HLG soccer coach gets 100th victory
HANNIBAL—The Hannibal-LaGrange College (HLG) men’s soccer program reached a milestone Oct. 6, attaining the 100th victory in program history and the 100th win for head coach David Erskine in a 6-2 victory over Harris-Stowe State University.
Erskine, in his 10th year as head coach with a record of 100-77-14, began his career at HLG in 1998 as the school’s first head men’s and women’s soccer coach. After leading the women’s team to a 1999 NCCAA Regional Championship and an NCCAA National tournament berth, and receiving American Midwest Conference (AMC) Coach of the Year honors, Erskine stepped down from the women’s program following the 2000 season.
Able to focus solely on the men’s soccer program, he has since led the men’s team to six straight post-season appearances, accumulating a 77-35-10 record over that time. The Trojans were AMC regular-season champions in 2006 and finished the year ranked 14th in the nation. In addition, Erskine has received Conference Coach of the Year accolades in 2002 and 2006.
For the milestone win, the hillside and sideline of Blackwell Field were lined with fans holding signs with the number “100” in large print. In the final minute, the crowd began to hold their signs and yell in recognition of the event.
“I first want to thank the Lord that I have been able to be a part of HLG and this program,” Erskine said. “As a coach, I must keep things in perspective. It is merely a victory at a game, namely soccer. There are greater events in life, greater challenges, and thus greater ‘wins.’ With this perspective in mind, in the realm of HLG athletics, this milestone reflects a focused pursuit of excellence and perseverance in that pursuit. It reflects talented players and diligent players coming together over the years to pursue excellence.”
When asked about a more personal reflection, Erskine was again quick to share the accolades.
“Having a winning record over the past 10 years is encouraging to me as a coach,” he said. “It is a validation of the hard work invested into the program by all of those people who have had a hand—or foot—in making this team into what it has become.”
Tom Hufty, vice president for collegiate affairs and athletic administrator, sees more in the Trojan soccer program than just a milestone. “The number in the ‘W’ column is only a small reflection of the impact Coach Erskine has made on the HLG men’s soccer program. Much more than being successful on the field, Coach Erskine desires for his team to have a spiritual experience here at HLG that will change their lives forever.”