St. Joe's coach could get to 1,000th win next

WESTCHESTER, Ill. (WLS) -- Heading into the conference tournament this weekend, St. Joseph's has their work cut out for them.

"I think we're getting better, which is always a good thing. We have to win the next game," Coach Gene Pingatore said.

And if they do, it would be the 1,000 victory for Pingatore, now in his 48th season as head coach.

"It just seemed to go so fast - year after year... great kids coming back... the years just roll by," he said. "I can't remember one day, not one... that i said, 'I don't feel like going in today, got up and gone to work every day."

Hired as interim coach in 1969, Pingatore took St. Joe's to the next level, coaching the school's most notable alums - winning two state titles. But for him, it's always been about more than wins and losses.

"When you think about 1,000 wins... something really special... my reward is seeing the kids move on and do well, that's what it's all about," he said.

At 80 years old, Coach Ping remains sharp as ever and has no plans for retirement, saying he'll know when he's over, and no matter what happens in their next game, he's not there yet. null
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