournaments.
Until this year.
Ridall’s team went 4-9-2 and failed to make the Class C field because teams need to win 40 percent of their matches overall or in league play to qualify.
“In some ways it’s cool that we were able to maintain that level of success,” Ridall said at Sunday’s sectional seeding meeting. His teams have won six sectional championships and state Class D titles in 2000 and 2001.
The private school in DeWitt lost a number of students after weathering financial difficulties in the spring, and the transition had an impact on the soccer program. Ridall said he lost about a half dozen players who would likely have been starters this fall. The coach wasn’t making excuses, he said.
“It’s not like we were horrible,” said Ridall, whose teams have won more than 550 matches, second in Section III only to Mount Markham’s Charlie Engle.
Ridall said the Trojans will be back next year.
“We only have four seniors, so things look good,” he said.