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Varsity Football: Season Outlook

Daniel Clarke
St. Luke’s Football welcomes  new Head Coach Matthew Giannettino to lead the Storm 

Giannettino comes to St. Luke’swith a wealth of coaching experience and is looking forward to continuing to build upon the program's growth that was spearheaded by Noel Thomas.He said: “I am most excited about the opportunity to work with a talented group of players and contribute to the rich legacy of St. Luke’s Football. I am eager to witness the growth of our players, both individually and collectively, and to see the team evolve into a cohesive unit that competes at the highest level. The enthusiasm and potential of this team are truly inspiring.”

Giannettino led St. Luke’s to a 34-21 win against Kingswood Oxford School in his first competitive game and dedicated the victory to the hard work his players and coaching staff had put in during preseason: “Preseason was incredibly productive for us. We focused on building team cohesion, enhancing individual skills, and reinforcing a new culture. Our coaching staff worked closely with players on strength and conditioning, mental conditioning, and installing our new verbiage to ensure they are in peak form for the season. We also emphasized discipline, effort, and good energy to create a positive and supportive team environment while creating strong leaders.”

The Storm is captained by Holden Brown ’24, Graham Findeisen ’24, Mark Dodaj ’24, Tad Fleuette ’24, and Chefren Spodnik ’25. Giannetino expects the quintet to lead by example both on and off the field. “They should inspire their teammates, maintain a high level of dedication and discipline, and act as a bridge between the coaching staff and players. Their communication skills and ability to motivate others will be crucial in keeping the team focused and united during challenging moments.”

Giannettino knows that challenges will arise during the course of the season. In its second game, St. Luke’s suffered a tough loss to Dexter Southfield School. Giannettino believes it is how his players respond in difficult moments that will be the key to success: “Every season presents its unique challenges. We anticipate strong competition from other teams, requiring us to be well-prepared both mentally and physically. Injuries and player fatigue are always concerns, so maintaining our players' health and well-being will be a priority. Moreover, adapting to unexpected situations and making quick strategic decisions during intense matches will test our resilience. Overcoming these challenges will require teamwork, adaptability, and a focused mindset from both players and coaching staff.”

Coach Giannettino hopes to implement his own style of play and philosophies to have a positive impact on the Storm program. His goal is to create and maintain an inclusive environment with a focus on character development: “My coaching philosophy revolves around fostering a positive and inclusive team culture, emphasizing continuous improvement, and instilling a strong work ethic in my players. Our goal this season is not only to win games but also to develop character, resilience, and a deep understanding of the game. We aim to create an environment where players feel motivated to push their limits, learn from setbacks, and celebrate victories together. I want our team to play with passion, intelligence, and unity. I encourage players to showcase their individual skills while understanding the importance of teamwork.”

The Storm is back on the field on Friday, Oct. 6 when it travels to Hamden Hall for a 6 p.m. game under the lights.
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St. Luke’s School is a secular (non-religious), private school in New Canaan, CT for grades 5 through 12 serving over 35 towns in Connecticut and New York. Our exceptional academics and diverse co-educational community foster students’ intellectual and ethical development and prepare them for top colleges. St. Luke’s Center for Leadership builds the commitment to serve and the confidence to lead.