Longtime baseball coach Steve DeCaro will not return to the Mattituck High School baseball field this season.
Mr. DeCaro, who was placed on administrative leave last fall, will be replaced by longtime assistant coach Gene Rochler of Wading River.
The spring sports season officially begins Monday. Mr. Rochler was formally approved as the varsity coach by the Board of Education in January. Former Mattituck baseball player Tom Ascher (Class of 2011) was approved as varsity assistant coach. He also serves as an assistant coach on the varsity basketball team.
The school board had approved Mr. DeCaro for the varsity position in July, before the turmoil that led to his being placed on administrative leave in October for unspecified reasons. All coaching positions are approved on a year-to-year basis.
Mr. DeCaro, who had also been the district’s physics teacher, declined comment.
Roughly 200 community members attended a school board meeting in October to express frustration about Mr. DeCaro’s sudden removal from the classroom. At that meeting, board president Charles Anderson said the administration was investigating the situation and that the board alone would determine his future with the district.
Last November, former Mattituck High School physics teacher Tom Tomaszewski was hired to replace Mr. DeCaro and has been teaching his physics and AP physics classes since that time, the district said in a statement.
Mr. Tomaszewski taught physics in the district from 1971 to 1988, before Mr. DeCaro joined the faculty in 1996.
It is unclear if Mr. DeCaro will be removed from his full-time faculty position in the district.
He had coached the baseball team since 2003 and tallied a record of 238-139-1. He led the team to a state championship in 2015 and was named Suffolk County Coach of the Year by Newsday that season. He earned that honor again in 2017 after leading the Tuckers to the Long Island championship.
The Tuckers went 12-11 last season, were the No. 3 seed in the Class B playoffs and saw their season end against Babylon in the postseason.
WITH BOB LIEPA