RALPH FERRIGNO, DIRECTOR OF BOSTON SOCCER ACADEMY, TO BE INDUCTED INTO
THE NEW ENGLAND SOCCER HALL OF FAME
IPSWICH, MA - After a 31 year coaching career in New England, Ralph Ferrigno, Director of the Boston Soccer Academy is to be inducted into the New England Soccer Hall of Fame. The ceremony takes place in East Providence, RI on Sunday, November 20th. The honor recognizes a lengthy coaching career by Ferrigno at all levels of the game in the region: 25 years as a college coach, 21 years in the Olympic Development Program, as well as 30 plus years in club soccer. He coached his first soccer camp in Connecticut in 1980 and has been directing soccer camps in the summer since 1986 throughout New England.
Ferrigno hails from the soccer hotbed of Liverpool, England. He moved to the USA in 1983 to pursue a Master’s Degree at West Chester University in Pennsylvania. Deferring a PhD place in North Carolina studying Sports Psychology, Ferrigno accepted an Assistant Coach at Dartmouth College with the men’s program. This "gap year" led to a 31 year successful coaching career on this side of the pond. Working alongside former Scottish international, Bobby Clark, the two turned an ailing program into a regional powerhouse and their first Ivy League Championship in many years. The Dartmouth years were also formative in Ferrigno's development as a coach as he immersed himself in local youth soccer and the New Hampshire state ODP program. He brought together two local soccer programs - Upper Valley Soccer Club and the Lightning Soccer Youth Soccer Program - to form Upper Valley Lightning. The club still exists to this day in the New England Premiership. Within five years the program had over 1,000 participants between club teams, a regional soccer league, camps, youth clinics, and a Memorial Day Tournament. With the ODP he totally turned around a struggling u16 New Hampshire Girls squad and was immediately elevated to the Region 1 Girls ODP staff. Later, he was a member of the Region 1 staff for the Boys ODP as well.
In 1990 Ferrigno took on the head coaching position at Tufts University and a program that had not experienced a “winning” season in 12 years, and one that had only once made post season in their history. The impact was immediate with a 9-5-1 record and a place in the ECAC playoffs. Subsequently he lead the team to NCAA and ECAC New England Championships in 1994 and 2000 respectively during a 20 year tenure with what is now a perennial NESCAC powerhouse. Off-season, Ferrigno continued to coach extensively in club and ODP soccer. He was Director of Coaching for the FC Greater Bolts, and for the Boston Lightning Club he ran out of Tufts.
After illness in 2003 and 2004 he has concentrated on club soccer on the North Shore of Boston. In 2012 he founded the BSA North Shore club, taking the name from his Boston Soccer Academy Soccer Camp. The club has grown rapidly and has exciting goals for the future. Ferrigno also stayed with the Massachusetts ODP program until 2008, coaching a number of players who made regional and national teams. His 2007 u17 Boys squad went to the National Championships in Dallas, TX.
On hearing of his induction, Ferrigno expressed great honor in the recognition, “Last year one of the greatest players of all time, Eusébio da Silva Ferreira, was inducted, and I can’t believe that I am in that kind of company! There are so many colleagues and opponents on the list of inductees from over the years , it is really quite humbling. I’ve been fortunate to coach so many great players and great people and want to thank all of them for helping to sustain my career to a point that I am able to get this kind of recognition. I plan on having many more coaching years ahead!”
Overall, through his career in New England soccer, Ferrigno has won many tournaments, championships and has claimed five state titles, as well as having garnered a number of Coach of the Year awards from the NSCAA, NEISL, NESCAC and the Eastern Mass Coaches Association. What means the most to Ferrigno is that he has enjoyed coaching literally thousands of boys and girls from beginners through to advanced players and elite players on the national team. His storied time in soccer is perhaps summed up in the words of his favorite soccer team, Liverpool Football Club … “You’ll Never Walk Alone”.
- BOSTON SOCCER ACADEMY
- Office# 617-797-6619