Jason Bird’s time had come.
After eight seasons as the head Princeton boys soccer coach and 15 total years in the program, Bird resigned Monday after guiding PHS to its most successful season.
“When this group of seniors came in as freshmen, I had made up my mind that I would follow them through and then be done,” Bird said. “It’s been 29-30 years of coaching, so it’s just time to move on.”
In his eight seasons, Bird led Princeton to three regional titles. His squad finished 18-4-5 this fall and fell Saturday in a sectional final, which is the deepest a PHS boys soccer squad has advanced.
“I’m very pleased with the way this year went,” Bird said. “Obviously, we would’ve liked to have gone further and we thought we could’ve, but when you end it coaching a group that played as hard as these guys did … sometimes we may not have had as much skill as the other teams we played, but when it came to working hard, playing with heart and a lot of guts this group did it, so it was great.”
Bird, who was a PHS assistant for seven years before becoming head coach, informed his squad in late September at a team dinner that he planned to resign following the season.
“It wasn’t necessarily a difficult choice for me because it was time,” Bird said. “A couple of kids in the junior class have played with me since their freshman year and you’d like to see them go through, but if that’s the case you’re going to be around forever. It wasn’t a difficult choice, but it was an emotional decision.”
Jared Bell can be reached at 220-6938, or at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @NT_SportsJared.