A group of 11 seniors on the King George High School soccer team were determined to leave their mark in the county this past spring.

The Foxes knew they had all the ingredients to break records at the school in a sport without any banners hanging in the gymnasium.

Senior striker Chas Parker was perhaps the greatest reason for the Foxes’ confidence.

Parker possesses speed, quickness and power in each of his legs perhaps unseen in King George soccer history.

Parker and his teammates made good on their potential.

King George won a school-record 15 games and captured its first-ever regular season district or conference crown.

The Foxes also advanced to the conference tournament championship and the 4A–East Region playoffs.

Parker tallied a school record 36 goals and added 11 assists. His performance earned him Free Lance–Star player of the year recognition. Parker was also named the Conference 19 player of the year and first-team all-state.

“It means everything,” Parker said of the legacy he and the Foxes’ seniors left behind. “We all knew what we could do. We knew there was a lot of history to make if we wanted it. But at the same time there was a lot of pressure on us that we had never faced before.”

That pressure was felt in the conference tournament title game. The Foxes entered the postseason with a 14–1–1 record and a No. 1 seed in the conference.

They faced perennial state power Chancellor in the title game. King George appeared uptight the entire contest and eventually lost to the Chargers 2–1 in overtime.

“The conference championship game is one I’m always thinking about,” Parker said. “I think that was a prime example of us letting the pressure get to us. We knew that would be the first-ever [district or conference tournament title] for the school and that was the first goal we had set. Once it became realistic it was a lot harder to go out and do it.”

Parker may dwell on the defeat but he does have a promising future ahead. He committed to play for the University of Mary Washington as a junior.

King George head coach Jeff Butler said Parker has the tools to be successful at the next level. Parker’s skillset often left the coach in awe. Parker scored a combined 62 goals his final two seasons. He set a school record with 71 goals for his career.

“The biggest thing is his elite speed with or without the ball at his feet,” Butler said. “He’s generally the fastest player on the field every time we step out there. He uses that to his advantage and he has one of the heaviest strikes you’ll find. Right-footed or left-footed, if he gets space inside the box, he can just rifle shots that are unstoppable.”

Parker’s foot strength was seen as an asset as a field goal kicker for the Foxes’ football team. He was one of the top kickers in the Fredericksburg area.

Parker attended a kicking camp in South Carolina as a junior and was named one of the top performers. That earned him an invitation to the prestigious Kohl’s Football Kicking and Punting Camp in Milwaukee, Wisc.

Parker turned down the invitation because there was a soccer showcase event at the same time. He said that’s when he knew he preferred a college career in soccer rather than football.

Parker hopes to leave a similar legacy at UMW as he did at King George. The sport is now much more popular in the county than it was before he and the other 10 recent graduates arrived.

“Soccer is becoming more and more important in the area,” Butler said. “We seem to have more and more players doing the travel stuff and playing year-round that Courtland and Chancellor have been doing for years. We’ve always been there nipping at their heels but this year was a good step forward. Hopefully we can keep it going.”

Get our Saturday Sports Newsletter

* I understand and agree that registration on or use of this site constitutes agreement to its user agreement and privacy policy.

Taft Coghill Jr: 540/374-5526

tcoghill@freelancestar.com

Recommended for you

Load comments