Daecher named Warwick track coach

By on January 30, 2014
Alex Daecher, a 1997 Warwick grad, takes over as the Warriors’third head track and field coach in the past seven years. Photo by Stan Hall

Alex Daecher, a 1997 Warwick grad, takes over as the Warriors’third head track and field coach in the past seven years. Photo by Stan Hall

If Alex Daecher could go back in time, he probably would have competed in track during his high school days at Warwick.

A former football star for both the Warriors and Kutztown University Golden Bears, Daecher didn’t realize what he was missing until he started coaching the Warwick throwers a couple of years ago.

“I think I would have liked that personal challenge,” Daecher remarked. “People are usually afraid of something new and I’m sure that would have been an issue when I was a 17-year-old, but I think that would have been the fun thing of it.”

The 35-year-old sixth-grade math teacher at Lititz Elementary is now ready for another challenge. Daecher was approved at the Warwick school board meeting on Tuesday night as the Warriors’ head track and field coach, replacing Katie Vann, who stepped down at the end of the 2013 season.

He will continue to coach the throwers, in addition to overseeing the entire program.

“The first time I did anything in track was when I started two years ago and I really took to it, I really enjoyed it,” said Daecher, who is also an assistant football coach at Warwick. “Going from football to track, it’s just very different, a little more of a laid-back setting. I just like being able to be around the kids and being able to kinda do the 1-on-1 teaching &tstr; I really like that and I thought I’d just like to take on the head coaching job.”

Daecher, who graduated from Warwick in 1997 and Kutztown University in 2002, becomes the Warriors’ third head coach in seven years, following Vann (2012-13) and Scott Rathkey (2008-11).

If things go according to plan, though, Daecher would like to be a mainstay.

“I hope to stay for quite awhile if they’ll have me and if we can hopefully get some success,” Daecher said. “I hope I can be a little more of a stability.”

In regards to his duties as an assistant football coach, Daecher is confident that he can handle the workload of both positions. In fact, he points out that others on the Warriors’ football staff are also coaching in the spring &tstr; Bob Locker and Todd Smoker in baseball, along with Eric Jeanes in girls lacrosse.

“All of us have a firm belief that kids should be doing more than one sport,” Daecher said, “and I think our actions of us coaching other sports (affirms that). Track is one of those sports that you can get a lot of kids out for it. You can have 80 to 100 kids on a team, and we’d like to not just have numbers like that, but give those kids the opportunity to do a sport where no one’s going to get cut and there’s not tryouts. I think all in all we’re really pushing kids to play more than one sport.”

Daecher and his assistants will be pushing their track and field athletes in other ways as well. The boys and girls teams both finished 0-6 in Section One last year, after coming off a 1-6 campaign in 2012. The Warriors’ newly-hired coach is hoping not only to achieve more success in terms of wins, but also to have the squads become more unified.

“I know track’s kind of (different) in the fact that it has an individual aspect to it, but it also has a team aspect to it,” Daecher said. “But I’d like to see us be more unified as a team, especially through the March and April months when we’re doing the dual meets and just in general have camaraderie as a team. And I think it’s important that we have some success. If we get the team with a couple of victories under their belt and start believing that they can have some success as a team, I think that would (go a long way). We have a fair number of kids who can help with that.”

With the start of spring pre-season workouts less than two months away (March 3), Daecher is excited about the upcoming season. He still has some work ahead of him to complete his staff, and although Daecher’s hiring might seem to be at the 11th hour, he doesn’t view it as a big concern.

“I don’t think it’s that much of a challenge in the fact that we encourage kids to go play other sports as they’re training for track,” Daecher said. “I just think with track you probably don’t start off-season until December or January, so we’re not that far behind the eight ball.”

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