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By Katherine Bauer, Xavier junior
CEDAR RAPIDS – Nobody is more excited about today’s state soccer tournament than Bailey Dorrington, Xavier’s first-year coach.
The Saints open play today against ADM/Van Meter at 3 p.m.
“(Being head coach) was more fun than I thought it would be,” said Dorrington, an assistant last year. “I enjoy getting the opportunity to make the final decision, but it’s a lot of pressure making the right decision.
“I usually go with my gut, and I’ve learned that works best.”
Xavier has won a record seven straight state championships. Everyone can feel the pressure.
“It’s harder because there’s a standard and an expectation that everyone expects,” Dorrington said. “You want to meet that expectation. It’s not as hard on me as it is on the girls, but the girls handle it fine.”
The Saints are 16-1 and haven’t had many close games.
“I really enjoy the close games,” Dorrington said. “They’re more fun. I get really excited for them even though the girls get nervous.”
Dorrington and the program also are ready to keep growing.
“Every year we lose a senior class,” she said. “At first I would dwell on it, but now it just happens. It’s a fun challenge to start over every year and see how your team builds.”
Dorrington said without all the support she’s received, things would have been a lot more difficult.
“There’s so much behind the scenes,” she said. “There’s my assistant coach, my parents, the team moms and the school administration.”