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Eagles XC coach Belotte given sectional award

January 28, 2009|By Andrew Mason

HEDGESVILLE, W.Va. -- Winning isn't everything.

Just ask Hedgesville's Tim Belotte, who received a letter in the mail last week informing him that the NFHS Coaches Association had named him the 2008 Mideast Sectional Coach of the Year for boys cross country.

The Mideast Section includes Delaware, Kentucky, Maryland, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia and the District of Columbia.

"I got a letter in the mail saying congratulations," said Belotte, who just completed his 13th year as Hedgesville's coach. "But I have no idea how they found out about me or what criteria it took to get this award."

It clearly wasn't about just winning.

Not only did the Eagles not win a state title this fall, they didn't even qualify for the state meet.

"I might be living proof that if you stay in something long enough, you might win an award," Belotte said.

But as he points out, "Cross country is more than a sport."

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Belotte has used the sport to teach life values.

"We try to do more than just encourage the sport of cross country," he said. "Being part of our team, it's not just cross country we try to excel in. We want to be good servants to the community, we want our kids to be mentors to other students.

"It's a lot of hard work, but we try to make things fun. ... It's just all a part of being involved in something."

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