High school girls soccer

Kick it up notch: Messer nets national coach-of-year recognition

Messer has led Camden Hills to four straight state Class A pitch titles
By Mark Haskell | Jan 16, 2020
Courtesy of: Charlotte Messer Camden Hills girls soccer coach Meredith Messer.

Rockport — If the dozens of other high school girls soccer teams in the Pine Tree State were stars, then the North Star, for the past four years, surely has been at Camden Hills Regional High School.

And, the one constant in that orbit, for the past 24 years, has been coach Meredith Messer.

And, after being awarded the 2018-19 National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) girls soccer coach of the year for Maine in November, Messer received word on Monday, Jan. 13 she had received the organization’s highest honor — namely, the NFHS National Girls Soccer Coach of the Year.

“I can’t think of anyone more deserving than her,” said Camden Hills athletic director Jeff Hart. “I know everyone looks at the wins and the championships, but for everyone here, we get to see her every day and how she works with kids and is able to get the most out of all her players. And to top it all off, I cannot imagine a better role model in our community.”

The Windjammers just sailed to their fourth straight state Class A championship and now sport a 69-game win streak which stretches back to Sept. 20, 2016. The Windjammers also are ranked nationally (24th) in the USA Today Sports Super 25 Expert Rankings.

In 24 years, Messer has led the Windjammers — Camden Hills and previous Camden-Rockport — to 263 victories. She was selected amongst 41 other candidates to earn the nationwide distinction.

She called receiving the national award “astounding.”

“What makes it the most meaningful is that the Maine Principals’ Association selected me as Maine’s choice for our state,” she said. “That selection was based on how my players handled themselves, played unselfishly and respected their opponents. They were able to model what our program message has always been and that makes me feel very proud. Their quality of play and character and long-term success was key to my receiving this award. I feel very lucky and overwhelmed.”

Messer also is in Baltimore, Md. this week to receive an award from the USCA as their Region 1 coach of the year.

Messer, a mathematics teacher at Camden Hills, was called to the school's main office on Monday morning and received the news on her national award from Hart and Principal Shawn Carlson.

“They handed me a piece of paper and told me to read it,” she said. “It was addressed to Shawn informing him that I had won. When it sunk in what I’d read I looked up and said, ‘Holy smokes, seriously!?’ And I felt like my cheeks were really red. Didn’t seem possible. Then Jeff joked that he was out of money for banners and I would have to buy my own.”

It is the second time in as many months a member of the Windjammer girls soccer team received national acclaim as senior Kristina Kelly was named the 2019 High School Girls National Player of the Year in December by the United Soccer Coaches Association.

"I'm so happy for her," said Kelly. "Her dedication to the program at Camden [Hills] and to all the players she has coached has always been very evident. She knows how to balance working hard and having fun, which I think is the key to a great team and she couldn't do it any better. I wouldn't be where I am today without her, and I hope one day I can make as much of an impact on a soccer community as she has."

Comments (1)
Posted by: Rick Ash | Jan 17, 2020 14:21

Congratulations Meredith!

If you wish to comment, please login.