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Franklin - Local Town Pages

Fall Sports Season at FHS Was Newsworthy Another Dalton Award; A.D. To Retire; & Teams Dominate

Staff Sports Writer
The fall sports season at Franklin High was dynamic — not only from a competitive standpoint, but also from its breaking news.
First, Tom Angelo, the school’s highly successful 6-year athletic director announced he’ll retire on June 30. Then came the exclamation point on the Panthers’ athletic excellence. The school captured its third straight Dalton Award. 
As the fall edged closer to November’s state tourneys, Franklin’s eight varsity squads wasted no time compiling some amazing win-loss records that led to four Kelly-Rex Division crowns.
Here are the details:
The Dalton trophy, presented by The Boston Globe, goes to a high school that produces the top winning percentage in all varsity sports. Franklin captured the Division 1 honor for the 2020-21 school year by finishing with 77%. Wellesley was second at 69% and Bridgewater-Raynham was third, at 67%. The Panthers’ overall regular-season varsity record was 180-52-3.
Franklin not only has won the Dalton Award three times in a row, but it also has captured the trophy five times in the last nine years.
“The award confirms that our coaches and student-athletes are incredible,’’ said AD Angelo. “And, it confirms that we’re doing things in athletics the right way, like setting high standards and maintaining the proper priorities. Franklin’s success begins with our coaches, and we’re fortunate to have very little turnover. Our staff coaches for all the right reasons. They’re educators who teach life lessons, and they love to practice and compete. Our sub-varsity coaches also deserve praise.
“We also hold our varsity captains to a higher standard. We expect them to be extensions of the coaching staff. They attend meetings and conferences throughout the year that emphasize the importance of leadership. Athletes start competing in the town’s youth program early on.’’ 
Angelo noted, “We get great support from the school administration, parents, the Department of Public Works, the Recreation Department, and booster clubs,’’ he said. “We also offer a strength and conditioning program that keeps kids well-conditioned. Our facilities are also top-notch.’’ Angelo nodded specifically that Sue Jacobson, who manages the athletic office, and Jen Edmunds, the athletic trainer, “add to our success by working diligently behind the scenes.”
The late Ernie Dalton, the Globe’s high school sports editor from 1938 to 1970, would no doubt be proud of the Panthers’ achievements.
The 60-year-old Angelo may be retiring, but he expects to stay active.
“I’d like to stay involved with unified sports and the Special Olympics,’’ he said. “And, I’d love to coach freshman baseball. Volunteer work is also something I’d like to do.’’
The New Jersey native, who played varsity baseball at New Mexico State University where he earned his bachelor’s and has a master’s from Endicott College, served as athletic director at Plymouth North and Somerset-Berkley. At Tabor Academy, where he coached varsity baseball, his 2014 squad won the New England Prep School championship.
The high caliber leader for Franklin High knows his emotions will run high in June. “It’s been an honor to work with a great coaching staff and many excellent co-workers,’’ he said. “There’s been so many great student-athletes. They come and they go. Josh Hanna has been a wonderful principal, and Sara Ahearn is a great superintendent. I’ll really miss the day-to-day interactions with the kids.’’
• FIELD HOCKEY — Coach Michelle Hess guided her squad to a 17-1 regular season record and the Kelly-Rex Division title. Before the tourney, which was continuing at Local Town Pages deadline, the Panthers were ranked No. 4 in Division 1. Tourney wins include a 6-0 decision over Beverly, a 2-0 victory over Central Catholic and a 4-1 win over against Winchester. 
• VOLLEYBALL — In her second year on the job, coach Samantha Redmond directed her forces to a 15-1 regular season record that enabled the Panthers to share the Kelly-Rex crown with King Philip. The team was ranked No. 1 in Division 1. Playoff wins included 3-0 triumphs over Lynn Classical, Shrewsbury and Barnstable, with the tourney continuing at Local Town Pages deadline. 
• GIRLS SOCCER — Interim coach Jodi Klein guided the Panthers to a 13-1-2 regular season record and the Kelly-Rex championship. They were ranked No. 4 in Division 1. The girls opened the tourney with a 1-0 overtime win over Reading but lost, 2-0, to Brookline in the second round. 
• FOOTBALL — Angelo has high praise for coach Ian Bain who has led his Panthers to a 9-0 record at Local Town Pages deadline. They were ranked No. 1 in Division 1. Playoff wins included a 42-6 decision over Braintree and a 24-7 triumph over Methuen. 
• BOYS SOCCER — Coach Fran Bositis led his Panthers to a 10-4-4 record and a No. 30 rank in Division 1. The season was the 51st for Bositis who compiled his 500th victory against King Philip. Franklin defeated Malden, 5-0 in the tourney then bowed out after a 2-1 loss to Framingham. 
• GOLF — First-year coach Bob Pingeton settled in nicely, helping his squad compile a 9-5 record that led to a third-place finish in the Hockomock League Tournament and a sixth-place finish in the sectional. Pingeton is also girls’ varsity tennis coach and varsity assistant in girls’ basketball.
• CROSS-COUNTRY — The girls’ team, coached by Paul Trovoto, finished 5-0 and won the Kelly-Rex crown. The squad competed in the Hockomock Championships and finished second behind Oliver Ames. The boys, coached by Nick Bailey, finished at 2-3 for the regular season and were sixth in the Hockomock Championships. At the division meet, the girls finished ninth as sophomore Alex Batla took sixth place. The boys finished 24th.