Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Erica Walsh To Coach Women's Soccer Team

Erica Walsh has been named as Harvard's new women's soccer head coach in an announcement made by Nichols Family Director of Athletics Bob Scalise.

The current U.S. Under-17 national team head coach comes to Harvard after spending one season as an assistant with the nationally ranked Florida State program. A former head coach, Walsh has eight years of experience coaching at the collegiate level. She has also been associated with the U.S. national team for three years, having worked with the U-19 and U-17 teams. She is also a USSF 'A' License Coach.

"We are thrilled to have Erica Walsh join our department to lead our women's soccer program," said Scalise. "Being able to attract such a quality person speaks volumes about our tradition of excellence and where we can go in the future. Erica has already earned a great deal of success in the coaching ranks, and we look forward to helping her build on our past success to accomplish great things at Harvard."

Walsh's experience within the Ivy League has been highly successful as a former assistant and head coach at Dartmouth. After two seasons as an assistant in Hanover, N.H., Walsh took over the top duties in 2000 and led the Big Green to two Ivy titles and three NCAA tournament appearances including a pair of appearances in the round of 16. Overall, Walsh produced a three-year record of 37-15-2 (.704) with a 16-4-1 league mark.

"My personal connection to the Ivy League and the emphasis it places on quality academics and athletics makes this opportunity very appealing to me," said Walsh. "Harvard's wonderful tradition has been bolstered by a tremendous recruiting class, and I am extremely eager to get started." Her Dartmouth teams finished 13th, 16th and 25th in the National Soccer Coaches Association of America final rankings in her three seasons. Additionally, all three of her teams received the NSCAA's Team Academic Award while she was the head coach.

Walsh stepped down from Dartmouth following the 2002 season to pursue an MBA from Lehigh University while working as an assistant coach with the Mountain Hawks. After two years at Lehigh, Walsh joined the Florida State program, which advanced to last season's NCAA College Cup semifinals.

Walsh earned her undergraduate degree in biology in 1997 from The College of William & Mary, where she also stood out on the soccer field, advancing to post season play in all four years. Named as a captain in her senior season, Walsh was also a two-time first team All-CAA selection, a two-time team MVP, and an NSCAA all-region selection.


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