Boys’ soccer’s Morris retires from coaching


Daniel Sweeney, Staff Writer

   The whistle blows, and the Poway sideline cheers. Poway’s soccer team returns to the sideline, having just beat Eastlake in CIF, and their coach Gene Morris brings them all in a circle, they put their hands together and call out, Poway on me, Poway on three!

   Now, with their beloved coach leaving, the team reflects on the impact he had on the program in his time, with his soccer journey starting when he himself played for our soccer team. His favorite moment was when in 2008 they won the CIF championship.

   Varsity soccer player, senior Benicio Viramontes, played for Morris and was motivated to keep playing by him. 

   “He definitely brought us together as a team more. Towards the beginning of the season none of us would know each other very well. He had more of a lasting impact on who we are as a full cohesive team,” Viramontes said. 

   Morris helped senior and captain Nick Nugent overcome his issues with confidence. Nugent said Morris provided him with someone who believed in him. 

   “Coach Gene was almost more than a coach, he was almost like a father figure to us.He would always be looking out for us, whether it’s on or off the field,” Nugent said.

   Morris took a friendly approach to coaching, connecting with players by treating them not only as athletes but as people too.

   After 25 years coaching the team, and having given up coaching softball the previous season, Morris decided to retire from his position, with the intention to take it easier, relax and enjoy life.

   He would like to see another coach come in that keeps traditions going, maybe an alumni. Over 25 years, he learned that “It’s not all about winning. We won championships, we could finish in last place, we won more than we lost, but it’s just awesome,” Morris said

    Over time, he said it became more about the relationships with the athletes, the parents and the community.

   “He’s had a tremendous impact on our program, he has dedication and support and has helped in mentoring all these young men, who over the past 25 years have been outstanding,” Athletic Director Damian Gonzalez said.

   So far, the school is still in the process of applications for a replacement, although Morris will still work on campus as a supervisor