Friday, September 14, 2012

Spidahl takes the reins

Coach enjoying his first few weeks with women’s soccer program

By Brandon Adam, Guest Writer
A new year, a new field, new players, and a new coach. On Friday, Seth Spidahl officially became the fifth coach in the history of the women’s soccer program.

Spidahl said he has enjoyed the short amount of time he has already worked with the players.

"It’s been a good first two and a half weeks," Spidahl said. "Couldn’t be happier."

Spidahl is optimistic coaching the women’s soccer team and said he had high hopes for the 2012 season.

"Our goal is to finish in the top half of the conference," Spidahl said. "I think it’s feasible for us to be in the top half of the conference."

Spidahl is a former PLU soccer player himself. He graduated in 1994 and was a four-year letter winner while playing soccer as a Lute.

"I obviously have a lot of pride in the school," Spidahl said.

Finishing in the top half of the conference will be challenging for the players and coach.

"We took eighth place out of nine teams last year so we have a lot of work to do," Spidahl said. "I don’t know what the opposition level is like so it’s going to be a learning curve for me as well."

Spidahl has extensive coaching experience in youth and college level soccer. He was assistant coach for the University of Washington from 2001 to 2009 and was recently head coach of the Seattle Wolves.

Spidahl said coaching collegiate soccer is different than coaching youth soccer. "I enjoyed college soccer," Spidahl said. "You really get to see a lot of improvement in a short amount of time."

Though Spidahl has only coached the PLU team for a short time, he has developed a good relationship with his players. "I can feel they’re excited about the change," Spidahl said. "They’re understanding what my expectations are."

Aside from coaching at PLU he is the technical director of Washington Premier Football Club and local director of the girl’s soccer league, Elite Clubs National League.

Spidahl directs 39 Washington youth teams and coaches two Elite Clubs National League teams.

Spidahl’s tenure at Pacific Lutheran started with a 4-2 victory over Trinity Lutheran on Friday.