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Eagles' Keeler finalist for job at new school

East Lake football coach Tom Keeler is one of four finalists for the head coaching job at Nature Coast Technical High School, a new school opening in August in Hernando County.

Keeler, 44, was also in the running for the Pasco High job earlier this year. He has led one of Pinellas County's stronger programs in recent years, with a current streak of three consecutive playoff appearances and a career mark of 43-33 that includes no losing regular seasons.

Keeler said Wednesday he expected a decision soon but declined further comment.

All NCT sports except football are scheduled to begin play on the varsity level. Principal Tizzy Schoelles said Keeler was the runner-up to former Central High coach Steve Crognale when she was on a search committee to replace then-Bears coach Barry Gardner.

The other candidates are Springstead assistant Danny Garofano, Fort Walton Beach assistant Glenn Mayer and Dean Fabritizio, who has worked at Orlando Edgewater and Orlando Bishop Moore.

While in the running for the Pasco job, which was accepted last month by former Bellingham, Mass., coach Dale Caparaso, Keeler said he was looking for an opportunity to teach physical education. At East Lake he has been a longtime science teacher.

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