He's in it for the long run

The Record
March 2002
In his fifth year as West Milford's head indoor track coach, Scott Copperman has done more than most coaches have accomplished in two or three times the tenure. But Copperman doesn't want a short, meteoric career.

"I'd like to be one of those coaches who is around for a long time and contribute a lot to the sport," said Copperman, who took the head job after a year of assisting previous coaches Tim Gillen and Larry Harding.

He already has contributed a lot, both with success on the track, leading the Highlanders to their first indoor Passaic County championship, and off the track, shepherding the Highlander Dual Series, now in its third year, to a unique place in the indoor sport.

"I think the Highlander Duals are very important to be able to include the whole team," said Copperman, The Record's North Jersey Coach of the Year.

"You get a kid who is running all the time in the 12th heat of a novice or freshman race and he begins to think he's not important. This series has helped our team grow."

This year's team was second to Delbarton in the Northern Hills meet, and then outscored Clifton, 96-80, for the Passaic championship.

Team leader Matt Trudell had a terrific winter in sprints and hurdles, and all-North Jersey long jumper Brian Leslie had a wonderful first indoor season.

The Highlanders also got great performances from Tim Cedrone, Jon Greenwald, Shawn Gilroy, and Greg Weiss. Their distance team of Dan Binder, Dan Sullivan, Brendan Kenny, and Ryan Kenny took their cross-country success and turned it into track victories.

"We also had some other guys step up and help us," said Copperman, who also coaches the girls team. "Kids like Nick Jurgensen, George Day, Jeff Gunther, and Alex Wu also contributed."

"My assistant coach, Mike Koger, also helped me immensely."

Copyright c. 2002 All rights reserved.
Paul Schwartz
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