Needless to say, we have experienced a crazy 8 months! Dating back to the end of our Winter Athletics Season 19/20, and the beginning of our last memory of a normal Spring Sports Season 2020, we welcomed some new coaches into the RM Athletics Department. Some New Hires were getting ready to make their Spring debuts, some coaches were hired right before we left school in March, and some were hired over the last 8 months while we’ve been out of school. Some coaches are new to coaching, some coaches are new to RM, some coaches were in a JV role at RM and are now taking over the Varsity program and some were just ready to be a part of #Rocketnation and ready to spread that #RocketPride! Either way, I’d like to properly introduce our last 9 coaching hires that either missed out coaching last Spring, this Fall or this Winter. You’ve met most of them by now during our Virtual Athletic Seasons, but again, and officially, Welcome to RM Coaches!
Nick Pak, Head Coach, JV Baseball:
Coach Pak was born and raised in Montgomery County, MD and has played baseball since he was a 11 years old. He once dreamed of being a star in the MLB, but life doesn’t always go as planned. Coach Pak went to Northwest High School and spent 4 years on the varsity team. After graduating from Northwest, Coach Pak went to Towson where he studied Sports Management and played 4 years on the Club Baseball Team at Towson. Coach Pak developed a passion for coaching Baseball when he started as a volunteer coach at RM. As a player, Coach Pak realized how much of an impact his coaches had on his life and he hopes to be able to do the same thing for his players, while providing a great baseball experience for all members of his Baseball family.
Sarah Montesino, Head Coach, Varsity Field Hockey:
Coach Sarah Montesino is a second generation Richard Montgomery field hockey player, and a 2010 RM Graduate. She grew up in Woodley Gardens and is a proud Woodley Wave! Coach Montesino attended Charleston Southern University and studied Kinesiology. Coach is a Center Support Specialist at NovaCare Rehabiliation, a physical therapy company and works on the admin side. Montesino has been the head JV FH coach and assistant Varsity coach for the last 5 years and was really honored and excited to step into this new role as the Varsity coach this Fall. She a 3 year old daughter, Harper, who you all will most likely see ordering her husband Kris around at some point in the season!
Randy Thompson, Head Coach, Varsity Football:
Coach Thompson comes to RM from Sherwood High School, where he ran one of the more traditionally successful JV Football programs in MCPS. Coach Thompson has coached football in MCPS for the last 15 years, including time at Paint Branch, Watkins Mill and Sherwood.
Thompson was the JV Football Head Coach at Watkins Mill for 5 seasons (30-15) and most recently at Sherwood where he amassed an overall record of (43-5) over 6 years. Coach Thompson was also the JV Lacrosse Coach at Paint Branch for 2 years and the Varsity Lacrosse Coach at Watkins Mill for 4 years. In addition, Coach Thompson gets it done on the hardwood as well, being the JV Basketball Coach at Watkins Mill for 3 years and at Sherwood High School for 4 years. Thompson brings a broad and extensive coaching mind to RM where he will also teach PE and work with the Alt 1 Program.
Coach Thompson attended undergrad at Clemson and James Madison University, and graduated in 2003 with a degree in Kinesiology. Thompson is a Sherwood HS graduate and his wife Caitlin and he have two children, Shane & Addison. He is excited about the opportunity to work and coach at RM!
Matt Schwartzback, Head Coach, JV Football:
Coach Schwartzback was born and raised in the Rockville/Richard Montgomery community. During Schwartzback’s football career at Rockville High School, he started 3 years on his varsity football team on the offensive line and served as captain for 2 years. He has been coaching football for 12 years. Prior to coaching at RM, Schwartzback coached at Northwest HS as the JV offensive coordinator and several other local schools like Rockville HS and Watkins Mill HS. His first job right out of high school was for RM as the JV defensive coordinator. 7 years later Coach would find himself right back where he started, back at RM. In 2015 Coach Schwartzback began the development of, what is now known as, the Julius West Middle School Rockets. Currently, the JV Roster consists 71% of JWMS Football Players! During the 2019 RM season, Coach Schwartzback served as the Varsity QB’s coach and the JV Offensive Coordinator where they had a 8-0 record and outscored our opponents 363-43 in 8 games averaging 45 points a game.
Rachael Green, Head Coach, JV Cheerleading:
Coach Green has been a teacher in MCPS for 10 years. She fell in love with the RM cluster after working at Julius West for 4 years teaching math. She currently teaches at Tilden but is beyond excited to be the new JV Cheer coach at RM and to build a strong program working together with Coach Tanya. Her positive high school cheer experience is what drives her to create a positive, lasting experience for future students through Cheering. She looks forward to being part of the RM community and seeing old students at athletic events. GO ROCKETS!!
