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Shore Regional needed a coach to replace its recently retired Hall of Fame leader, and to do so, the Blue Devils have selected a man with first-hand knowledge of the program's championship pedigree.

At Thursday night's Shore Regional High School District Board of Education meeting, the school board approved former Blue Devils' standout Don Klein as the ninth head coach in program history, Shore Regional Athletic Director Harry Chebookjian said.

Klein succeeds the Blue Devils' all-time winningest head coach, Mark Costantino, who retired in December after a tremendous 32-year career in which he led Shore to four NJSIAA sectional championships, 10 division titles, and a 210-118-1 record. He was inducted into the Shore Football Coaches Foundation Hall of Fame in 2015.

Klein had been the head coach at Ocean Township since 2007 and is the program's all-time wins leader, directing the Spartans to four Shore Conference division titles and compiling a 93-75-1 record, including a 10-1 season in 2013. He helped develop current Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Kenny Pickett and current Temple University freshman quarterback Tyler Douglas during his tenure on West Park Avenue. He also coached current Syracuse junior wide receiver Trebor Pena and standout running back Tyler Thompson.

A former quarterback himself, Klein returns to West Long Branch where he played under Costantino and led the Blue Devils to the Class C South division title during his senior year in 1996.

Shore went 6-4 and reached the Central Jersey Group 1 semifinals this past season playing in the Shore Conference Constitution Division with Holmdel, Manasquan, Saint John Vianney, Ocean, and Asbury Park. The Blue Devils will return to competing in a more traditional small-school division this coming fall aligned in the Class D North division with Asbury Park, Keansburg, Keyport, Neptune, New Egypt, and Point Beach.

Shore defeated Ocean, 17-0, in Week 3. The teams will meet again this upcoming season in a non-divisional game in Week 7.

Klein's hiring at Shore fills one open position but creates another as Middletown South, Matawan, and Ocean are currently without head coaches. Legendary head coach Steve Antonucci stepped down at Middletown South in January and Jay Graber left Matawan to become the head coach at Brick Township earlier this month.


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