By Matt Jenkins
---- — The Massachusetts High School Football Coaches Association held its annual awards banquet over the weekend and several players and coaches from the North Shore were honored.
Bishop Fenwick’s Dave Dugan was one of six men who earned Assistant Coach of the Year Awards and Swampscott coach Steve Dembowski was among a group of six to be honored as Distinguished Service Award winners. Former St. John’s Prep coach Jim O’Leary was also formally honored as a Hall of Fame inductee.
Masconomet’s Michael “Mickey” Gallagher and North Shore Tech’s Andrew Moles were also recognized with Paul Costello Courageous Player Awards.
Dugan coached the defense for a Crusader team that went 13-0 and captured the Division 5 Super Bowl championship. Fenwick, under Dugan’s guidance, surrendered only 12.5 points per game while running the table. Fenwick head coach Dave Woods promoted Dugan to associate head coach at the conclusion of the season.
Dembowski, meanwhile, was honored along with Greg Burke, Ray Consenza, Vin Joseph, David King and Charlie Stevenson — the group that put a lot of work into bringing the playoff proposal to fruition this season.
O’Leary stepped down as St. John’s Prep head coach this year after leading the Eagles’ program for 30 years. He retired with a 207-110-2 record, including nine Catholic Conference championship and six Super Bowl appearances.
Masco’s Gallagher was a defensive end/tight end for the Chieftains. He was an inspiration to his teammates and coaches, always working hard and keeping a positive attitude while battling Crohn’s disease.
Moles, a defensive end, was the epitome of perseverance and determination, playing despite being blind in one eye and deaf in one ear.