Catasauqua Press

Sunday, December 17, 2017

Dorn steps down

Thursday, December 7, 2017 by jeff moeller Special to the Press in Sports

Phil Dorn knew it was time for a change.

In his four years as head coach of the Roughies’ football program, Dorn was pleased with the progress of his players in the classroom and in their post high school lives. He believed that he did what he could to guide them down the right paths.

On the field, though, things didn’t work out as anticipated.

Under Dorn, the Roughies won nine of their 45 games during the four-year span. He inherited a program that arguably had one of the most successful runs in school history under Tom Falzone, going 47-18 record in five seasons, winning consecutive Colonial League titles and capturing a District 11 Class 2A title before he left to accept the head coaching job at Nazareth.

The Roughies finished this past season with an overall 3-9 mark, but they did qualify for districts for the first time in Dorn’s tenure. Prior to joining Catasauqua, Dorn spent seven seasons at Pocono Mountain East where he posted an overall 23-49 record and made two appearances in the Eastern Conference playoffs.

“I wanted to do what was best for the players,” said Dorn. “We had more success off the field than we did on the field. I thought we helped a lot of kids off the field. Coaching isn’t always all about wins and losses.

“Unfortunately, we weren’t able to get as many things accomplished as I would have liked to do. We did some good things, but we just didn’t do enough. I did the very best that I could and did everything with the best interest of the kids in mind.

“I just thought it was time for them to hear a new voice. It just didn’t happen for us.”

Catasauqua athletic director Tom Moll realized Dorn would have some challenges ahead after a historic run.

“Phil came in at a tough spot, immediately following some of the best seasons in school history,” Moll said. “People probably expected us to continue that level of success, but it’s tough to do at a small school.

“Obviously, we didn’t win as many games as we wanted, but that doesn’t take away from what he did for the program. Phil always had the best interest of the kids at heart and worked hard. We thank him for his dedication.”

His players felt his impact on the program.

“I am sad that he is leaving, but he made his decision,” said senior quarterback Andrew Brett. “We understood his decision. I am glad that he was my coach for the past four years. He made me a better person. I wish him the best of luck wherever he coaches next.”

“Coach Dorn put us in the best possible position to succeed every Friday night,” added senior wide receiver Corey Raysely. “He has always preached ‘family’ environment.

“I consider him more than a coach. I consider him a friend. I want to thank him for everything he has done for me on and off the field. Coach (Dorn) has an unbelievably intelligent football mind and hope he coaches again in the near future.”

Dorn believes the program can take an upward swing with optimistic outlooks in the feeder programs.

“We had success on our JV team and at our middle school program,” he said. “Our overall numbers are good.

“The people at the CYA program are doing a fantastic job. They have some talent down there and it will be a positive someday for the varsity team.”

Dorn, who is employed in the district, wants to see the program succeed. He plans on coaching next season.

“I wish all the best for the program and hope the next coach can reach some loftier goals,” he said. “I’m not saying that I did this for my family. I told my players and they understood.

“There is a good young crew coming up and it is time for someone else to lead them. I am grateful for the opportunity I had, and know that I acted in the best interest of everybody.”