Bill Bock named Arizona Youth Soccer Association Coach of the Yearby Andy Morales on Jan. 31, 2013, under Sports
The Arizona Youth Soccer Association (AYSA) awarded local volunteer coach Bill Bock the honor of Coach of the Year at their annual meeting held at the Francisco Grande Resort & Soccer Complex in Casa Grande this past weekend.
Bock is the head coach of the CDO Soccer Club’s 97 Gold Team and he earned his award in the Competitive Girls Division.
CDO Soccer Club director of coaching Steve Wallace characterized Bock as someone who, “Epitomizes the sort of person and the sort of coach we’re looking to have teach the kids at CDO Soccer Club.”
A major factor in honoring Bock was how he and his team handled a difficult situation at the Region IV President’s Cup this past summer in Aurora, Colorado. Evidently, the 97 Gold team was waiting for a team from Alaska to play against them in the second round.
The Alaskan team was delayed due to an accident and they missed the 15-minute deadline which normally would have resulted in a forfeit by Alaska. Had Bock’s team accepted the forfeit, they would have automatically qualified for the next phase of the tournament.
Bock spoke with his players and they all agreed that a forfeit was not in the spirit of competition so they waited for Alaska after the tournament committee agreed to waive the rules.
“The committee told me it was up to me because it was the last game of the day,” explained Bock. “The field was open and the refs said they would stay. I knew we could have won with a forfeit but it didn’t matter to me because we came to play and win based on merit – not a forfeit,” he added.
“I would hope that if it was my team stuck behind an accident that another coach would show me the same courtesy and sportsmanship.”
The delayed match resulted in a 1-1 draw and the CDO club was eventually eliminated from play on a point differential after they tied Sacramento the next day. Alaska went on and qualified.
The sportsmanship displayed by the team was recognized by Liberty Mutual and it was included in their Top 10 Responsible Sports Moments for 2012.
“Our daughter Sammy had the great pleasure of playing for Bill’s first team over 8 years ago when he stepped up to volunteer to coach a local AYSO team that needed a coach,” said local parent and former University of Arizona football standout Bill Nettling.
“Bill had a tremendous influence on her and hundreds of other young girls who play soccer and other sports. I can tell you story upon story of how he helped girls learn to love the game including he and his wife Diane holding informal skill and friendly game sessions on Sundays at James Kreigh Park where girls and boys of all ages and skills were invited to come out and play. Many of these girls have now developed into tremendously skilled soccer players,” Nettling added.
“I was surprised and was told that I went beyond the call of duty in many aspects,” said Bock. “I was just trying to do the best job I could. I was humbled because there are a lot of good competitive coaches in the state. I was very honored.”
Bock’s daughters, Kirstin and Sarah, both play soccer for Ironwood Ridge.