In charge of a young Andover Boys Cross Country team this year, Head Coach Patrick Rielly will guide Andover in its attempt to repeat its post-season success of 2014. Rielly was previously the Assistant Coach of the team but stepped into the Head Coach position for 2015 in lieu of previous Head Coach Jeffrey Domina.
Rielly has been a runner for most of his life and has derived enjoyment from both the individual and communal aspects of cross country.
“Cross country is such a wonderful sport because it has both individual and team motivations. As an individual, you’re trying to get the most out of yourself in order to run faster. As a member of a team, you challenge your teammates in practice and in races to push themselves.” said Rielly.
“The individual challenge drew me to the sport as an athlete, but the strong team culture of the sport made me want to coach,” added Rielly.
Rielly has his work cut out for him in replicating Andover’s success last season, when the team placed second at Interschols under the leadership of Domina.
“What [he is] trying to emulate is Coach Domina. Domina was such a great coach. Why wouldn’t you want to emulate that?” said returner Holden Ringer ’17. Nonetheless, Rielly is well prepared for the task. He possesses a wealth of knowledge and experience with the sport, as he ran competitively in both high school and college.
Rielly has enforced the ideal of every runner giving 100 percent effort in the process of rebuilding the team.
In an email to The Phillipian, Noah Belser ’16 wrote, “On our team, hard work is what we strive for every day. We’re all good friends and we like to joke around, but we also know when it’s time to grind. Coach Rielly, as well as all of the other coaches, are great at challenging us to run our best and work our hardest each and every day.”
Also crucial to Rielly’s work as Head Coach are his Assistant Coaches this year. These coaches have made an immense impact on the program. Supplementing the program this year are Assistant Coaches Rachel Hyland, Daniel Schneider and John Tortorello.
With a set of experienced coaches and a few younger runners with varsity potential, Rielly has a strong base for the future. This foundation allows Rielly to push his runners harder and get them in the best possible shape for races.
“One of the things I love about coaching cross country is that moment in practice or in a race when I see that a runner has discovered he’s stronger than he thought he was,” said Rielly. “I hope all of our runners experience that moment sometime this season, and after it happens, I hope that they’ll continue to strive to get the best out of themselves.”