DeMasters, Oak Mountain honored by NSCAA
Published 2:27 pm Wednesday, June 29, 2016
By BAKER ELLIS / Sports Editor
The awards just keep rolling in for this Oak Mountain boys soccer team. Head coach Dan DeMasters, who led Oak Mountain to an undefeated 28-0-2 mark this past spring, has been named the National Soccer Coaches Association of America’s Coach of the Year for large schools in Alabama. Oak Mountain, by comparison, also finished the year as the No. 1 team in the country according to the NCSAA.
The NSCAA came out with a number of polls over the year, and in the final two polls, which came out on May 31 and June 21 respectively, the Eagles were ranked as the top team in the country. DeMasters however just recently found out that he had won the Coach of the Year award.
“I was shocked, surprised, happy,” DeMasters said when he found out he had won the award. “A lot of emotions ran through my head. It’s a testament to the guys, really. I keep saying over and over again. With our goalie and back line of all seniors, having Hunter (Holstad) be the captain and the guy in the middle for us, seven underclassmen who were selfless all season, it’s them. It’s the kids that did it. I just managed them.”
The NSCAA is one of the many organizations across the country that ranks soccer teams and doles out awards. However, DeMasters says this is the one that means the most, because the NSCAA ranks teams not only based on computer math, but bona fide human interaction and voting by a qualified committee.
“This is the real deal,” DeMasters said. “In order of prestige, the NSCAA is the one. It’s humbling to be rewarded for something like that. It’s a testament to the kids, again, and the work and the sacrifice they put in. And to the community and the school as well that supported us over the season.”
Helena head boys coach Zach Morgan has been named the small school Coach of the Year by the NCSAA, and together the two coached their respective teams to a combined 46-7-4 record, and both won state titles.
Per the NSCAA, a coach must possess knowledge of the game, show rapport with the team, have a positive team image, exhibit positive conduct on the field, have community and outside involvement including clinics, camps and banquets and show respect for other coaches, officials and media to be eligible to win a Coach of the Year award.
For more information on the NSCAA, visit NSCAA.com.