The Shafter Press - Serving the community since 1922

By Jamie Stewart
The Shafter Press 

SHS coach, star player in spotlight


January 31, 2019 | View PDF

Jamie Stewart | The Shafter Press

Coach Jerald Pierucci and Marco Rodriguez: hometown kids making good.

Shafter High School was well represented at the 71st Annual Community Service Awards Banquet at the Shafter's Ford Theater.

Shafter High Head Football Coach Jerald Pierucci received the Youth Development Award on Thursday night.

Pierucci is in his second year as a teacher and head coach for the Shafter Generals. The Generals had one of the most successful seasons in the school's history this year, going through the season undefeated and reached the Central Section Division V championship game.

But as great of a season Shafter had this year on the field, it still pales compared to the job that Pierucci does off the field, helping the players build a bond, learn responsibility and be good young men.

Pierucci has mandatory study hall sessions for all players, and they have weekly grade reviews to make sure the players are staying on task in the classroom as well as their time playing football. He also led the team on a camping trip at Hume Lake, giving the players a chance to bond as a team and led them through team-building exercises that strengthened that bond.

Pierucci also is the advisor for the school's Audio Visual Media Department that boasts over a quarter-million dollars of equipment. The students learn how to make videos as well as broadcast regular newscasts that are streamed throughout the school.

Pierucci also had one of the best highlights of the evening when he mentioned during his acceptance speech that he was blessed with a wonderful woman by his side. "You know that being a football coaches' wife is challenging. They say that there are only two kinds of coaches' wives, exes and great ones. I was blessed with a great one."

Pierucci also said that the best thing for him about the night was seeing Marco Rodriguez up on the stage.

Rodriguez received the Young Person Award this year. Marco was one of the leading receivers for the Shafter High Generals, going over 100 yards twice in a game this season. Marco was named to the BVarsity All Area Team as an Honorable Mention as well as being one of the leading receivers in the SSL.

Marco's performance on the field is nothing compared to his off-the-field accomplishments. He is in the running for valedictorian, with a GPA over 4.3. Marco, SHS' Associated Student Body president, also is active in several clubs on campus, including Key Club.

Marco is planning to major in engineering in college and fulfill a goal that he has set for himself. "I plan on becoming an engineer and return to Shafter and give back to the community that has meant so much to me. I came here not knowing the language, which was tough. But, it just made me work harder, and now I appreciate it so much more."


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