By Paul Burton

ABINGTON (CBS) — The Abington High School football team beat St. Mary’s of Lynn 26-21 in the Division 6 state semifinal on Friday. The team’s victory celebration began on the field and continued onto the front lawn of head coach Jim Kelliher’s home, who was recently diagnosed with COVID-19.

“I thank you very much for being here. I appreciate it tremendously,” he shouted from his front steps.

The coach sat proudly outside his home, waving the Abington Green Wave Pride Flag back to the students. He had to miss Friday night’s big win due to contracting the virus.

Coach Kelliher waving to his players outside his home. (Photo Credit: Abington Cam)

The win catapulted Abington into the state final, but it also signified Kelliher’s 300th career win.

That’s why the players wanted to take the celebration to the coach’s home. As the players cheered and danced, he was presented with a very special 300th win game ball.

Kelliher says he was really moved by the team’s visit.

“I was really surprised by the fact that the busses were able to swing by my house here, and I was very grateful to be able to have that happen,” he said.

They celebration may have woke up the neighborhood, but it was all in good school spirit.

“I’ve enjoyed all these years and feel very fortunate to be here and stay for as long as I have,” he said

They still have two more games to play, including their Thanksgiving game and the state title game at Gillette Stadium. Kelliher hopes to be back on the field for that one.

He says he’s cherished every game and knows it won’t go on forever.

“Whenever it comes, it will come,” the coach said about the end of his career.  “And I’m going to be happy.”

 

Paul Burton