Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Johnson Back for Second Tour as West Soccer Coach

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Johnson Back for Second Tour as West Soccer Coach

Article excerpt

Bob Johnson, the former soccer coach at St. Charles West High, is also the Warriors' new soccer coach.

"It all happened pretty quickly," Johnson said of his return. "I got a call on Aug. 9 and practice started on the 11th. I asked for a day to think about it and then I talked to (exiting varsity coach) Steve Jolly and (junior-varsity coach) Mike Lane. I heard a lot of good things about this group, so here I am."

Johnson, who stepped down two seasons ago, replaces Jolly, who has taken a job as an assistant pricipal at St. Charles High.

"Steve came to our first practice to explain his situation to the returning players," said Johnson, who had planned to coach the B-team at St. Charles High this season. "It's an adjustment for the players, sure, but I think it's been a fairly smooth transition."

Johnson credits returning assistant coach Kevin Groark with making the transition an easy one.

"Kevin knows the game and the kids really respect him," Johnson said. "He's helped me get an idea of what these guys have done and what they can do. He's getting the kids in shape and he's running some of our practices.

"I'm really looking forward to working with Kevin this season."

The Warriors, who finished 14-7-1 overall and 5-2-1 in the Gateway Athletic Conference a year ago, lost a number of key players to graduation. Still, Johnson sees promise.

"These guys are really working hard; this is one of the hardest-working groups I've ever coached," Johnson said. "We'll rely on a lot of young players, but I think we can have a good year."

Defense figures to be the early-season concern for Johnson. Senior goalkeeper Matt Keen (five shutouts) is back and so is senior stopper Kevin Seay. …

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