Emington returns as Reed City boys soccer coach

REED CITY — Doug Emington well remembers his first stint as Reed City boys soccer coach.

Emington was named coach earlier this year.

“When I came here 23 years ago they told me they had an offer I couldn’t refuse,” he said. “It was a teaching job and I was also going to coach the soccer team. At that time it was coed. They had just come off a year of their first official year. I did it for 14 years after that. It went from a coed varsity team to a separate JV-varsity coed to a separate boys and girls team.”

Emington left the coaching position but returned to the sport in recent years to help out with the girls program. The boys coaching job opened and he decided to apply.

In his previous stint, Emington had a chance to watch the program grow.

“We got a little more successful as time went on,” he said. “They started to win some conference championships. We won three years ago when at that time, it was the Western Waterways Activities Conference. We won a district in 1999, the first district trophy for our school.”

Emington hopes to put some stability into the Coyote soccer program as a coach. He’s the fifth coach in the past five seasons.

“My goal would be to find somebody I could mentor to stick around for the long haul and take the program to where it could go from here,” Emington said.

Practices started on Aug. 10 but Emington is having open field sessions 7-8:30 p.m. three days a week during the summer.

“Tuesdays and Thursdays, we’re having open fields, which are open to anyone who wants to show up from the area,” he said. “It’s student run and monitored by the adults. They have pickup games. It gives kids a chance to kick the ball around. On Wednesday, it’s a mostly small-sized games. We want kids to get touches on the ball and learn a little bit about playing without getting too serious. The summer activities are voluntary.”

Emington teaches elementary school physical education. He expects to have a young soccer team this fall.

“We only have two returning seniors that I’ve seen so far and a lot of incoming freshman,” Emington said. “My goal is to have the numbers up again so they can have a JV team.”