By TOM WILLIAMS
When you have a decade of sports success like Ocean City High School had from 2010-19 you can be sure of one thing – there were good coaches involved.
You can review the top teams of the decades and the decade all stars, sport by sport, here.
Some were relatively new coaches, others had been around for quite a while. Some sports had different coaches at the end of the decade than they had at the beginning. Some took over established programs and kept things at a high level. Others needed to establish their programs and improve them. And there was some turbulence, as the school had four athletics directors in the decade.
There are dozens of coaches at OCHS who have deservedly received recognition for their accomplishments. For example, 12 who were head coaches during the decade have career won-lost percentages over 70 percent. But, as part of this Best of the Decade program, the best of the best will be recognized.
Lets start with the boys sports.
In the 10 seasons of boys cross country from 2010-19, Matt Purdue’s teams were 92-1 in dual meets, winning 99 straight (dating back to 2008) before losing one in 2018. His teams won nine Cape May County Meets in those 10 seasons, finished first in the conference nine times and won the Cape-Atlantic League Meet five times. The Raiders also won three South Jersey championships and finished second in the South Jersey meet six other times. Overall, in his 12 seasons, Purdue has a 109-2 record and his .982 career winning percentage is the best of any coach in any sport in the CAL. Matt Purdue is the OCHS Boys Sports Coach of the Decade.
In seven seasons as head coach of the OCHS field hockey team during the 2nd Decade, Cory Terry’s teams were 145-17. They won seven conference championships in those seven years, six South Jersey titles and three state championships. Her teams were 28-6 in NJSIAA Tournament games. That 145-17 record works out to am .895 percentage, the fourth best career percentage in OCHS history. Terry is one of the OCHS coaches who returned to their alma mater after a great playing career. She is a member of the OCHS Sports Hall of Fame as an athlete (Cory Picketts) who was dominant in field hockey and softball. She went on to Princeton University where she was part of an NCAA Final Four field hockey team. Cory Terry is the OCHS Girls Sports Coach of the Decade.
Paul Baruffi is well known throughout New Jersey as one of the state’s most successful girls basketball coaches. From 2010-19 his teams were 230-62 and eight of those teams won 20 or more games. During the decade, Baruffi’s girls won seven conference titles, finished first in the CAL Tournament three times, won five South Jersey titles and the only state championship in OCHS girls basketball history. And his team won another South Jersey title this season, though it doesn’t count because a new decade had started. That is what almost everybody knows. But Baruffi has also spent his fall seasons as a football assistant and his springs as an assistant track coach, making a strong impact on both of those programs, as well. For his contributions to three programs as a coach, Paul Baruffi is the Overall OCHS Coach of the Decade.
These three coaches will be the first to tell you that they had good athletes and were blessed with good assistant coaches. But the consistent success under their leadership during the 10-season decade by Matt Purdue, Cory Terry and Paul Baruffi make them the Coaches of the 2nd Decade at OCHS.
Next in the 2010-19 review are the Athletes of the Decade.