Nutley coach Luann Zullo attained a lofty milestone, with her 400th career victory, as the Raiders defeated Sayreville, 9-4, on May 20.
Zullo began her coaching career at West Essex, where she led the Knights to back-to-back Essex County Tournament titles, in 1997 and 1998, before returning to her alma mater in 1999. She’s led Nutley to multiple state sectional championships and in 2010, guided the Raiders to the Group 3 final. In 2011, Nutley won the Essex County Tournament crown, making her the only coach in ECT history to lead two different schools to championships.
A member of the NJSIAA Hall of Fame, Zullo was lauded by assistant coach Mike DiPiano.
“It’s been an honor and a privilege to coach beside Luann,” said DiPiano. “In my athletic and coaching career I’ve been blessed to be around some great coaches, including my dad, Coach Ice at TSC, Rick Jacobs and Scott Goodale, and she’s right up there with all of them.”
Its been a good year for coaching milestones in Essex County. Bob Mayer of Bloomfield and Mount St. Dominic’s Lorenzo Sozio each won their 500th career game this year. Livingston’s Jason Daily won his 300th a week ago and Andrea Mondadori of West Essex took home her 200th last month.
DiPiano noted that the celebration will be quick, as Zullo will focus on the NJSIAA Tournament, which starts next week. Nutley is 21-5 and the second seed in the state sectional.
“We are going to celebrate this for a little tonight with the team, family, and friends,” said DiPiano. “But tomorrow, Luann will be back at work, and all of our focus will be on getting that one win that’s eluded us. She’s already going over what we need to do to get better on the bus right now.
“That’s what makes her a special coach.”