Even after losing two of the best players in program history, Webster's women's soccer team…
The Sporting Insider: “Mr. 200”
Two hundred wasn’t the figure Luigi Scire wanted to focus on in the aftermath of his 200th career victory. After the Webster University women’s soccer team buried Monmouth College (Ill.) 3-0 on Saturday, Sept. 8 at St. Louis Soccer Park, Scire couldn’t help but think of a different, perhaps more meaningful number: 130.
As in 130 student athletes who have played for the Webster women’s soccer program during Scire’s 13-plus years as the team’s coach. Scire established the women’s soccer program in 1999 and has been the squad’s only head coach.
Scire knows he wouldn’t have secured win No. 200 this rapidly without the contributions of all the players — past and current — who have worn a Webster jersey.
Those who are familiar with Scire know he absolutely loathes talking about himself. He uses the word “I” rarely; he uses the word “we” often. Win 200, as Scire sees it, isn’t a personal achievement. Rather, it’s a culmination of all the hard work he, his assistant coaches and his players have put into the program.
Scire isn’t the type of person who likes bragging about his career records and numbers. So, I’ll do it for him.
Scire has earned 200 collegiate wins in more than 13 years of work. That’s an average of 15.2 victories per season. None of his teams have finished a season with a record below .500.
His St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference numbers are eye-popping. He’s compiled a 115-12-2 SLIAC record, good for a .899 winning percentage. Only once has one of his squads lost three conference games in a season. The Gorloks have won eight conference championships and Scire has been named SLIAC Coach of the Year five times.
Only a handful of people know Scire better than women’s soccer associate head coach Mike Hutchison. When Scire began coaching the women’s team in ’99, Hutchison was there. When the Gorloks took the field for the 2012 season, Hutchison was there.
The two have become inseparable. It’s impossible to praise Scire’s accomplishments without acknowledging all that Hutchison, a 2011 Webster Athletics Hall of Fame inductee, has done for the program. Hutchison said once Scire got to win 199, he wanted to get No. 200 over and done with.
“I don’t think he wants the spotlight or the limelight to be totally on him,” Hutchison said. “I think he wants it to be on the team.”
And the number 130. Scire referred to that figure several times after his 200th victory, and for good reason. Scire has had 130 excellent student athletes come through his program, as evidenced by Scire’s winning percentage and his teams’ perennially-high GPA.
And those 130 student athletes have had one excellent coach. I’ve been able to watch Scire coach during practices and games for the past three-plus years, and the undying passion he displays for his players and his sport is truly awe-inspiring.
So, congratulations to Scire on his 200th victory.
And here’s to the next 200.