For most of his life, Kevin Carey has been tied to Quincy High’s football program.
He graduated from school in 1994 and returned in 1998 as a coach, where he spent time at all three levels. After 25 seasons coaching at Quincy, including the last five as head coach, Carey decided to retire from the program citing a variety of reasons.
“I’ve been doing it for a long time,” Carey said. “I’m not looking for a change so much, I just feel like it’s time for me to step away. They’re great kids, it’s hard to walk away from that. They’re great kids to work with, but I think they’re the ones who need a change.
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Carey will continue in his full-time position as Dean at Quincy High, but will have more time to spend with his family. Her oldest daughter, Kayleigh, is about to graduate from Rockland High. Her other daughter, Abby, is a freshman at South Shore Tech and her son Matthew is a middle schooler at Rockland.
“My kids are teenagers, that’s still a part of it,” Carey said. “You want to be there because you’re not getting that back. You want to be there to see them participate in what they’re doing, obviously being a head coach takes that time away.
Carey returned to the program as a freshman coach in 1998. He served as head coach of the varsity junior team from 1999 to 2007 before being elevated to varsity team defensive coordinator. In 2018, he succeeded Bill Reardon as varsity head coach.
In his five seasons at the helm, the Presidents finished 18-30 in a busy Patriot League. In 2022, Quincy finished 7-4, which was the team’s first winning record since 2014. The Presidents won just nine games in the four seasons before Carey took over. Carey’s team went 2-2 on Thanksgiving against North Quincy (North Quincy also won a meeting between the two teams in April 2021 in the Fall II season).
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“It’s bittersweet,” Carey said. “I feel like it was my time to go. I also think whoever takes over, I hope the program is on the right track.
Carey’s last game couldn’t have been more memorable. Quarterback Andrew Novak threw for 390 yards and had six touchdowns in a 40-35 win over North Quincy on Thanksgiving. The match came down to the final game and the Raiders rallied from a 21-0 deficit to make it a thriller.
“He had the match of his life,” Carey said of Novak after the win.
On November 28, just four days after the Thanksgiving triumph, Carey told his team that he would not be returning in 2023.
“It will forever be in my memory,” Carey said of his final game. “It was one of the best games of this 90 year old rivalry. Back and forth, back and forth. Coming out with a win, how can that not be memorable and great for me personally, but also for Quincy High School.
His final season was his most successful at the helm. Although the Presidents did not make the playoffs, they still finished above .500 against a tough schedule. Every team Quincy has played in the regular season has made the playoffs. League foes Hanover, Plymouth South and Scituate have all won playoff games.
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“Hopefully they can get over this hump,” Carey said of the playoffs. “We were close this year but hopefully they can succeed and go further.”
Carey was grateful for the support he received from administration, players, parents and coaches.
“I’m still in contact with some of the players since I started and I was 21,” Carey said. “Good or bad years, it was just great the connections I had with the players and the different coaches over the years.
Carey expects to return to training at some point.
“I was going back and forth a lot, it’s hard to get away from those kids,” Carey said. “They are great kids, they work hard.
“They give you everything they have and it’s hard to walk away because you want them to be in good hands and I’m sure they will be.”