Cal U baseball coach Conte notches 500th career win
College Football Videos
California University of Pennsylvania baseball coach Mike Conte took his place in school history Sunday.
The longtime Vulcans skipper garnered his 500th career victory as Cal U swept a doubleheader against IUP at Consol Energy Park.
In his 18th season with Cal U, Conte became the first coach of a men's program at the university to reach the 500-win milestone.
Conte was unavailable for comment Sunday evening, but several former players lauded his accomplishment.
“He's a great teacher of the game. He is the face of Cal U baseball,” said Ryan Encapera, who was both a player and graduate assistant under Conte. “The biggest thing is I never realized he coached that many games. That says a lot right there.”
A Brownsville native, Conte was a two-time all-conference outfielder at Virginia Tech still ranks fifth in school history with 43 career home runs.
He was drafted by the Oakland Athletics in 1989 and played five seasons in the minor league system before retiring.
Conte began his coaching career in 1994 at Cal U as an assistant before taking over for longtime Vulcans skipper Chuck Gismondi in 1997.
Since then, Conte has racked up an overall record of 501-342-4.
“He's built an incredible program that's for sure,” said California Area baseball coach Nick Damico, a player on Cal U's 2004 PSAC championship team under Conte. “He's a real positive guy, always upbeat, and he taught you a lot about conditioning, speed and power. Five hundred wins is pretty impressive. I'm really happy for him.”
Encapera noted several current high school baseball coaches who played under Conte, such as Damico, Bobby Saddler at Franklin Regional, and Scott VanSickle at Carmichaels.
One of the best things I can think of is how many high school baseball coaches are guys that played for Mike at Cal U and that speaks well for the future of the game,” Encapera said. “I think that stands out as much as the 500 wins and I think Mike would tell you the same thing.
“I would say if there's something people would say about Mike Conte, he's intense and he does things with a lot of class. He's a coach parents would want their kid to play for.”
Conte resides in California Borough with his wife, Jamie, and their four children.
Rick Bruni Jr. is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at email@example.com or 724-684-2635.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Point Park basketball player finds home-court advantage
- WCCC women’s basketball team captures 3rd straight conference championship
- District college notes: Seton Hill sweeps lacrosse awards
- W&J softball team likes underdog role
- District college notes: St. Vincent women open PAC tournament Friday
- District college notebook: Pine-Richland’s Giordano wins gold at ACC championships