Knudsen named coach of the year
Dartmouth women's soccer head coach Kelly Blasius Knudsen '91 was named Northeast Region coach of the year for the Northeast Region by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America on Monday.
In her second season as head coach of the Big Green, Knudsen has spearheaded an amazing turnaround. After capturing the Ivy League title for the first time since 1983, the Big Green have advanced to the quarterfinals of the NCAA Tournament. The team will play the University of North Carolina on Friday.
All this after going 9-8-2 a year ago.
"Kelly's really brought back the feeling of the team as a family. She's brought back the caring side," co-Captain Chrissy Castro '00 said. "She's recuited players that have such a huge heart. We have so much heart this year, and I think Kelly helps bring that out."
An All-Ivy player in her days while wearing the green and white, Knudsen returned to the Big Green as an assistant coach from 1992-1994. Her first shot as head coach came in 1995 at the University of Vermont. In her second season, she led the Catamounts to a 12-4-1 record and the America East title.
Knudsen was tabbed as the next head coach of the Big Green for the following season.
"We were really excited to get her," Castro said. "We knew she'd do a great job."
The Big Green have reached the quarters by defeating Wisconsin and Georgia. The win over Wisconsin two weeks ago was Dartmouth's first ever in the NCAA tournament. Unfortunately for the Big Green, they won't be able to take Chase Field and the packed crowds that have followed them all season down to North Carolina with them.
Dartmouth finished the season 16-1-2 and was undefeated in 10 home matches this season and allowed just one goal at home games.
"I'm just so thrilled and impressed with the way this team has come together. This whole experience has just been a dream for everyone on the team," Castro said.