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For the first time since 1972, the Tabb cross-country team will be coached by someone other than George Coulter.
Taking over for Coulter, who amassed more than 300 wins while at Tabb, will be Erin Curry and Robin Moon.
Curry and Moon have been co-coaching the Tabb girls cross-country team for the past two years, but will have total control of the program for the first time this year.
Following in the footsteps of a Tabb legend is a task neither takes lightly.
“Filling George Coulter’s shoes is huge,” Moon said. “That guy has been an institution and he has a tremendous track record.”
From a coaching standpoint, Curry and Moon bring different strengths that stem from their starkly different backgrounds.
Curry, the younger of the two, ran track and cross-country in high school before graduating from Virginia Tech’s graduate school in 2012. Curry did not run competitively in college, but said the beauty of Blacksburg made her rediscover her love for running.
Straight out of graduate school, Curry took a job teaching history and geography at Tabb. While interviewing for the teaching position, Curry mentioned she was training for a half-marathon, which prompted an inquiry into whether she would be interested in coaching the girls cross-country team.
While Curry has a more casual running background, Moon has been a competitive athlete most of her life.
Moon was a longtime swimmer who competed for Cornell University before joining the U.S. Navy. While serving in the Navy, Moon began running seriously and started competing in races.
When she retired from the Navy after 30 years of service, Moon decided she wanted to give back to the running community. A mother of two boys who ran at Tabb, Trent and Brian, Moon approached Curry in 2012 to ask if she could help coach the girls cross-country team.
The partnership between the two formed in 2012 will take a big step forward as the two team up to lead the Tabb cross-country program that sent both the boys and girls teams to the state meet in 2014.
Curry outlined the differences between the two, saying she is better dealing with kids, while Moon is better handling parents and adults.
“I’m very much a teacher and enjoy talking with the kids more,” Curry joked.
Despite Curry technically holding the title of girls head coach and Moon the boys head coach, the two have split coaching responsibilities differently. Moon coaches the upper-level varsity runners while Curry coaches the mid-level varsity and junior-varsity runners.
Heading into their third year coaching together, the two coaches have developed a good rapport with one another and their runners. Despite having to replace a Tabb coaching legend, both Curry and Moon believe they can continue sending Tabb runners to the state meet.
“I have absolutely no doubt our runners are going to be successful,” Moon said.