Story by Phil Marshall
Coming off a 3-7 record last year, the Hawks Women's Soccer team is looking to grow in the program's 3rd year of existence. With the leadership of Coach Clifton Williams, the program enters year three with many expectations. "I would love to see this team go above .500," Williams said.
Williams is a 1985 graduate of Hagerstown Community College and has over 30 years of experience in soccer. He is a member of the United States Soccer Federation (USSF), Maryland State Your Soccer Association (MSYSA) and the National Federation Interscholastic Coaches Education Program. He is also the West Virginia Soccer District One Commissioner of the Eastern Panhandle. Williams has devoted his entire life to the sport and hopes for a season where all players can be their best self on and off the field.
"Recruiting is a big deal in this sport," he said. "Finding girls coming out of high school that are ready to play is hard to find because they feel like they have to be a superstar just to make the team."
Williams always looks for recruits that have desire and dedication. "It doesn't matter how talented you are, if you don't put in the hard work and do what you are supposed to do on and off the field, you won't play," he said. "Character and maturity, as well as getting good grades and graduating are much more important to me."
Four players are returning for their 2nd season and they are poised to improve on last season. Williams believes their biggest challenges this season will be keeping the players healthy. "Last year we started with 17 on our roster and we ended the season with only 11 players and two of those 11 weren't 100 percent," he said. "If we can stay healthy, I have no doubt that we can improve our record this year and be a contender."
As for the players, they are focused on learning the tactics of strategizing each game and being creative. "A lot of team bonding will be needed to have a successful season," Williams said. "You want to see these players grow and eventually transfer into four year programs."
The Hawks will begin their 2019 campaign on Saturday August 24 at 1pm at home against Christendom College.