The Staples softball team will have its third coach in three years as Luigi Cammarota was named to be Charlie Judge’s successor by athletic director Marty Lisevick this week, but an element of continuity will remain with the program.

Cammarota served as Judge’s assistant for four years at Trumbull and a fifth at Staples, and is excited to build upon a step forward the program took — which included a 10-10 season — in 2014. Cammarota brings a wealth of experience from years coaching softball from Little League, travel and summer ball.

Cammarota said he’s excited to keep the momentum going from last year in his first varsity job, noting that he believes this group has a drive to compete at the highest level.

“I think it’s going to be important that the kids gel together,” Cammarota said. “There’s a lot of comradery on this team; I think we left off in a good place last year. They really wanted that state win and they’re going to back working hard again.”

His Daughter, Nicole, was pitcher for the Eagles in 2010 while Cammarota was on staff and the team advanced to the Class LL quarterfinals. Staples faced Trumbull last spring in the first round of the state tournament, but lost a back-and-forth game in the late innings.

Staples dropped three games by a run during the season and had to forfeit another game against Westhill as the team was unable to field enough players.

“If we hold on to those leads we’re 13-7 and it’s a whole diferent season,” Cammarota said. “A lot of things change.”

The numbers are expected to increase this year enough to have a JV squad, according to Cammarota.

Judge left the team under controversial circumstances earlier this fall, but Cammarota noted the influence Judge had on him and the team.

“He was very happy for me and that was the whole idea honestly,” Cammarota said. “When he came to Staples he called me and offered me the assistant position. It was nice to be back with him; I learned a lot from that man. He gave me his blessing.”

Cammarota will take over program that will also get an infusion in talent from the youth level over the next several seasons. The Little League team enjoyed a run to the state final and the U-10 team won a state championship.

Staples graduated just one player from last season’s group, meaning almost the entire team will be back to work with Cammarota for a second straight year.

“That’s what where I’m going to be very lucky,” Cammarota said. “I’m excited for the opportunity.”