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Julianne Sitch becomes first woman to coach men’s soccer team to NCAA title

julianne sitch.jpg
Posted at 3:03 PM, Dec 15, 2022
and last updated 2022-12-15 16:10:11-05

The University of Chicago men's soccer team recently made history on and off the field after being crowned NCAA Division III national champions.

On Dec. 3, they defeated Williams College 2-0, which marked their first-ever NCAA national title in program history.

That wasn't the only monumentous event to take place that day.

Their head coach Julianne Sitch became the first woman to coach a men’s soccer team to an NCAA title.

"The credit goes to the team. I mean, these guys have never had a female coach before, and they embraced me as one of their own. And for me, that will forever be a grateful moment," Sitch said after the game. "And just to watch them play, I’m extremely proud."

The win also capped off an undefeated season, with the team finishing with a 22-0-1 record.

"To the players and staff before us, thank you for paving the way to make this happen," Sitch said on her personal Twitter account a day after the historic win. "To my staff, your relentless work, trust and belief helped lift this team to a championship - be proud! To our team, WOW! You have and will continue to inspire those around you in all that you do."

The first goal occurred in the 66th minute when Robbie Pino launched the ball from 28 yards into the upper left corner of the goal. Ryan Yetishefsky sealed the win with less than 20 seconds of the game by placing the ball into an empty net, the school said in a statement.

Sitch, who previously coached with the university's women's team and the National Women's Soccer League (NWSL), is in her first season at the team's helm.