Giancanelli Resigns Post at El Camino Real

Times Staff Writer

Skip Giancanelli, who led El Camino Real High to the City Section 4-A Division championship game in 1977 and 1980, has resigned as coach after 18 seasons.

Ralph Stam, an assistant with the team, was named co-coach with Mike Maio, the B football and varsity baseball coach.

Giancanelli, 58, who has coached at El Camino Real since the school opened in 1969, will remain as a teacher and chairman of the physical education department.

"Twenty-nine years is a long time," said Giancanelli, who coached at Lincoln before moving to El Camino Real. "It's hard work, and, to tell you the truth, the last three years have been kind of disappointing, and not very productive."

El Camino Real, once one of the most feared programs in the Valley, has experienced a steady decline in enrollment, which has contributed to the team's lack of success, Stam said.

"We've had a little over 100 guys out for the team in the last three years--total," said Stam, an assistant to Giancanelli for the past 17 years. "This year we had nine players going both ways, and some of them played on special teams, too."

The Conquistadores finished the year 0-8-2 and have not won a game since the sixth week of the 1985 season, when they defeated Cleveland, 23-7. El Camino Real managed only a 13-13 tie with Kennedy and a 26-26 tie with San Fernando in '87 and was outscored, 265-90.

Stam said increased turnout is a top priority.

"We need to have better competition for positions," Stam said. "When you have 33 guys out for the team, you have a pretty good idea of who is going to play where."

Stam said 130 players, including B team players, attended a football meeting at school Tuesday.

"It's looking better," Stam said. "We can still use more."

Maio, who will coach the receivers and defensive backs, served as varsity coach at Belmont High from 1971 to '77. Stam will handle linemen and linebackers.

Giancanelli played professionally as a running back-flanker with the Philadelphia Eagles from 1953-57 and was the team's leading rusher in 1955 after scoring five touchdowns in his rookie season. He played the 1958 season in the Canadian Football League as a member of the Hamilton Tiger-Cats before an injury to his right knee ended his career. Giancanelli will continue as an assistant track coach.

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