Longtime Indians hockey coach retires

After more than three decades behind the bench, Dartmouth High hockey coach Mike Cappello is retiring, the school’s athletics department announced last week.

“The past 31 years have been very special to me, as it’s been both a privilege and an honor to coach boys ice hockey at Dartmouth High School,” Cappello said in a statement. “I loved working with every student-athlete, coach, staff member, administrator and family that was involved in the Dartmouth High School hockey family.”

Capello has served as the school district’s adaptive physical education teacher since 1991 and became the head coach of the hockey program 24 years ago.

During his tenure at Dartmouth High, Cappello has coached the Indians to 239 wins, as well as numerous league championships and state tournament berths. He was also inducted into the Massachusetts State High School Coaches Hall of Fame in 2019.

In addition to coaching hockey, Cappello has been heavily involved with the school district’s unified sports program, including the launch of its annual Special Olympics.

Cappello credited his wife Leigh Anne and her unwavering support for keeping him going so long.

“Any type of success I’ve had is a direct result of her love and support,” he said.

Athletics Director Andrew Crisafulli praised Cappello for his work ethic, loyalty, and longevity behind the Indians’ bench.

“Mike embodied everything that’s great in high school athletics and did so with such respect and empathy,” he said. “Personally, I will miss his leadership, professionalism and friendship — he’s a Hall of Fame coach, educator and human being.”

According to the high school’s athletics department, a search is underway to find Cappello’s replacement.

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