SK soccer coach Bergeson resigns

Eric Bergeson is stepping down after 11 seasons coaching soccer for the Wolves. - Jesse Beals/Staff Photo
Eric Bergeson is stepping down after 11 seasons coaching soccer for the Wolves.
— image credit: Jesse Beals/Staff Photo

Eric Bergeson guided both the boys and girls soccer programs at South Kitsap High School as recently as three years ago.

He resigned as girls coach immediately after the Wolves’ 2-1 loss Nov. 8, 2005 in the first round of the Class 4A state playoffs against Jackson of Mill Creek.

Thirty-one months later, Bergeson has relinquished his position as the school’s boys coach after 11 seasons.

Bergeson, who guided South to five of school’s seven state-playoff appearances, was on a family vacation in Chelan and unavailable for comment when the announcement was made.

He led the Wolves to the state championship match two years ago, where they lost 5-1 against Snohomish.

His overall record at SK was 110-56-22.

Athletic director Ed Santos said Bergeson, who will continue to teach social studies at South, told him he wanted to spend more time with his family. Bergeson also conveyed those thoughts to some of the players he met with on Monday, the final day of school.

Junior forward and captain Justin Moore said they were under the impression that Bergeson would return for one more season.

“People were talking about it, but I didn’t think it was going to happen,” he said. “I was shocked. I thought he was going to wait until next year.”

Junior forward Brent Ricigliano said Bergeson told him that he will remain close to the program.

While Bergeson isn’t expected to have an official role in the program, Ricigliano said, “He’s going to hang around and be there.”

Santos said there’s time to fill the position because boys soccer is a spring sport but, “We’re going to get rolling in the next couple of weeks.”

The Wolves finished 12-3-2 overall this season and were second in the Narrows League at 8-1-1.

“He will be difficult to replace,” Santos said. “He did a great job on the field and with his kids. His kids performed everywhere. They performed in the classroom and always conducted themselves well on the field.”

Scott Sodorff, who filled Bergeson’s position as the girls coach, said he won’t apply for the position.

His wife, Jamie, gave birth to their first child, Isabella, on May 26.

“I don’t think taking on another sport would be in my best interest,” Sodorff said.

Moore and Ricigliano will return, as will several other juniors, including defenders Jesse Askew and Kaleb Craig, goalkeeper Daniel Lathrop and midfielder Jason Skolnik, in addition to sophomore midfielder Nico de la Cruz and defender Gavin Klein.

However, the Wolves also graduated 11 seniors.

“It’s going to be hard coming in with a new guy for a year,” Moore said. “All around it’s going to be different and it’s going to affect the program.”

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