The Becton women’s soccer program recently welcomed new coaches! This summer, Lenny Lewandowski and Ashley Paladino were hired as new Varsity and JV coaches. The new signings were brought in with the hope of rebuilding and developing a winning football program that would continue to grow over time!
Lewandowski is the girls’ new head college football coach. He grew up in Carlstadt, New Jersey, but attended Don Bosco High School, Ramsey. His football journey started in 1973 during his freshman year of high school. After high school he continued his football career attending Seton Hall where he would play Division 1 men’s football. Graduating from college did not end his involvement in the game as he continued his passion for the sport by coaching at his Alma Mater in 1981. After his role as assistant coach at Don Bosco, he then assumed the title of leader of the university boys. football coach at Paramus Catholic in 1998, where he would continue to coach for 17 years. Besides being a men’s soccer coach at Paramus Catholic, he also helped coach the women’s soccer team for 6 years. His football CV is not limited to coaching at secondary level as he has experience coaching several club teams. These teams include Torpedoes Soccer Club, Bergen Raiders, World Class Soccer Club and a League Select team who have competed in tournaments in Europe. Additionally, he was also the chairman and founding member of Ajax Soccer Club at Midland Park.
Outside of football, Lewandowski was a teacher and guidance counselor at Paramus Catholic Secondary School for many years. This year will mark his 25th year as a faculty member of the school. He teaches AP psychology while serving as a member of the school’s guidance department. Lewandowski can be described as a man who wears many hats as not only is he a teacher, coach, husband and father, but he is also a licensed clinical social worker.
When asked to describe his coaching style, he explained, “My coaching style is a mix of my competitiveness as an athlete and my clinical knowledge of human behavior…” He also mentions that during the season, he dedicates much of his life to the team and hopes to have a positive impact on young student athletes. He decided to switch coaches here at Becton not only because he was intrigued by a new challenge, but also to be closer to his family, as his mother lives nearby in Carlstadt.
Besides the tactical side of football, he notes that one of his favorite parts of coaching is helping his players learn the nuances of the game. Finally, when asked about his expectations for the team this season, he replied: “I always try to keep in mind the possibility of winning a championship, like the league. However, helping the team grow both athletically, mentally and into strong youngsters is always on my mind. We started this year well and recently went through a difficult period. My goal now is to help the team overcome significant competitive challenges and grow as a program.
JV Coach Ashley Paladino has been involved in football since she was 5 years old. Her knowledge of the game is very extensive as she has not only been a player, but also a coach and referee. Paladino played 4 years at the varsity level at Hackensack Highschool where she captained her junior and senior years. She also continued her career after high school playing in college. She started coaching in 2016 to “help players develop their skills and their love of the sport”. Paladino also explains that coaching is not just about winning games or scoring goals, but about learning skills such as communication, teamwork and dedication. When asked what excites her the most for the upcoming season, she said she was very excited about working at a new school and meeting new athletes. When asked what it was like to work with someone new while creating a brand new soccer program, she responded by saying it was great to be on the ground floor of the new program. . She also mentions that Coach Lewandowski’s many years of experience are not only rewarding for the athletes, but also for herself as she continues to learn from him and his in-depth knowledge of the game. Coach Paladino expresses that her coaching style and Lewandowski’s coaching style blend together to “Build a program where girls not only learn the game, but develop various skills like effective communication, teamwork and responsibility on and off the field.” She ends with an affirmative quote that states, “Together we cultivate a positive atmosphere to empower girls to grow into amazing players and individuals.”
Senior captain Aimee Bulger remarked: “The coaching staff definitely has a more positive impression and feels a lot more together than ever. I like the coaches style of coaching because it’s so much more helpful and progressive. We are working on the areas that we need to improve. Bulger ends his answer by adding “Coach is such a genuine person too. There is a good balance between fun and seriousness. Additionally, junior captain Martyna Kozdron shares, “This year the coaching staff has a great attitude. Setting the tone for a team is very important as it allows a team to understand what needs to be accomplished throughout the season. Kozdron also mentions that the new coaches have been very helpful in creating and implementing new ideas to make this season the best season to come. When asked what excites her the most this season, she explained: “I’m very excited to re-establish a new bond with the coaching staff and make memories with my amazing team-mates. Over the past two years we’ve had our ups and downs as a team, and I feel like we’ve only gotten better, but we won’t stop there! »
The future of Becton’s women’s soccer program shows nothing but growth and strength in the hands of new coaches. Although the season has only just begun, the team is already showing great signs of improvement, not only through the game, but also through communication on and off the pitch. The new coaching staff has transformed the program in such a short time, which brings nothing but optimism and positivity for the rest of the season and the subsequent seasons to come.