Northern Athletic Conference cross country standouts Maddie Dinneen (second from left) from Norwood-Norfolk and Franklin Academy’s Dylan Perry (second from right) were named as the 2019 Justin Casserly Most Valuable Runners for their efforts during the fall season. They are pictured with their coaches Kent Fetter (left) and Matt Tessier.

MALONE – The Matt Tessier era at Franklin Academy will come to an end this February.

The longtime cross country and indoor and outdoor track and field coach announced in a Facebook his decision to head to Potsdam Central School District to teach health.

Tessier stated in the post:

“To my Malone friends, students, parents, colleagues, and former athletes who are like family. I will be leaving the district in Feb to start a new position in Potsdam teaching Health. This puts me ½ mile from my house and the track is next to my mom’s house. I will forever love my Husky days. For my fraternity brothers out there reading this post, the school colors are blue and orange…so it is fitting as far as matching my KDR colors.”

The Huskies have always made a splash during sectionals throughout Tessier’s 11-year tenure with the program. Former Athletic Director Eileen Kilcullen, who worked with Tessier at Franklin Academy from 2008-2019, saw many student-athletes’ success over the years.

“Matt encouraged students of all abilities to participate in the programs that he coached,” Kilcullen said. “He provided an opportunity for many students to be a member of a team that may not have otherwise had that experience.”

During the abbreviated Fall I season, the Franklin Academy boys cross country team finished 6-1, while girls cross country finished 5-2.

Franklin Academy’s fall sports seasons came to a halt upon all northern Franklin County schools switching to a remote learning period on Nov. 12.

“Having students be a part of an extracurricular activity such as athletics provides a way for the student to connect to the school and the community,” Kilcullen said. “The more a student feels connected, the more likely they are to be successful. I appreciated Matt’s willingness to optimize student participation in the programs that he coached.”

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