Cartolaro retires as Parry McCluer hoops coach

34-year career on the sidelines included 5 state championships

Mike Cartolaro during a Parry McCluer practice in 2021 (WSLS)

ROANOKE, Va. – “It was a hard decision.”

Parry McCluer head boys basketball coach Mike Cartolaro has retired from coaching. While he described it as a hard decision to make, Cartolaro said it was necessary during a brief phone conversation with 10 Sports. While his coaching whistle has been put down for good, he will continue to serve as the athletic director at the home of the Fighting Blues-- a role he’s had since the 2016-2017 school year.

A Parry McCluer grad himself, Cartolaro spent a total of 34 years as coaching at five different schools. He racked up 600 wins and five VHSL state titles, the most recent coming in 2021 with the Fighting Blues.

Parry McCluer wins the 2021 VHSL Class 1 Boys State Championship (WSLS)

Cartolaro had a stint at Altavista high school that lasted more than two decades. During that time, he won four Class 1 state championships and two runner-up finishes. One of his standout student-athletes is current Kansas City Chiefs defensive back and Super Bowl LIV champion Juan Thornhill. He was recently inducted into the Colonels Hall of Fame.

About the Author:

Eric is no stranger to the Roanoke Valley. He is a Roanoke native and proud graduate of William Fleming High School.