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Warriors' Kreiger resigns

December 06, 2003|by DAN KAUFFMAN

kauffman@herald-mail.com

For 16 seasons, Fred Kreiger's career revolved around coaching hundreds of Boonsboro baseball players. For the next three, it will revolve around coaching his own son and daughter.

Kreiger has made the decision to step down as the Warriors' coach, primarily so he can be there for Fred Kreiger III, a sophomore at North Hagerstown, and Caroline Kreiger, 12, who played fall ball at Hagerstown PONY League.

"That was probably the main reason," said Kreiger of his decision. "I've spent so many years coaching other people's kids, I felt it was time I get to see mine play."

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Kreiger went 203-128 as Boonsboro's coach, guiding the Warriors to the Class 1A state title in 2002.

"I'll miss the relationships and those kinds of things," Kreiger said. "We were very fortunate to win some championships and all those things, and people think that's why you coach, but you coach for the relationships and watching the kids grow up and then come back.

"We've had doctors, teachers, lawyers, architects, engineers, truck drivers on down the line, but they've all turned out to be pretty good people."

Kreiger, 49, started his coaching career at 20 as a sophomore at Frostburg State under coach Bob Wells, who won more than 700 games. Kreiger's career took him to Allegany and South Hagerstown before he finally landed at Boonsboro.

Smith - who played on the Warriors' 1985 state championship team, which Kreiger was an assistant for - spent eight seasons under Kreiger preparing for this opportunity.

"I always knew I wanted to come back and coach," Smith said. "I learned a lot from him, and ... when he was ready to step out of it, I would be ready to step in. It was totally his decision."

Smith said he hopes to carry on Kreiger's tradition of teaching the fundamentals of baseball.

"He's truly a teacher first, that's the one thing he's done better than anybody I've been around is teach the game of baseball and each different aspect," Smith said. "He's worked many clinics and has the experience to teach that. We'd go to clinics and learn new things together and then work them in to what we do.

"The biggest thing is he teaches the game of baseball and he has that passion for the game."

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