Thursday, February 16, 2012

New women’s soccer head coach hired

Pacific Lutheran Alum Seth Spidahl has winning record, seeks to immediately improve team

By Justin Buchanan, Sports Editor

Pacific Lutheran women’s soccer found a new coach to lead them into the 2012 season.

Alumnus Seth Spidahl was recently named the women’s head soccer coach and the director of soccer.

Spidahl comes to PLU one year after he won a championship with an Elite Clubs National League.

Spidahl hopes his connections to PLU and the Pacific Northwest help kickstart the women’s soccer program after going 4-13-1 last season.

“With our current talent that we have here, we can finish higher in the standings than we did last year,” Spidahl said. “The message to the team is improvement.”

Recruitment is one of Spidahl’s other strengths, which was highly sought when the job became open.

Spidhal’s reputation in the soccer community in the Pacific Northwest allowed him to stand out in the candidate pool.

“We feel that what Seth will bring to the program immediately is he has tremendous reputation within the soccer community of the Pacific Northwest,” Sports Information Director Nick Dawson said. “As that relates to recruiting and other aspects that should be very helpful for our program, that’s going to be a huge benefit to our program.”

Spidhal served as recruiting director and first men’s assistant coach at the University of Washington, a Division I university, from 2001 to 2009.

During that time, Spidhal’s overall coaching record was 83- 58-16. The team made the postseason five times.

“I was the head recruiter at UW, so I recruited lots of current pros that are in the MLS,” Spidahl said. “I’m confident I can take those recruiting skills I learned up there and apply them down here.”

Spidahl, being a PLU alumus, also brings an understanding of the university’s athletic culture.

“I have a lot of passion for the school,” Spidahl said. “I think I can sell the school, and it’s mission and our programs.”

Spidhal replaces Lynnette Buffington, who resigned after five seasons with a 24-63-8 record.

A winning history

  • One championship with Elite Clubs National League
  • 83-58-16 record at UW