North Point soc­cer makes coach­ing changes

DeCook now boys head coach af­ter 8 sea­sons as girls head coach, girls as­sis­tant Webb now head coach

Maryland Independent - - Sports - By AJ MA­SON aj­ma­son@somd­news.com

Doug DeCook re­mem­bers when he took over the North Point girls soc­cer team in 2008. He re­mem­bers the in-county bat­tles and when striv­ing for con­fer­ence ti­tles ev­ery sea­son.

Af­ter eight sea­sons as the pro­gram’s head coach, DeCook can now look back on an ac­com­plished feat at the helm, lead­ing the Ea­gles to two South­ern Mary­land Ath­letic Con­fer­ence ti­tles with a com­bined over­all record of 82-30-5 (.722 win­ning per­cent­age) and a con­fer­ence mark of 71-21-4 (.760 win­ning per­cent­age).

How­ever, DeCook isn’t go­ing any­where. He was re­cently hired as the Ea­gles’ new head boys soc­cer coach, re­plac­ing former front­man Don Moss, who was at the helm for three sea­sons.

Kiante Webb, who was the as­sis­tant coach un­der DeCook for the last two sea­sons, was named the girls head coach.

“I al­ways imag­ined my­self be­com­ing a teacher and coach­ing the boys soc­cer pro­gram,” said DeCook, who was hired in May. “I wouldn’t take back coach­ing the girls team, but the po­si­tion opened up four years ago when [former head coach Gary Lesko] left. I didn’t feel it was the right time to leave the girls pro­gram at the time. Now that the job has opened up again, I talked to my wife, fam­ily and friends and de­cided that I would re­gret not ap­ply­ing for the po­si­tion this time around.”

DeCook is ex­cited to take over an Ea­gles boys team that fin­ished with a 6-7 over­all, 5-1 in the SMAC Po­tomac Di­vi­sion, in 2015.

“I will bring in a sim­i­lar phi­los­o­phy,” DeCook said. “Our goal is to make each player bet­ter both on the field and off the field. The end goal is to get our play­ers to the next level and help them learn and to re­spect the game. It will be hard work, but cham­pi­onships are built on

a solid foun­da­tion and hard work by all mem­bers in the pro­gram. We of course have goals to be­come a SMAC con­tender and then have a good show­ing in the 4A re­gional play­offs.”

DeCook guided North Point’s girls pro­gram to 10 or more wins in five of his eight sea­sons. The other three were all nine-win cam­paigns.

While DeCook and the Ea­gles es­tab­lished them­selves as the team to beat in Charles County in re­cent years, they also made noise within the SMAC ranks, pep­pered with peren­nial state tour­na­ment teams such as Calvert, Hunt­ing­town and Leonard­town.

The pro­gram’s best sea­son came in 2014 when they fin­ished a per­fect 12-0 dur­ing the reg­u­lar sea­son and claimed the SMAC ti­tle, but North Point was up­set by Anne Arun­del County’s South River in the Class 4A East Re­gion play­offs in penalty kicks. In 2012, the Ea­gles won a share of the SMAC crown with Calvert, Hunt­ing­town and Leonard­town.

2015 saw the Ea­gles girls fin­ish 11-6 over­all, fall­ing to Leonard­town in the SMAC ti­tle game and 4A East sec­tion fi­nal, and claim the SMAC Po­tomac Di­vi­sion ti­tle with a 6-0 record.

“It’s tough to give away some­thing that you help built and saw rise from no se­nior class to be­ing SMAC cham­pi­ons and ex­celling in the re­gional play­offs,” DeCook said, “but Kiante Webb has been in our girls pro­gram for the past [two] sea­sons and he will do a fine job with the pro­gram. Know­ing that it’s go­ing to some­one who cares about the girls and the pro­gram makes it a much eas­ier process.”

Webb, a long­time coach in club soc­cer in Calvert County and a na­tive of Charles County, was elated to now take over the girls pro­gram for his first-ever coach­ing po­si­tion.

“This has been my dream job to coach in Charles County,” he said. “The goals won’t change, me and Doug have a great re­la­tion­ship. The only dif­fer­ence is that ev­ery­thing is go­ing to run through me. Our motto is, ‘One fam­ily, one unit.’” Webb’s re­la­tion­ship with the girls is al­ready strong. “Most of th­ese girls I’ve coached since they were fresh­men,” he said. “‘I just want to be able to change the cul­ture within the county and help the South­ern Mary­land com­mu­nity grow in soc­cer. I want to be the voice. The main goal is to ball out. The girls al­ready know how to play soc­cer, I’m just there to give them ex­tra mo­ti­va­tion.”

Doug DeCook, left, re­cently stepped down as North Point’s head girls soc­cer coach af­ter eight sea­sons and will take over the reins of the boys team. He led the Ea­gles to two SMAC ti­tles and had 10 or more wins in five of eight sea­sons at the helm.

SUB­MIT­TED PHOTO

Kiante Webb was re­cently hired as the new head coach of the North Point girls soc­cer team, re­plac­ing Doug DeCook, who stepped down af­ter eight sea­sons to be­come the school’s head boys soc­cer coach. Webb was the as­sis­tant un­der DeCook for the last two sea­sons.

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