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LJCD grad back on campus as assistant coach

Hallie Huston coaching the Torreys in time off from USD soccer team

During her four years as a high school student on the campus of La Jolla Country Day, Hallie Huston became as much a part of the girls’ soccer program as the colors blue and white. Now, after two years away, the former Torreys star is back on the field at Country Day - only this time, she’s on the sidelines.

Huston, a 2006 graduate of Country Day who was named to the All CIF San Diego Section team after each of her four seasons there, is back on campus this fall as an assistant to head coach Dave Jenkins. It’s a new role that she is squeezing in between classes and soccer practices at nearby USD.

“I’ve always sort of been interested in coaching, and I thought being able to coach with Mr. Jenkins would be fun,” Huston said. “I just really love soccer, and I wanted to share my passion for soccer with high school kids.”

Huston is a junior midfielder for USD, and has been a consistent contributor for the Toreros since landing on the north La Jolla campus. As a freshman in the fall of 2006, she started all 20 of the team’s games, scored three goals and notched three assists. As a sophomore, she contributed three assists, and this fall, Huston scored one goal and added two assists.

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Her busiest time of the year is during soccer season, and when the Toreros’ 2008 campaign ended Nov. 17 with a loss to UCLA in the second round of the NCAA tournament, Huston’s schedule was freed up a bit. Jenkins, whose previous assistant had left the position suddenly, had already asked Huston to work with him, and she gladly accepted.

One of Huston’s most valuable assets, both she and Jenkins agreed, is her ability to relate to Country Day’s players. After all, it wasn’t that long ago that she was wearing the same uniform. A handful of the current Torreys seniors were teammates of Huston’s when Country Day won the CIF SDS Division IV championship during her senior season.

“The girls really like her, and she’s really positive,” Jenkins said. “USD is really a quality program, and Hallie brings an intercollegiate feel to the practices.

“She has a totally different connection with the girls than I do.”

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Because of her new commitment, Huston’s daily schedule is extremely busy. She works out with the USD soccer team in the morning, attends classes until mid-afternoon, and goes straight to practice or games at Country Day.

“At the end of the day, I’m exhausted,” Huston said, “but it’s definitely worth it.”