Akshay Gandhi, Head Coach, Swim and Dive:
Coach Gandhi has spent the majority of his life in and around pools and schools! He grew up here in Rockville and attended Wotton High school where he was a swimmer and team Captain. He also swam and coached for the Stonebridge Sharks summer team and was a member of the RMSC National Training Group. After graduation, Coach Gandhi attended the University of Maryland – College Park where he was a team member and Vice President of the Club Swim team. After college graduation, Coach Gandhi earned a masters degree and began teaching and coaching in the Annapolis area. Gandhi taught at Annapolis High and coached their swim team for many years. While in Annapolis, he also coached the Bay Ridge Marlins Swim Team and the Naval Academy Aquatics Club. Recently, Coach Gandhi returned home to Rockville and began teaching at RM, coaching the National Training Group at RMSC, and coaching at Tallyho during the summers. As the new RMHS Swim & Dive coach, he is ready to bring all these years of experience and energy to Rocketnation! Either in the school teaching or at the pool coaching he is always thinking about Chlorine…”
Jamaal Schools, Head Coach, JV Boys Basketball:
A Rockville, Maryland native, Coach Schools proudly followed in the footsteps of the many great student-athletes that came out of his hometown, Lincoln Park. As an Alumni of RM 98’, he hopes to continue spreading and instilling that RocketPride that he carries with him to this day. After graduating from RM, Coach Schools attended Montgomery College, where he played basketball and then continued on while studying Physical Education at Messiah College & Norfolk State University. He currently resides in Montgomery County with his wife and huge supporter Yvette, their son Jabari and daughter Jordyn.
As a Montgomery County Public School employee for 15 years, Coach Schools thrives on seeing and being a part of the development of the students in and out of the classroom. Schools is currently a proud member of the RM Security Team. Prior to working security at RM, Coach Schools was a security member and para at a few middle schools in MCPS where he also served as the MS Head basketball Coach. Simultaneously, Coach Schools has been involved with Montgomery College Athletics for over 10 years, coaching both Boys and Girls Basketball, Cross Country and Track & Field. He was the head coach of the Montgomery College Cross Country and Track & Field program for 7 years, while acting as a top Assistant for the Boys and Girls Basketball teams. One of Schools biggest achievements was being named the Head Basketball Coach of The Rockville Victors for its first 6 seasons. The Rockville Victors are a semi-professional basketball team representing our community, founded by a couple other RM Athletics Alum. When Coach Schools isn’t coaching, you can find him volunteering at the Lincoln Park CC where he spends hours giving back to the community. Coach Schools also currently serves as an RM Assistant Athletic Director and Assistant Track & Field Coach. Go Rockets!
Bob Maggio, Head Coach, Varsity Girls Lacrosse:
Bob Maggio has been coaching girls lacrosse for 13 years. He started with Rockville Girls Lacrosse in 2008 which transitioned to MC Elite Lacrosse in 2014. Most recently he has been coaching the 2022 & 2027 Midnight Teams. Maggio holds a US Lacrosse Level 3 Certification and has been on the Board of Directors for MC Elite since 2017. Coach Maggio has also spent the past 5 seasons with Richard Montgomery Lacrosse. Four years as a Volunteer Assistant helping RM win the 2018 & 2019 West Division and last season was his 1st year as the Head Coach for our JV Girls Lacrosse team, before becoming our Varsity Coach just a few months later.
Maggio has been a Rockville resident for the past 20 years. His wife Julie is Co-President of the RM Booster Club and his daughter Caroline graduated from RM in 2020 and currently attends Clemson University. Just happens to be the same university Coach Maggio attended. His youngest daughter, Lindsay, is a junior at RM. He works in Medical Sales for Mammotome. He is also Co-VP for the RM Booster Club.
Claire Hannan, Head Coach, JV Girls Basketball:
Coach Hannan is very excited to work with the Junior Varsity Girls Basketball Team. She has been coaching with the RM program for the last two years as an assistant coach for the varsity girls team. Previously, Hannan coached high school basketball at the Academy of the Holy Cross for three years as the varsity assistant coach and three years as the varsity head coach, 1989-1996). She coached both her son and daughter in youth sports through the City of Rockville and the Catholic Youth Organization, and coached in the AAU Maryland Flames organization and Classics Organization for about 8 years.
Coach Hannan played high school basketball in the D.C. area at Immaculata Preparatory School, Class of 1985. She played Division I college basketball and softball at Wagner College, Staten Island. As a senior co-captain of the Wagner basketball team, Hannan helped lead Wagner to a 22-7 record and the Northeast Conference championship title, as well as being named to the Northeast All-Conference team. Coach Hannan was also all conference in softball, and still holds the Wagner record for career stolen bases after 30 years! Coach Hannans daughter now plays lacrosse at Wagner College, so Seahawks run in the family!
Coach Hannan looks forward to sharing her LOVE OF THE GAME with the RM community!
Welcome to RM Athletics, and Let’s Go Rockets! #RocketPride