ROCHESTER – Longtime Monroe Community College men's soccer coach Nelson Cupello has announced that the 2018 season will be his last leading the Black and Gold.
Cupello, who is entering his 30th year as Tribune head coach, will retire at the end of the campaign. He brings a 358-133-37 record into Saturday's season opener at home and needs seven wins to pass legendary coach Joe Mancarella for first all-time in program history.
Not only is Cupello one of the college's most successful coaches, he is also one of its most decorated student-athletes. He starred for the Tribunes during the 1970 and '71 seasons, scoring 54 total goals and earning All-American honors his sophomore season. His seven goals in a game and 31 goals during the '71 season are marks that still stand.
Both teams won regional championships, and the '71 squad finished runner-up at the national tournament.
Cupello moved on to SUNY Brockport, where he was once again an All-American and helped the Golden Eagles win the 1974 national title. He was then the No. 1 draft choice of the Rochester Lancers of the North American Soccer League, where he played for several years.
Cupello returned to MCC as an assistant under Mancarella before taking the head coaching job at SUNY Fredonia. He led the Blue Devils from 1985-1989 and took them to a pair of NCAA semifinals.
After Mancarella retired, Cupello took the reins of the Tribune program in 1990 and has led the charges ever since. His teams have captured 13 regional championships, and the 2012 squad finished third at the NJCAA Division I national tournament.
Cupello has been named Region III Coach of the Year 16 times and Northeast District Coach of the Year on three occasions. He was a member of the MCC Sports Hall of Fame's inaugural class in 1984, and was inducted into the NJCAA Soccer Hall of Fame in 2002.
The Tribunes kick off the 2018 season at home on Saturday, Sept. 1 against Morton College. Game time is 12 p.m.