The University of Nebraska-Kearney women’s soccer team is getting ready for their first regular season game this Thursday when they host Wayne State and the school is hoping to set an new Division II attendance record. I had the opportunity to visit with head coach Mike Munch who has a history of starting up and building college soccer programs.
In Munch’s 12 years as a women’s soccer coach he has compiled a record of 143-72-14, good for a 65.5 win percentage. He started up the program at Texas A & M-Commerce, where he went 27-20-3 in three seasons. After that, Munch moved to North Florida. He made the Osprey’s a post-season regular and eventually helped move the program from Division II up to the Division I level. So, bringing in a coach like Munch for the upstart Lopers only seemed natural.
While Munch admits he’s had some success with that formula, he’s not only hoping to build the UN-Kearney program, but he wants to stick around for awhile.
The Lopers got a late jump on recruiting, but picked up five high school seniors and two transfers to help fill out this first year roster including several in-state products. Goalie Marissa Niday (Fremont), central midfielder Maggie McClure (Omaha Marian), central defenders Sara Chapman (Lincoln Northeast) and Alicia Crawford (Kearney Catholic), wide defender/goalie Caitlin Golden (Lincoln Southwest) and wide defender Jennifer Kotulak (Omaha Mercy). Also joining the team in May were Talisha Krason (Kearney), Jessica Schnoke (Papillion-LaVista South), Ellen Thomas & Paige Toman (Millard West) and Mikayla Walsh (Grand Island).
If you live in Kearney and follow the Lopers, help this new team reach their goal. They need 2,005 fans to break the Division II women’s soccer attendance. Munch, thought those were lofty goals, but after seeing the support for his team, he thinks the fans will help break the record. Click here for more information.