At Gibault High School, Darryn Haudrich got the opportunity to play for Jim Corsi and work alongside Matt Reeb, a pair of coaches who helped establish the Hawks as a statewide name in boys soccer.
Haudrich will now get the chance to make his own mark as head coach at Gibault.
Haudrich was named coach of the Hawks on Monday afternoon, replacing Reeb who resigned earlier this year to accept an assistant coaching position at Alderson Broaddus University in Philippi, W.Va.
“When Matt left, it was a surprise,” Haudrich said, “but thinking about it more and more, I saw it as a great opportunity for me to step into a leadership role myself.
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“Take that next challenge and furthermore my own soccer coaching career.”
A 2002 graduate of Gibault, Haudrich started coaching for the Hawks as an assistant under Corsi in 2010 before spending the past six seasons on Reeb’s staff and as head coach of the school’s junior varsity.
The 2016 version of the Hawks finished third at the Class 1A state tournament. In Reeb’s six seasons the Hawks were 80-43-13 and won a state title in 2013.
Before that, Corsi established the Hawks as a powerhouse, going 275-182-32 over 20 seasons, including consecutive Class 1A state championships in 2005, 2006 and 2007.
Corsi led the Hawks to state seven times overall. His first team to reach state was in 2001 when it placed third and featured Haudrich as one of its starting halfbacks.
“Playing for Coach Corsi, those were probably the best playing days I had,” said Haudrich, who went on to play one year of college soccer at Lindenwood University, followed by three more at Quincy University. “Coming full circle and coaching with Coach Corsi was pretty neat, then to have the privilege to work with Matt for the past six years.
“That’s been quite the blessing as well. He brought a lot of things to the program that I fully intend to continue.”
Gibault Principal Russ Hart indicated the decision to promote Haudrich was not difficult.
“We wanted a coach who was familiar with the program and who was passionate and enthusiastic about the game,” Hart said. “Darryn has been playing soccer since he was 5 years old. He played at Gibault under IHSA Hall of Fame coach Jim Corsi and has seven years of coaching experience.
“With Coach Haudrich, we will be able to provide the continuity of a successful program with a seamless transition.”
The Hawks will graduate their top three goal-scorers — Ben Mueth, Dalton Scace and Kyle Rocca — from last fall, along with starting goalkeeper Trevor Davis. With seven goals and 13 assists, sophomore Karson Huels should be the top player back for the Hawks on the offensive end.
“I know the dynamics of the team will change quite a bit,” Haudrich said, “but what is nice is a lot of these boys I have been working with for the last three years on JV, so we know each other very well.”
While in college, Haudrich earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology and a master’s degree in community agency counseling. He works for Human Support Services in Waterloo.
Haudrich also is one of the co-founders of the Southern Illinois Revolution Soccer Club.