Not a day goes by that Dan Sommers doesn’t think about what his team accomplished on Nov. 4 of last year.
The Bishop LeBlond boys soccer team captured the school’s first state championship on the soccer field. It was the highlight of his coaching tenure at LeBlond.
On Tuesday, Sommers announced that tenure was at its end. After nine seasons, Sommers has decided to retire from his post as the Golden Eagles’ head soccer coach.
“It’s a younger man’s gig,” Sommers said. “I put in my time. I think that I did everything that I could do and now it’s time to pass it off.”
During his nine-year stint as LeBlond’s coach, Sommers amassed a 124-81-1 record, three district titles, a fourth-place finish at state and the 2017 Class 1 state championship.
He was named the 2017 News-Press Now fall sports boys coach of the year.
“As you start out, you want to have an impact on these kids’ lives,” Sommers said. “You want them someday to look back and say, ‘That coach was a good guy,’ or, ‘That coach taught me this or taught me that.’ The exact opposite happened. I learned more from those children than I think they might have ever learned from me. It made me a better person by being their coach.”
Starting in 2018, the Golden Eagles made an addition to their uniform to commemorate their 2017 state title. A star now rests above the school crest on the LeBlond uniform. Sommers has faith that more stars will find their way onto the uniform.
“I can see that happening in two or three years with the kids that are coming through,” Sommers said. “These guys can do it. Is there another state championship on the horizon? In my heart of hearts, yes there is.”
According to a press release from the school, LeBlond now will begin a search for its next coach.
“We are very appreciative for all that Coach Sommers did for our soccer program and Bishop LeBlond,” LeBlond Athletic Director Michael Evans said in the release. “He was a tremendous leader who promoted hard work and discipline, which allowed our teams to be successful both on the field and in the classroom. He took a good soccer program when he started and built it into a program that was well respected in Northwest Missouri and across the state. We are thankful for his commitment to Bishop LeBlond and our student athletes.”