The end to the Carroll soccer season won’t be the same after the passing of Head Coach Rollie Clements, which was announced by the school Tuesday.
“Today the Chargers celebrate the life and impact of Carroll High School Boys Soccer Coach Rollie Clements,” Carroll Athletic Director Dan Ginder said. “Coach Clements was in his 33rd year as the Chargers’ head soccer coach. He was among the first Carroll graduates, taught until last year at Carroll High School and he served endlessly. Thank you, Coach Clements, our good and faithful Charger.”
Clements, 67, announced his retirement from teaching in May. He continued coaching soccer and helping with the Youth Services Center of Allen County until he was recently hospitalized. He taught at Northwest Allen County Schools for 28 of his 34 years of dedication to the profession.
Clements taught earth/space science, government, U.S. history and integrated chemistry/physics during his time at Carroll.
“We are deeply saddened by the loss of such a good ally for students,” NACS Superintendent Chris Himsel said. “Rollie helped his students achieve both on and off the field. He will be missed, and we extend our sympathies to his family, his school family and his extensive soccer family.”
In a news release from NACS, Clements was remembered by Sally Gerber, a guidance counselor at Carroll, as being always ready with a smile and a comment to make you laugh.
“He would tell wonderful stories about his students and would always make me laugh,” she said. “He always had a positive outlook and attitude. He truly cared about students.”
Clements has previously said his greatest accomplishment was seeing 79 of his players go on to play soccer in college.
Clements began his Carroll coaching career in 1989, before soccer was an IHSAA-sanctioned sport. He held a career record of 428-141-56, and was coach for 13 sectional titles, eight regional titles and two semi-state titles. He took his teams to the Final Four in the state tournament three times — in 1994, 2003 and 2018.
“Rollie’s impact on Carroll is far-reaching and well beyond just soccer,” Ginder said in an email. “Rollie was one of the first graduates of Carroll High School, and he came back and served so many. His impact on Indiana high school soccer is immense. I believe Heaven welcomed Rollie with ‘Welcome, my good and faithful servant.’”
Clements is also credited with starting the girls soccer program at Bishop Luers. He was an assistant coach for the girls basketball team at Carroll, and previously held coaching positions at the University of Saint Francis and Canterbury School.
Asked in May about his decision to retire from teaching, Clements said he would miss the kids most of all.
“If you’re going to teach, I can’t imagine a better place to be than here. There’s just so many good people to work with and great kids,” he said. “The fun part is just seeing all the kids that have come through here — the doctors and dentists and lawyers. Heck, I’m teaching with a bunch of my former students now too. It’s just fun watching them grow up and do well.”