An emotional week of triumph, tragedy and family for Greenwich coach John Marinelli

Greenwich High School head football coach John Marinelli, right, hugs his father, Lou Marinelli, the head coach of the New Canaan High School football team at the end of a game in Greenwich on Oct. 14, 2017. — Bob Luckey Jr. Photo

Since taking the reins of the Greenwich football program in 2015, John Marinelli has returned the Cardinals to their place among the state’s elite teams.

On Saturday, unbeaten Greenwich will play in a state final for the second straight season, lining up against the New Canaan Rams, the team Marinelli grew up watching, playing for as a quarterback and safety, and coaching for under his dad, Lou.

Emotionally, the game will be anything but easy for John.

“It’s still really difficult for me to look over across the sidelines and see the greatest role models in my life — (defensive coordinator) Chris Silvestri, Lou Marinelli — one of my best friends in (offensive coordinator) Dante Correnty and all the guys on that staff,” John said. “I have a very good relationship with them and they’re family.”

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