United Soccer Coaches news release
St. Thomas Women's Soccer has received Division III North Region Coaching Staff of the Year for 2018 by the United Soccer Coaches. It's the second such award the Tommie program has received in the last three seasons.
This honor -- to head coach Sheila McGill, plus assistants Julie Eibensteiner and Julie Lundquist -- was determined via a vote by other North Region coaches who are also members of the United Soccer Coaches College Services program.
The Tommie staff will now be placed onto the National Staff of the Year ballot. The voting for D-III's National SOY will begin in early December, with the national winner announced Dec. 14.
The presentation of Division III's eight regional SOY plaques will take place in January at the College Coaches Reception during the national convention in Chicago.
"Sheila demonstrates on a daily basis to both staff and players alike that you can be kind, treat people well, and still be fiercely competitive and successful on the field," Eibensteiner said. "When people genuinely enjoy being part of an experience, success is more likely to follow."
McGill has the most wins among the four head coaches in program history -- including two unbeaten MIAC seasons -- and is on pace to surpass 150 victories next season. She's guided the Tommies to three consecutive NCAA playoff berths, as well as individual awards ranging from All-America and Academic All-America to multiple MIAC Offensive and Defensive Player of the Year honors.
Her last five teams have improved from eight victories in 2014, to 12 wins in 2015, to 17 wins in 2016, to 13 wins in 2017, and 19 wins in 2018. The current senior class posted the best four-year record in program history at 61-15-6.
McGill has carried on a strong academic tradition, too, with a team grade-point average in the 3.40 range. In 2017 alone, UST had nine upperclass athletes make Academic All-MIAC with cumulative gpas of 3.50 or better. Her 2018 team had two standouts make CoSIDA Academic All-District with gpas of 3.92 or better.
McGill was named MIAC Coach of the Year after her team swept the conference regular-season and playoff titles. Her 2018 team finished 19-2-1 and also had school records for wins (19) and longest win streak (14).
This was McGill's second MIAC Coach of the Year award in her 12 seasons. Her 142-67-23 overall record (85-32-15 in MIAC regular-season) includes 10 consecutive winning seasons in conference play and five consecutive trips to the conference playoffs.
The 2018 Tommies also:
- scored UST's most season goals in more than 20 seasons.
- went unbeaten in the postseason (3-0-1);
- posted the best record for any MIAC women's soccer team in the last 12 seasons;
- finished 10-0 in play on its home field;
- outscored opponents 10-0 in the last nine minutes of regulation and throughout overtimes;
- outscored opponents 58-11 overall, with 13 shutouts
- have three players on the All-America ballot and two on the CoSIDA Academic All-America ballot.
Over the last four seasons, the Tommies have recorded a conference-best 48 shutouts, and also posted a 28-10 record in one-goal decisions.
Ten times in that span, they fell behind in games but came back to win or tie. In games they scored first, they went 55-0. In games when they scored two or more goals, St. Thomas went 41-0-2.