By Chris Place
Ted Fiorentino has been the head coach of the women’s soccer team at Middlesex County College for the past 11 years.
Coach Fiorentino has been around soccer for his entire life.
“I have been around the game of soccer as a player and a coach now for over 45 years. I started playing in grammar school when I was 12 or 13,” he said.
“I played at Brookdale Community College for two years. After that, I played in various indoor and outdoor leagues. I have been playing on the same outdoor team for the last 26 years. I find that being an active player helps me be a better coach,” said Fiorentino.
Fiorentino said that he did not plan on getting into coaching. It happened unexpectedly, but once he got into coaching, he ran with it.
“I got into coaching by accident. My daughter brought home a flyer from school for recreational soccer when she was 4-and-a-half years old, and said she wanted to play. I went to the sign up meeting and was told that the cut off age was 5 years old. My daughter really wanted to play, so I asked if there was anything I could do. They said the only way she could play is if I coached her team. From there, I coached my son’s and daughter’s travel team for 15 years,” he said.
After his kids stopped playing soccer, he made the next step in his coaching career.
“When they were done playing, I got a job coaching the boys soccer team at Bishop Ahr High School for seven years. From there, I went to Middlesex County College, where I just completed my 11th season,” he said.
“My coaching style is pretty simple. Come to practice on time, work hard, be disciplined and good things will happen. We try to keep things fun and loose at practice. When I first started coaching, my approach was a little different. I was more controlling and did not take advice from anyone. I was not getting the results I wanted, so I changed my style a bit to be a more open-minded and more approachable coach,” said Fiorentino.
As far as the future goes, Fiorentino doesn’t see himself coaching anywhere else but MCC. He said that he loves the environment here and wants to be here as long as Middlesex will have him.
“My future coaching plans are to stay at Middlesex for as long as they will have me. I love coaching here. My assistant, Ashley Malone, is a pleasure to work with. She brings a younger and an enthusiastic atmosphere to practices and games. The staff at The College is great. Everyone from the office personnel to the equipment guys have been good to me. We have a new athletic director this year, so I am excited to see what direction he takes the department, and the improvements he has planned,” Fiorentino said.
Fiorentino won’t rule out the opportunity to coach for a Division 2 or Division 1 college.
“As far as coaching at a D2 or D1 four-year college someday, you can never rule that out. It would be the next natural step for me to make. I think any person in any line of work must always be looking to better themselves and move up the ladder,” he said.
Fiorentino still has a lot of unfinished business here at MCC and keeps striving towards his goals here.
“For now, I feel there is still a lot at MCC that I would like to accomplish, and goals that I set for myself that I haven’t met. So hopefully, I am still a part of this college for years to come,” he said.