Baseball coach Ken Perrone to retire after 30 seasons
Salem State University baseball coach Ken Perrone has announced that he will retire from head coaching following the conclusion of the 2012 baseball season. Perrone, who is entering his 30th year as the Vikings manager, has led the Salem State baseball program since 1983. Associate head coach Mike Ward will succeed Perrone, and will assume head coaching duties for the 2013 campaign.
Under Ken Perrone’s 29 year leadership, the Vikings have amassed a record of 643-385-4, placing Perrone among the top 30 victorious coaches in NCAA Division III history. During his tenure, Salem State University’s baseball team has been selected for post-season tournament play twenty-three (23) times—including 14 Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) bids, three NCAA selections and five Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletics Conference (MASCAC) titles.
Salem State University athletic director Tim Shea, expressing his gratitude to coach Perrone for his dedication to the university, its students and all of his former players, noted that, “Ken Perrone has given tremendous time and energy to our program throughout his career at the university. He has always been a champion of the underdog, willing to give an athlete another chance to make the team or to earn more playing time. Ken’s enthusiasm and his love of coaching will be difficult to replicate. I look forward to an exciting and successful 30th year as Ken completes his tenure here.”
Although he still has one more year, Perrone filled with emotion when speaking of the place he has called home for the last three decades. “Salem State was one of the joys of my life,” he explained. “I spent 30 years here, and loved going to work every day. I had great athletic directors in John Galaris and Tim Shea, and loved working for presidents James Amsler, Nancy Harrington and Patricia Maguire Meservey, as well as vice president Stanley Cahill. Salem State to me,” he continued, “is like a big, wonderful family. I shared so many great times with fellow coaches, secretaries and facilities personnel. Along the way I had great students to work with and I met many wonderful families.
“I thank God,” said Perrone, “that I could coach until age 77. I still feel great, but I know a part of me will die when I coach my final game in May. I will have coached 30 years at Salem State. That’s 60 baseball seasons overall. In total, that represents over 2000 career games and over 1400 career wins. Those are nice numbers to go out with and I thank everyone at Salem State for a lifetime of great memories and great friendships.”