Worley leaves big shoes

Published 10:06 pm Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Whatever might happen on the field, there’s sure to be one big difference when the Lakeland Lady Cavaliers’ field hockey team squares off against its opponents next year: Tara Worley will no longer be guiding her young charges from the sidelines.

Worley announced her resignation from the job of head field hockey coach last Thursday. The team’s fans and its returning players are likely to mourn the loss of their leader for some time to come — and we would not be surprised to learn of a concerted effort to try to change her mind.

Worley has guided the Lakeland team to a combined record of 250-46-3 during her 15 years as varsity head coach. Included in that run were a state championship, two regional championships, 13 regular-season Southeastern District titles, 12 district tournament titles and one conference championship. A chance at a second state championship title came to a bitter end this year in sudden-death overtime.


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Under Worley’s tutelage, Lakeland has become an unexpected field hockey powerhouse. She has won Coach of the Year honors three different times at the regional level, including this year.

One of the best measures of her success is the esteem other coaches have for her players. Some of her players have gone on to become respected contributors at the college level. And just this year, five of the Lady Cavs were named to the Group 4A all-state team. Lakeland was represented at every position, including fielding the only goalkeeper named to the team.

Worley, who has a daughter about to turn 9 and a 5-year-old son, hopes to spend more time with her children and plans to continue her efforts to promote field hockey in Suffolk and the surrounding area. She also hopes to put to use her recent master’s degree in educational administration and leadership by moving into school administration.

We wish her the very best in those endeavors.