Girls soccer announces Lastova head coach for 2019 season


courtesy of Mark Lastova

Mark Lastova coaches the Linganore girls soccer team in the late 1990s.

by Bailey Bennett, Reporter

Four days before the first varsity girls soccer game of the 2018 season, head coach, Howard Putterman resigned. Putterman stepped down to take a position as an athletic director at Tuscarora High School.

This announcement came as a shock. Putterman had been coaching LHS girls soccer for 10 years and had just led the team to their first state championship in school history.

After his resignation, assistant coach Phil Werner coached for the remainder of the season, with help from the junior varsity coaches.

The girls team went 13-7-1 for the 2018 season with exceptional performance from senior midfielder Fiona Rowan, earning her first team in the CMC spires division. The girls team also had a phenomenal back line with defenders Abby Rieland, Alison Gagne and Karlee Duda all earning second team in the CMC Spires Division.

In preparation for the 2019 season, Mark Lastova, who’s involved with Project Lead The Way and an experienced soccer coach was announced as the new head coach on February 8.                         

Lastova brings experience that is deeper than most coaches. Lastova’s entire teaching career, 30 years, is at LHS. Lastova has coached both of his children for many years and coached in both the girls and boys programs at Linganore. He coached at the Soccer Association of Columbia for 20 years and at Thunder Soccer Club for 5 years. Lastova also hand-selected 4 teams and took them to 3 international tournaments in Aberystwyth, Wales, Portsmouth, England and Limerick, Ireland.

In 2012 Lastova decided to stop coaching to enjoy watching his own children play. After being in the stands for seven years, Lastova said, “ I decided to coach again because I missed being on the sideline. Watching from the stands really inspired me to coach again. It’s going to be good to get back out there on the pitch. I am looking forward to working with such a talented group of girls.”

The returning varsity players are looking forward to Lastova being the new head coach.

Midfielder, Sammie Hoefs said, “I’ve only heard good things about Mr. Lastova. I am very excited, and I can tell he’s going to bring a lot to the program. He has a lot of passion for the game. He’s going to devote time and effort into the success of the team.”

Forward, Josie Beezel said, “I am excited that Mr. Lastova is a teacher at Linganore because he is easy to reach when we need him.”

After watching various games this past season, Lastova said he will focus on getting the girls strong and conditioned before tryouts and getting to know individual players in order to plan for the season.

Lastova is looking for well- rounded players with aggression, technical ability, commitment and good work ethic. As a coach it is important to him to clearly communicate with his players and push them to their full potential.

If you are interested in playing soccer next year, reach out to Mr. Lastova in room C106 to get information about after school lifting.