FPC Athletics Director Steve DeAugustino gave his thoughts on the Bulldogs' athletic success in 2018-19 and what's to come for the school.
Steve DeAugustino is the athletics director at Flagler Palm Coast High School — a position he's served in for the past 11 years. He recently spoke with the Palm Coast Observer about his thoughts on the Bulldogs' athletic success during the 2018-19 school year and what's to come for the future of FPC sports. Here's what he had to say:
Q: When you look back at the 2018-19 school year, how will you view the athletic success you guys had here at FPC?
I think it was a pretty outstanding year. The thing I’m most proud of is that the whole year, athlete and or coach, we only had one ejection from a game across the board. With all those contests, I think that’s a pretty big accomplishment. At Flagler Palm Coast High School, sportsmanship, being first-class out on the field, I think our coaches understand that and I think our athletes understand that. More than wins or loses, it’s people’s perception of what we’re all about. Being first class on the field is always priority No. 1.
Q: How about your sport? You hired Zach Sanford as FPC’s newest wrestling coach. What’s your assessment of how the team did this past year?
Zach did a great job. There were some changes in the program, which I think are for the better. He’s got some hard working kids in there right now, and I think they’re going to be fine next year.
Q: I know some wrestling kids transferred last year following the departure of former coach Thomas Bartolotta to a new coaching gig in Georgia. How has the program reacted to that?
Zach never let that bother him. To be honest with you, Georgia is not as tough wrestling as Florida. If they were going up there to find a better path to being a district or regional champ, then yeah, sure. But it doesn’t make you a better wrestler. If that’s why they went up there, I don’t know the answer. But if someone doesn’t want to be here, I don’t really see the purpose in trying to make them stay here because their heart won’t be in it. Zach’s basically rebuilt the whole wrestling program. I’m not worried about our program at all. From what I can tell, they’re going to win a lot of matches next year.
Q: Speaking of departed coaches, how did you react to former baseball coach Jordan Butler stepping down? And what are your thoughts on the new coach, former Seabreeze coach Anthony Campanella?
Jordan had the opportunity to take a more administrative position, so I don’t fault him for taking it at all. As far as Antony goes, he’s been to three state Final Fours. He’s what we need. He’s what we want — not that Jordan wasn’t. He’s going to do a great job. I’m not too concerned about the direction the baseball program is going to go in when you have a guy with his experience taking over.
Q: You’ve been at FPC for 38 years — 27 as a wrestling coach and 11 as the athletics director. It seems that in your time here, you’ve really tried to foster an environment of accountability and integrity. Can you speak to that?
You’ve got to represent the school in a manner that we expect. It’s discipline more than anything. Having fun playing the game, enjoying what you’re doing, representing the school correctly, doing the right thing in the classroom, on the field, in the community — all that type of stuff is what builds champions. You can pretty much whittle it down to that.
Q: Are there any new projects you and the school are working on?
New? Not really. We're still in the process of redoing the bleachers at the football stadium (editors note: which will be completed before the start of the 2018 regular season). Just little things here and there. We're just trying to stay busy during the offseason.
Q: What are you looking forward to the most about this upcoming school year? Is there anything you want to change?
There's always something to improve on. I would like to get more coaches on campus as employees. It's hard to build relationships with a team when you're not here all day. But it's pretty hard to achieve all that. It can be tricky some times. It's just a hard fit to find people with all of those qualifications.
Q: Is there anything you'd like to add?
We're just going to go forward with those goals in mind: That we're going to be first class on the court or on the field, in the classroom, in the community.