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Boys Baseball: Santonocito Named New Canisius Varsity Baseball Coach

When head coach Brian Tenney officially retired last summer many wondered who would take over the storied baseball program at Canisius high school.

On Thursday that question was answered. It was confirmed in a press release sent out by the school this morning that Justin Santonocito, owner of The Academy Stars Baseball training facility in Blasdell (, was named the team’s new head coach.

Santonocito could not be reached for comment.


Canisius Names New Baseball Coach

Justin Santonocito is a former professional baseball player.

Justin Santonocito joins Canisius High School as the new head varsity baseball coach. Coach Santonocito played professional baseball in the Arizona Diamondbacks and Cincinnati Reds organizations in the late 1990s. Since 2001, he has owned the Academy Stars nine-team travel baseball organization based in Blasdell, and has served as the head coach of the organization’s showcase team. The Academy Stars has earned regional recognition throughout the college baseball community for developing talent.

“Justin is all about baseball,” says Canisius Director of Athletics James Mauro. “He had an outstanding playing career, and since then, he has dedicated himself to teaching the game, and developing skills in young players through his Academy program. Justin is keenly aware of the rich history of Canisius baseball, and is eager to be a part of it and move it forward.”

Coach Santonocito replaces longtime Canisius baseball coach Bryan Tenney who retired from the program in August. Coach Tenney had been the head varsity baseball coach since 1991. Coach Santonocito takes over a program that has won 13 Georgetown Cups since 1991, and produced players who have found success beyond Canisius including San Diego Padres pitching prospect Dan Dallas ‘16, and Fran Riordan ‘93 who is the manager of the Oakland Athletics Triple-A team.

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