Baltimore, Md.-- UMBC men's soccer honored assistant coach Sam DeBone, who retired from coaching the Retrievers after 23 years on the sidelines at UMBC. Coach DeBone left his mark on the program, mentoring numerous goalies who earned all-conference honors and some that went on to play professionally and coach in the college ranks.
"It was a special night for a man loved in our program. We appreciate everything he has done both on and off the field," UMBC head coach Pete Caringi Jr. said of the ceremony.
During his 23 year tenure at UMBC, DeBone has mentored some of the greatest goalkeepers in program history, including Billy Heavner, Brian Rowland and Phil Saunders. Heavener helped lead the Retrievers to the NCAA College Cup in 2014, surrendering just two goals on the run. Rowland is the program leader in career shutouts with 25 and has made coaching stops at national powerhouse Maryland and is currently the head coach at Temple.
Other notable names that were in attendance and mentored by DeBone were Dan Louisignau, Soren Byskov, CJ Norton, Steve King, Andy Marchica, and Tom Wunk.
"Sam deserved this celebration tonight. He has positively impacted so many lives over the years. Sam is definitely one of the good guys in our game and his contributions to UMBC Soccer can not be measured," associate head coach Anthony Adams said of DeBone.
Several alumni were in attendance to honor coach DeBone, and coach DeBone was touched by everyone that came back to pay tribute to a man that has helped shaped the lives of so many.
"I want to say thank you to Pete (Caringi) for taking a chance on me. This event tonight gave me the chance to publicly say thank you to everyone. This program will always have a special place in my heart," DeBone said during the event.
Coach DeBone previously coached at Walt Whitman High School, coaching both the boys' and girls' teams for 26 years. He led the Vikings to six boys' state finals, winning four. He also guided the girls to seven county finals and one title. In his tenure at WWHS, DeBone led three teams to national rankings, produced 10 All- Americans and earned four county and state Coach of the Year honors. His all-time record in 26 seasons was 398-166-43, a winning percentage of 69.1.
In 1994, Coach DeBone was the Region Three Boys' Coach of the Year, the highest honor awarded in the state. He also has 15 years of club coaching experience, including seven state titles. He has a USSF "C" License and an NSCAA Advanced National Diploma, and he was the state director for the NSCAA of Maryland.
DeBone was inducted into the Walt Whitman Athletics' Hall of Fame in 2009.