Varsity girls’ soccer coach resigns; search for a replacement begins

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Photo Credit: Tess Rooney

Varsity girls’ soccer coach, Leah Jerome (not pictured), will not be returning next season.

by Kate Casey, Staff Writer

The varsity girls’ soccer coach will not be returning next season, catalyzing a search for a replacement.

The former coach, Leah Jerome, finalized her resignation in December with athletic director Frank Violante.

I thought Leah was a great coach, and she brought a lot to the game. She knows the sport. She was extremely passionate about it”

— Coach Fox

“I think Leah came in and had a very difficult act to follow,” Violante said. “I think she worked very hard at it. She gave her all to try and do the best possible job as a coach.”

Violante explained that former coach Tracy Trobiano, who had many strong teams during her 20 seasons, was close with her players. When Trobiano retired from Glen Rock last year, Jerome picked up the reins with many of Trobiano’s former players, some of whom had trained with Trobiano for years.

Jerome graduated from Glen Rock in 2003, when she led her team to the State Group 1 championship under Trobiano’s coaching. Jerome was chosen as the Athlete of the Year by The Record for her contributions to the program.

Jerome then played at Fordham University, where she was named Academic All-American three of four years, and she was the most valuable player her senior year. She received the Athlete of the Year award from Fordham during her 2006-07 year, according to an article by Jim Jones.

Her first coaching experience was at St. Mary’s in Rutherford. She later became the JV coach at Pascack Valley and then coached at Cresskill High School. This was her first season coaching at Glen Rock.

Christopher Fox, JV girls’ soccer coach and Glen Rock Physical Education teacher, expressed his respect for Jerome’s soccer knowledge.

“I thought Leah was a great coach, and she brought a lot to the game,” he said. “She knows the sport. She was extremely passionate about it.”

As of publication, a new coach has not been chosen. Several people have applied and are being interviewed. The final decision will be made by early spring, according to Violante.

Some students have expressed their hopes that Fox step in to fill the varsity position.

“I want Fox, I think he is a good coach,” Elizabeth Hoyt, a freshman JV player, said.

Coach Fox has been offered the position in the past, but he has stuck to JV.

“I have a big family at home,” Fox said. “That takes up a lot of time and coaching a varsity sport, which I did for ten years for wrestling, I just didn’t really see much of my family.”

Despite Jerome’s short tenure, she did garner accomplishments during the season, according to Violante.

“She gave her all to try and do the best possible job as a coach,” he said. “We were successful. We won a league championship, and we advanced in the sectionals.”

Jerome brought her team to states, but the team lost in the second round, 2-0, against River Dell.

According to senior and team captain Julia Kelly, Jerome had a passion for the sport and the high school at which she she played.

“I thought she had a good intentions for the program and the future,” Kelly said. “She really loved Glen Rock soccer.” 

Jerome was contacted for a statement but declined to comment.