Canada’s women’s soccer coaching staff announced

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OTTAWA (CIS) – Canadian Interuniversity Sport announced Friday the coaching staff that will lead Canada in women’s soccer at the 2013 Summer Universiade in Kazan, Russia.

Official website 2013 Summer Universiade: www.kazan2013.com

Liz Jepsen from the University of Alberta has been appointed head coach of the red and white squad for the 27th world university summer games, which are set for July 6 to 17. Joining her on the sidelines will be UBC’s Mark Rogers and Ryerson’s Kevin Souter, who were named assistant coach and team leader, respectively.

Jepsen is the only member of the staff with previous Universiade experience. She was an assistant coach with the 2009 team in Belgrade, Serbia.

Last August in Shenzhen, China, Canada matched its best-ever result in women’s soccer at the biennial FISU Games with a fifth-place finish. The Canadians had previously taken fifth position in 2005 in Turkey as well as in 1993, when the sport made its Universiade debut in Buffalo.

The all-CIS Canadian roster for the Kazan tournament will be announced in the spring of 2013.

“It’s a tremendous honour to be selected to lead the Canadian women’s soccer team at the 2013 FISU Games along with Mark and Kevin,” Jepsen said. “My 2009 experience as an assistant coach is indispensible for understanding the dynamics of the FISU competition, the rigors of international play, and the demands of selecting and preparing a squad at distance. The coaching staff is excited and committed to making this pinnacle event one that resonates for all participants and looks forward to the task of identifying and preparing the best across Canada to represent our country.”

“On a personal note, the 2013 competition provides an exciting opportunity to blend my Russian heritage, my Canadian upbringing in Alberta and Quebec with both my passion for the sport of soccer and conviction of CIS as the Destination of Choice for university student-athletes,” added Jepsen, whose paternal grandparents are from Minsk, now part of Belarus.

Born in Buckingham, Que., and a resident of Alberta since 1976, Jepsen had a pair of two-year stints with the U of A as a player (1989-1990, 1998-1999) and joined the Pandas’ coaching staff as an assistant in 2001. She has been part of two CIS championship teams over the years, first as a player in 1989 and then as an assistant coach in 2002. Since taking over as head coach of the Pandas in 2005, she has been named Canada West coach of the year on two occasions (2006, 2010) and was once honoured by her CIS peers (2006).

In addition to her duties with the U of A program, Jepsen is an active member of the Alberta Soccer Association and has been involved with the Alberta provincial team at the under-15 and U16 levels since 2008. Over the years, her Pandas have travelled to the United States numerous times to compete against NCAA teams, and in 2011 she took her players on a 12-day tour in Brazil, where they trained out of the Brazil National Training Centre.

For his part, Rogers was named head coach of UBC’s women’s program in 2010 following five seasons as an assistant with the Thunderbird men, a term that included CIS titles in 2005 and 2007. He played for the T-Birds from 1995 to 1997 – capturing Canada West gold and CIS silver in his final season – before embarking on an eight-year professional career in the English Football League One. In 2001, he helped Wycombe Wanderers to the FA Cup semifinals against Liverpool, and he was recently voted by FourFourTwo magazine as the greatest foreign player to ever suit up for Wycombe. Between 1999 and 2004, he also had eight caps with the Canadian national team, including a third-place finish at the 2002 CONCACAF Gold Cup.

Souter was appointed coordinator of Ryerson’s men’s and women’s soccer programs in July 2011 and has primary coaching responsibilities for both teams. He was a player-coach for the Rams in the 2010 campaign, leading the squad to its first-ever berth in the OUA Final Four. Before coming to Ryerson, he played two seasons with the Kansas City Wizards of Major League Soccer (MLS) and was an All-American with Graceland University, winning the NAIA national championship in 2006. A native of Scotland, Souter also suited up for his hometown Aberdeen Football Club and represented his country at the semi-pro level at the Four Nations Tournament in Ireland in 2005.

CANADA’S WOMEN’S SOCCER COACHING STAFF 2013 UNIVERSIADE:

Head coach: Liz Jepsen, University of Alberta

Assistant coach: Mark Rogers, University of British Columbia

Team leader: Kevin Souter, Ryerson University

CANADA’S RESULTS IN WOMEN’S SOCCER AT THE UNIVERSIADE:

2011 (Shenzhen, China): 5th / 12 teams

2009 (Belgrade, Serbia): 7th / 16

2007 (Bangkok, Thailand): 10th / 16

2005 (Izmir, Turkey): 5th / 12

2003 (Daegu, South Korea): 10th / 11

2001 (Beijing, China): 11th / 12

1993 (Buffalo, USA): 5th / 6

The Summer Universiade is an international multi-sport event that takes place every two years, and is second only to the Olympic Games in the number of participating athletes and countries. The Universiade is open to competitors between the ages of 17 and 28 in the year of the Games who are full-time students at a post-secondary institution (university, college, CEGEP) or have graduated from a post-secondary institution in the year preceding the event.

Canadian Interuniversity Sport is the national governing body of university sport in Canada. Fifty-two universities, 10,000 student-athletes and 550 coaches vie for 21 national championships in 12 different sports. CIS also provides high performance international opportunities for Canadian student-athletes at Winter and Summer Universiades, as well as numerous world university championships. For further information, visit www.cis-sic.ca.

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