Stouffer schedules retirement

June 01, 2012|By TIM KOELBLE |
  • Stan Stouffer is on the doorstep of retirement, ending a long career as boys soccer coach and athletic director at Williamsport High School.
By Kevin G. Gilbert/Staff Photographer

WILLIAMSPORT — At the end of the month, Stan Stouffer will be able to wake up and start his day without worrying about spending the endless hours it takes to be a high school athletic director.

Stouffer, who turns 66 in August, will spend a final month as Williamsport’s A.D., starting a smooth transition of power to his unnamed predecessor before his retirement.

With that, he will leave a job that he got just by writing a simple letter in 2007 after a stellar career as the Wildcats’ boys varsity soccer coach.

“It’s just the right time,” said Stouffer of his retirement. “I want to thank the people that gave me a chance to still be a part of athletics.”

Stouffer amassed a career record of 231-101-7 in 23 years as the Wildcats’ coach, including state championships in 1979 and 1996. His teams won eight West region titles and had six appearances in the state championship game.

Richard Doub was the father of Williamsport soccer, but Stouffer picked it up and heightened the program.

“I always got my motivation from Rich Doub,” said Stouffer. “And, along the way, I always had excellent assistant coaches.”

Stouffer graduated from South Hagerstown in 1964 and Shepherd College in 1968, after spending two years at Hagerstown Junior College.

And he was not an athlete.

“I was an all-state percussionist in the band program,” mused Stouffer.

After serving in the Army from 1968-70, which included a tour in Vietnam, Stouffer returned home to spend one year teaching at North Hagerstown before he found his “lifetime home at Williamsport.”

Even though he knew little to nothing about soccer, Stouffer became a junior varsity coach in 1972.

“I knew the basics but I read books, watched other coaches and went to clinics,” said Stouffer. “I got a lot of help from Ron Baker and Jack Rupp.”

Stouffer recalled some memorable moments and listed a 2-1 overtime victory against Middletown in 1979 at the top of the list because he had never beaten the Knights previously.

Stouffer left his position in 1984 to concentrate on teaching, but eventually returned to the post in 1990 until he left again in 2003.

“The time to teach in the classroom was becoming more demanding,” he said.

When the teaching schedules came out in 2007-08, Stouffer thought it would be the year he would retire.

But Adrian Custer was leaving as Williamsport athletic director to concentrate on his post as varsity football coach.

“I talked to my wife, thought about it, and wrote a letter expressing interest in the position, but not really thinking I’d have any chance,” said Stouffer. “People think it’s an easy job, but it’s more than just unlocking the gym door. There are multiple challenges in coordinating details, like scheduling, busses and game nights.”

Shortly, Stouffer will be picking up some of the duties around the house.

“I’ll be able to help her out,” said Stouffer of his wife, Karen, a second-grade teacher at Boonsboro Elementary School. “I’ll also be able to get to meetings in organizations I belong to and to do some church work.”

Stouffer said he’d like to help advance plans for a new weight room at the high school.

All things considered, it wasn’t a bad career for a percussionist.

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