Longtime Huntington athletic coach Phil Lowe went out in style, guiding the J. Taylor Finley Middle School girls’ track and field team to an undefeated season spring.
Lowe is retiring from the Blue Devil coaching staff and moving to North Carolina. He was recently honored at the 50th annual Blue Devil senior athletic awards banquet, where Director of Athletics Georgia D. McCarthy and a group of coaches who have worked with the veteran educator presented him with a plaque to commemorate his service to the youth of the community.
Lowe began working at Finley as a guidance counselor on September 1, 1991. He retired from the faculty on June 30, 2015, but he remained on the coaching staff. During his long career he coached middle school football, girls’ and boys’ track and field and girls’ and boys’ basketball. He also worked a stint as the high school’s speed, strength and conditioning coach and in recent years volunteered his time with the high school football program.
A Hamilton College graduate, Lowe earned a BA degree in political science in 1978 and an MA degree in counseling at Hofstra University in 1980. He obtained a Professional Diploma in school district administrator at Dowling College in 2002.
Finley Girls’ Track is Unbeatable
In his final season as a Huntington athletic coach, Phil Lowe’s team achieved perfection. The Falcons topped Elwood (69-39), Oldfield (59-40), East Northport (78-44), Hauppauge (81-22), Kings Park (72-37) and Sachem-Samoset (82-26) to finish with an unblemished 6-0 record.
Lowe was assisted by Woodhull School physical education teacher Carrie Postel. Finley was captained by Analisse Batista, Olivia Conte, Yanira Rivera Ronquillo and Nina Varvatsas.
The 30-athlete strong team was led by seventh grader Megan Donaghy (800m run) and eighth graders Shaneek Shand (55m dash), Kelly Granados (shot put), Lianette Gonzalez-Cortes (shot put), Adrianna LoScalzo (triple jump), Caroline O’Rourke (200m, 55m hurdles, triple jump), Batista (55m hurdles, long jump, triple jump) and Conte (100m dash).
The squad also included seventh graders Gemma Cartwright, Izabela Cuji, Natalie Dunn, Briana Florvil, Lauren Gennarelli, Kendall Germain, Alexis Joseph, Allison Malone, Markella Markotsis, Renee McKean, Maryuri Nunez Gomez, Jillian Panos, Theresa Rivera and Maria Sabatino. In addition to the top performers and captains, eighth grade team members included Kianna Criscuola, Christina Drummings, Finley Dunn, Brianna Halbeisen, Alexis Kaloudis and Chloe Schiman.
“Our eighth graders provided exceptional leadership and created great team spirit,” Lowe said. “Our young seventh graders have great potential. The returning seventh graders should provide solid leadership for Finley girls’ track next spring.”