Southeast's Holguin named coach of the year after leading Raiders to state soccer championship

Daniel Mayes/Daily Citizen-News

Southeast Whitfield High School boys soccer coach Hector Holguin speaks at a celebration in May for the 2021 high school boys soccer state championship teams from Coahulla Creek, Dalton and Southeast.

Southeast Whitfield High School head boys soccer coach Hector Holguin led the Raiders to the Class 4A state championship in May, and he recently received more recognition for the Raiders' season.

Holguin last week was named the 2021 Georgia Coach of the Year in the small school public category by the United Soccer Coaches Association. The award is selected by other high school coaches in Georgia.

Wesleyan's Guillermo Vallejo was named the coach of the year in the private school category, while Johns Creek's Kelly Bowen was the winner in the large school public category. Dalton defeated Johns Creek in the Class 6A title game.

Southeast finished the season 18-0-3, capping the year with a 4-0 victory over East Hall in the state championship game. It was the first state championship for Southeast since 2017 and the first under Holguin, who arrived at the school in 2018.

Southeast was one of three state championship programs in Whitfield County in 2021. Dalton and Class 3A's Coahulla Creek were the other two champions.

Southeast went all season without a loss, with two of the draws on its record coming in two matches against Dalton and the other against Coahulla Creek. The Raiders romped through the playoffs, winning each game by at least a two-goal margin on the way to the program's second state championship.

The United Soccer Coaches Association is a nationwide organization comprised of coaches at high school and collegiate levels.

The award, according to the association's website, is given because of criteria on and off the field, including community involvement, conduct on the field and team image.

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