Though only 23 years old, new Hylton boys soccer coach Wes Homan has a wealth of experience on area sidelines.
The George Mason University graduate, who finished his playing career as a center midfielder at Osbourn Park High School in 1997, assisted with Brentsville’s boys team in 2000 and 2001 and with Hylton’s girls team last year.
“I like most everything about him,” said Chip Rohr, Homan’s former boss at Brentsville. “He has a good background in the game, a good background as a player. He’s been at several layers and several areas in coaching; he’s worked for a few years at my soccer camp.
“Because he’s young he has a good sense of what’s on the mind of young people. At camp, he did a good job of being the coach, not the player’s buddy — though he got along well with the players. He was able to separate himself on the level that one has to separate himself.”
Homan takes over for Troy Washington, who is working on his master’s degree in special education. Hylton activities director Jim Qualls told Homan on Feb. 6 that the job was his.
“I wasn’t really looking for it,” Homan said. “I just found out about the opportunity, so I decided to put my name in the hat and see what happened.”
Last year, the Bulldogs went 6-7-2 overall, 2-3-1 in the Cardinal District as they missed the Northwest Region tournament for the first time since 1992 and had their worst record in the program’s 11-year history.
In 2001, also under Washington, Hylton went 16-4-1, 6-0-1. Washington played for the Bulldogs’ 1994 Group AAA state champions.
“I just want us to be a team that competes every game, gives it our best effort and represents Hylton well,” Homan said.
Current Forest Park coach Ken Krieger won two national and four state titles with the Bulldogs. In the first nine seasons of the Hylton boys soccer program (1992-2000), Krieger went 172-15-8.
“I think unfortunately the name’s probably not as high as it once was,” Homan said of the Hylton soccer tradition. “I look at it as a challenge and hopefully we can get back to the top.”
Homan works at Hylton as a student attendant, aiding an autistic pupil. Qualls believes the Bulldogs have hired a coach with a promising future.
“He will be good for the program,” Qualls said. “He’s young, enthusiastic and he knows soccer.”