Dave Dolch, head coach of the St. Paul's School (Brooklandville, Md.) varsity football team, has been named Ravens High School Coach of the Week for the 10th and final week of the 2008 season. Presented by Toyota, this is the 12th year of the Ravens' award program.
Dolch earns the honor after his Crusaders (7-3) defeated rival Boys' Latin, 19-17, on Friday (11/7). St. Paul's will face defending MIAA B Conference Champion St. Mary's this Saturday in the championship game.
Though the Crusaders took an early lead, the Lakers fought hard to get back into the game by forcing three-and-outs and converting crucial fourth downs to overtake St. Paul's, 17-16, with under five minutes left in the contest. The Crusaders came back strong to get in field position on the game's last drive, despite fighting forces beyond their control.
Boys' Latin was not the only challenge St. Paul's had to overcome on the field. In the fourth quarter, QB Troy Jones suffered an allergic reaction to a bee sting, but battled through a swollen arm to lead his team on a final drive, setting up the 37-yard winning field goal by K Brian Pater with 39 seconds remaining.
"Troy was stung at the beginning of the fourth quarter and we were down at the point 17-16," Dolch said. "Our medical people are outstanding - he just came back and said he was good to go. It was an allergic reaction. He was swollen and gutted it out. It was a great final drive to win the game."
This is Dolch's first honor as Ravens High School Coach of the Week, but he will hang up his headset at the end of the season. Beginning in July 2009, he will serve as the athletic director at the newly built Manchester Valley High School in Carroll County. The move takes Dolch into familiar territory. The 32-year coaching veteran is a graduate of Western Maryland College (now McDaniel), and his wife Kim is principal at North Carroll High School.
Dolch told his team early in the season that this would be his last year at St. Paul's, and they responded.
"Our team has known about it for the last seven weeks, and they reeled off seven conference wins," Dolch said. "I am really proud of these players. I have 12 seniors that have played really hard. The kids refused to lose and made the big plays to win the ball games."
Each week during the season, the Ravens honor a high school coach who has made a significant impact on his athletes. Each of the season's weekly winners will be present at the Ravens–Steelers home game on Dec. 14, for the naming of the Ravens' High School Coach of the Year.
A panel of area high school experts selects the coach of the week. The recipients receive:
- A $2,000 donation to the school's football program
- An award certificate signed by Ravens head coach John Harbaugh, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, and Gene Washington, the NFL's Director of Football Development
- A specially-designed hat
2008 Ravens HS Coach of the Week Recipients
Week 1 Chuck Markiewicz Arundel
Week 2 Lance Clelland Meade
Week 3 Tony Shermeyer Century
Week 4 Keith Robinson Perry Hall
Week 5 Reggie White Milford Mill
Week 6 Anthony Burgos Franklin
Week 7 Johnny Brooks Havre de Grace
Week 8 Eric Woodson Northwestern
Week 9 Don Graef Queen Anne's County
Week 10 Dave Dolch St. Paul's School