PEARL RIVER, N.Y. - As part of a continuing spotlight series, Daily Voice sat down with Pearl River Director of Athletics Todd Santabarbara.
Now in his sixth year at Pearl River High School, Director of Athletics Todd Santabarbara simply loves the passion and the excitement of high school sports.
On the night we caught up with him, Santabarbara was in his element -- overseeing one of the wildest nights of the winter sports season -- a matchup between the Pirates and top rival Tappan Zee.
The gym at Pearl River was overflowing with bodies and emotions, with the whole place at chaos level.
"I think tonight paints the best picture of why I love my job," Santabarbara told Daily Voice. "The atmosphere, the energy, seeing student athletes get to compete, and to see the end product of all the hard work and effort they put into the classroom and the athletic arena."
Santabarbara went to Mohonasen High School in Rotterdam, where he played football and baseball. He then attended Ithaca College, where he continued to play football.
Prior to coming to Pearl River, Santabarbara was a health teacher at Clarkstown South High School, where he was also assistant varsity football coach, and assistant varsity girls lacrosse coach for six years.
We asked what he felt was one of the top challenges facing high school athletes today.
"Making choices - choosing to do the right thing, choosing to play for their high school instead of maybe a club team," Santabarbara said. "We've also seen a reduction in multi-sport athletes. I think there are skill sets from each sport that you can apply, and we do encourage kids to play multiple sports."
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