• June 6Seniors: mandatory grad practice at 10:35 a.m. at the VBCC on Monday, June10.
  • June 5Good luck to spring sports athletes as they continue into post-season play.
  • June 5Seniors: mandatory graduation meeting held at the school on Tuesday, June 11, at noon.
  • May 29Graduation will take place on June 14, at 1 p.m., at the Virginia Beach Convention Center.
The student news site of Frank W. Cox High School

Falcon Press News

The student news site of Frank W. Cox High School

Falcon Press News

The student news site of Frank W. Cox High School

Falcon Press News

Staff spotlight of the month: teacher, coach Santo Ripa

When students look for a safe place within the school and a teacher or coach they can speak to about most things “teen” related, they head to Coach Ripa’s room in the science hallway where he teaches Oceanography and Environmental Science. Ripa is not only the go-to teacher, but he is also the state championship winning Boys Varsity Soccer Head Coach.

Q: What’s the difference between your teaching and coaching styles? 

A: “When I coach, I can be a little more emotional, a little more forward-thinking to my own systems of play and principles. When I have to teach, I’m addressing a much broader audience and I am also kind of limited to the curriculum that’s provided.”

Q: Can you reflect on the soccer season so far and your goals moving forward?  

A: “We are holding a record of 10-1-1. Ten wins, one loss to Landstown High School, and a tie with First Colonial High School. Our season has been extremely successful in my eyes. We never had a season with only one loss as far as I remember. To say that we are not having success is not fair to the boys. That said, I feel like we have given up opportunities to win matches, for example, First Colonial and Landstown were both very winnable games, so to say that we are having the perfect season isn’t true because we have a lot of flaws we have to fix before postseason play. I would like to think that our current record has us set up to play region, meaning we should qualify. However, the remaining games that we have will determine our seeding, and I would much rather be a higher seed than a lower seed. We have Kempsville, Kellam, and Churchland remaining, all three games can cause us some problems, so we have got to do our job to get to the postseason.”

Q: What’s one of your favorite memories with the soccer program? 

A: “Winning the 2022 state championship title. Last year we won the region, and that was my first year as head coach. It felt really nice to win the region and then we were the state runner-up. While that is a success, it is also a heartbreak for me. But this year I would like to go for another run. We have 12 seniors who have the ability to carry us really far. I’d love to say that this year marks the pinnacle of my coaching career.”

Q: What is your life motto? 

A: “My life motto is centered around taking care of the people you care about. Take care of the people you are about, and they take care of you.”

Q: What’s most rewarding about your job? 

A: “Two-sided. In the classroom, I love taking a kid who has no interest or a bad experience with science and turning them into someone who’s interested in it whether it’s going to the Brock Center or applying for environmental conservation in college. On the soccer side of things, there’s no better feeling than watching the boys win. It’s true, raw happiness you only get when you win. Sports are so difficult because you can’t always win so you feel the lows but you also get to feel the highs and you can ride those highs as far as you can and that’s rewarding to see.”

Q: What impact do you wish to have on your students and players? 

A: “I hope that when the day comes when you guys are my age, you look back and you just reflect on the positive energy that I try to promote in y’all. Taking care of people, trying your hardest, and not leaving anything behind when it comes to the classroom. You guys have one job and the job is to do well in school. Don’t get me wrong, everyone comes from different walks, and they’ve got to work and take care of their families and all that stuff adds up, but doing well in school is huge for me and I love to wake those kids up who aren’t there. On the soccer field, just trying your best, leaving nothing behind. You don’t want to look back and have regret. The only way you can avoid having regret is by being proud of what you do. The only way to be proud of what you do is to give it your all.”

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About the Contributor
Ava Rassool
Ava Rassool, Humans of CHS
Sophomore Editior Journalism II Student I've been playing soccer for 11 years for my club team, and this will be my second year playing for Cox. I also enjoy spending time with my friends and family, going to the beach, and traveling.  

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