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Loughlin named CCAA Women’s Soccer Coach of the Year

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 Loughlin named CCAA Women’s Soccer Coach of the Year

Nov. 4, 2014 – As hosts of the 2014 CCAA Women’s Soccer National Championship, the pressure was on for Jim Loughlin and the Medicine Hat Rattlers.

Loughlin responded, guiding his women’s soccer team to a 9-1 record in ACAC play. As a result, Loughlin has been named the CCAA’s Women’s Soccer Coach of the Year.

“Jim continues to build and improve the soccer program at Medicine Hat College year after year both on and off the field,” said Marlene Ford, the CCAA women’s soccer convenor. “He is a very worthy recipient of this award.”

This year, the Rattlers needed to replace six graduating players, including their goalkeeper and entire back four. Even though the entire defending core was new to the team or position, Medicine Hat gave up the second-fewest goals against in the ACAC.

In the process, the Rattlers won the South Division for the third year in a row. Despite only having four starters return from the 2013 team that went 8-1-1, Medicine Hat played above expectations and went on to outscore its opponents 32-8 in regular season play.

“Jim has built the women’s soccer program into a perennial top team, capable of competing against any of the top CCAA soccer teams,” said Terry Ballard, Athletics Director at Medicine Hat College.

“He is an outstanding technical coach with an unmatched knowledge of the game of soccer, but what makes Jim and his teams stand out from the rest are that he stresses complete development of his student-athletes on the pitch, in the classroom and in the community,” said Ballard.

As CCAA Coach of the Year, Loughlin receives a customized ring provided by Jostens Canada, the official ring supplier of the CCAA national championship awards banquet.

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OTHER NOMINEES

PACWEST: Julie King led the Kwantlen Eagles to a quarter-final berth in the PACWEST with a 4-5-6 record. In King’s first season at KPU, she guided her team to a five-point improvement despite only retaining 12 of 22 players from 2013. King is also the technical director for women’s soccer with the Fraser Valley Football Club.

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RSEQ: Valmie Ouellet guided John Abbott to a 3-4-3 record in her first season as head coach. This marked a six-point improvement for the Islanders, who climbed two positions this year in the RSEQ standings. Ouellet is also the technical director of the South Shore Soccer Association.

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OCAA: In Steve Vagnini’s first season at St. Clair, he was able to turn the women’s program around. The Saints finished 4-2-2 a year after posting a 1-6-1 record in the OCAA’s tough West Division. Vagnini won the Canadian Soccer League’s Coach of the Year in 2012 with the Windsor Stars.

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ACAA: Despite losing the reigning player of the year up front and a lot of veteran firepower, Gary Carter led the UKC Blue Devils to their second consecutive undefeated season (8-0-4). In 2014, UKC focused on defence, allowing only six goals against. Carter is also a well-respected coach in the Sackville Soccer Association.

The CCAA is a national sport organization enriching the academic experiences of student-athletes through intercollegiate sport.

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