Finelli Formula At Work At St.Mary's

Swampscott resident and former Swampscott High cross country coach Dom Finelli is building a robust program at St. Mary's.


Passion for cross country still stirs in Dom Finelli.

And his formula for building a program — hustle, salesmanship and inspiration — still works.

The Swampscott resident and former cross country and track coach at Swampscott High reintroduced cross country at St. Mary's of Lynn last fall.

He used the same formula there as he did when building programs at other schools where he coached, including Swampscott.

St. Mary's, a grades 6-12 school of about 650 students, had been without a cross country program for 10 years. 

By intense lobbying Dom got 28 kids to lace up their running shoes in 2011.

"Mainly by calling almost every incoming student, emailing them and meeting students in the cafeteria the spring before our first season and selling our program to anyone who would listen got us to that number," he said. 

This year he redoubled his efforts and about doubled the number of runners.

The team has 51 members it its second season. They include Jennifer Grimes of Swampscott who transferred to St Mary's as a junior,  and sophomore Cullen Coyle who ran at Swampscott middle school two years ago.  

Cullen is projected as the team's 5th or 6th runner.  

One of its top runners for the girls is Sarah Ryan, an 8th grader from Nahant.  She leads a contingent of Nahant runners, including eighth graders Abigaill Frary and Caitlin Foley and 9th grader Casey Walton.

The coach's goal is to continue to grow the program with student-athletes who want to be part of a program that has a family-like atmosphere and who want to work each day. 

His formula relies on numbers, recruiting lots of runners. Lots of kids striving to improve forges an attitude that has a cumulative positive influence on all the runners.

Another step in the Finelli formula is dreaming big.

He says his team is very young, only three seniors, and has a lot of raw talent.

"If we continue to work hard we will shock some teams this year," he said, "and, who knows, maybe this young group will win a state title in a few years." 

Nathan King September 27, 2012 at 04:27 PM
Dom Finelli always will be Mr Swampscott XC to literally hundreds of Swampscott runners and their parents. I sincerely hope that Dom's belief that its kids first before petty politics continues to bring him great success at St Mary's.
Swampscott grad. September 28, 2012 at 04:25 PM
It doesn't surprise me one bit. Mr. Finelli is great with kids and a great motivator!
justarunner October 02, 2012 at 04:50 PM
I miss Mr. Finelli. He was a good guy and a great coach!
Elaina F. October 03, 2012 at 04:50 PM
Hi Domenic It is great to hear you are doing well. Keep up the good work.
Marianne Hartmann October 04, 2012 at 12:43 AM
Terry I am sure your reader did not expect such a backlash from his negative comments. The reason is because there are so many true Dom fans among us. Dom changed more kids lives than just about anyone else I know. It is wonderful to hear that someone who did so much for the youth of Swampscott is continuing to help kids (no matter where they may be). Thanks for running the story.


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