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Aleshire hasn't had to cope with many losses

December 13, 2007|By ANDREW MASON

North Hagerstown girls soccer coach Rick Aleshire has been known to get worked up during games.

"I can be an intense coach," he said. "Sometimes I'd get so intense that I'd yell and scream.

"But over the years, I've mellowed out and learned to just enjoy watching the girls play and learn and grow. I don't take the losses as hard as I used to."

Of course, Aleshire hasn't had to deal with many losses lately.

The Hubs followed their 16-1 season in 2006 with a 14-3 campaign this fall, despite losing All-Area stars Courtney Whorten, Allie Snyder and Cara Thompson to graduation. They also captured their fourth straight Washington County title.

"I really wasn't worried. I thought we'd be just as good," said Aleshire, The Herald-Mail's 2007 All-Washington County Girls Soccer Coach of the Year. "We lost three tremendously good ballplayers, but we had some kids that just kind of stepped up."

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The Hubs stepped on their opponents, outscoring them 61-16. They went 9-0 against county teams, allowing only four goals while scoring 39.

Each of their three setbacks was by one goal. They lost 2-1 to eventual Maryland Class 2A West finalist Winters Mill on Oct. 4, 3-2 to Middletown in the MVAL Piedmont championship game Oct. 24 and 2-1 to eventual 2A West champ Century in the region semifinals Nov. 2.

Aleshire, who's coached the Hubs for nine years, said the highlight of the season was beating Century 2-1 on the road Oct. 2.

"That was a knockdown, dragout game that was tremendously well-played on both sides," he said. "The score was 1-1 and then the girls fought so hard to win that game."

North also avenged its loss to Middletown, beating the Knights 1-0 in the 2A West quarterfinals. But then Century avenged its loss to the Hubs in the next round, ending North's season.

"We just fell short," Aleshire said. "I hate that last game of the season, when you know you're not going to be with the girls until next season and you're not going to be with the seniors again because they move on."

He said to expect more good things from his 2008 team.

"I'm losing six seniors, but basically only two starters," he said. "We only have to move two people into positions, and I've got a couple kids on the JV team that are really going to help us.

"We have a pretty good tradition here. We don't teach losing. We make sure the word 'W' is in our vocabulary."

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