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Sagastume retires at Air Force; Towson extends Olszewski.

Lou Sagastume
Lou Sagastume (forefront), who retired as Air Force coach, celebrated his 300th coaching victory with his players last season to an ovation from Falcons fans.
-- Air Force Academy photos --
By Gary Davidson
SoccerTimes

U.S. AIR FORCE ACADEMY, Colo. (Wednesday, April 11, 2007) -- Lou Sagastume, considered the "father" of soccer at the Air Force Academy, stepped down suddenly yesterday after 28 years leading the Falcons program.

Air Force will conduct a national search to find a replacement, but a timeline was not established.

"It has been an honor for me to coach at the Air Force Academy," said Sagastume, whose final club finished 5-12-1, 1-9 in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation. "As much as I have enjoyed the 28 years at this wonderful institution, it is time for me to move on and let someone else continue the progress of the men's soccer program."

Sagastume, 62, stepped down on the same day Towson extended the contract of another veteran coach. Frank Olszewski, who has led the Tigers for 25 years, had his contract, set to expire after the coming season, extended for three more years until 2010.

In 2006, Sagastume became the 25th coach in NCAA Division I men's history to compile 300 victories, but his responsibilities extended beyond producing an impressive win-loss record. "A number of his players went on to be great officers in the Air Force," said Jerry Cross, who handles sports information responsibilities for the men's soccer team. "That's as big a part of the mission here than anything."

In 28 years, Sagastume compiled a 282-188-43 (.592) record at Air Force. Including coaching San Francisco State to a 21-7 (.750) mark in his first two seasons as a head coach, his overall mark was 303-195-43 (.618) over 30 years. During the 2006 season, he became the 25th coach in Division I history to reach the 300-win plateau.

Lou Sagastume
Lou Sagastume was the 25th Division I coach to reach 300 victories.

Under Sagastume, the Falcons captured nine of the school's 23 conference championships and four of the institution's 10 NCAA appearances. He was twice named MPSF "Coach of the Year," including sharing the award in 2006 with Jeremy Fishbein of New Mexico and Chad Ashton of Denver.

"Coach Sagastume leaves an impressive legacy for Air Force soccer," said Colonel Billy Walker, deputy director of athletics. "Lou has developed great teams, great players and great young men. More importantly, however, is that he has developed tremendous leaders of character who have gone on to do wonderful things for our Air Force and the nation. He will be very difficult to replace."

In 1993, Sagastume was named MPSF "Coach of the Year" for guiding the Falcons to their best season ever. Air Force posted a 15-5-1 record, won the MPSF Mountain Division and advanced to the NCAA tournament quarterfinals. Included in that tournament run was a 2-1, four-overtime win at No. 1 Creighton, played in sub-zero temperatures and a driving snowstorm.

Sagastume received a bachelor's degree from University of San Francisco in 1968, followed by master's in physical education from California State-Chico in 1975.

As a player at San Francisco, Sagastume was captain during his junior and senior seasons and was a member of the 1966 Dons NCAA champions. A native of Gutemala who now lives in Colorado Springs, he holds a United States Soccer Federation "A" license and was the first American to obtain an English "FA" coaching license.


Towson gives Olszewski a contract extension

Frank Olszewski
Frank Olszewski was rewarded for an undefeated regular season in the Colonial Athletic Association with a contract extension.
-- Towson University photo --

TOWSON, Md. -- Frank Olszewski, coach at Towson for the past 25 years, has accepted a three-year contract extension, extending the pact through the 2010 season.

I'm very pleased," Olszewski, 50, said. "It shows a commitment from the university. Given the circumstances of the team's success, the university thought it was a good move."

At 240-178-39 (.568), Olszewski is 25th in victories among active Division I men's coaches. Last season, Olszewski led the Tigers to a 15-2-3 record, the Colonial Athletic Association regular-season title at 10-0-1 and an at-large berth in the NCAA Division I tournament.

During his tenure, Towson has played in four conferences and Olszewski has been named "Coach of the Year" in three of them. He was voted the best coach in the East Coast Conference in 1989, the America East in 1995 and 1998, and the CAA last season.

"Frank has built an outstanding men's soccer program, which has represented the University well, both on and off the field, over the past 25 years," said Mike Hermann, the Towson director of athletics. "It's a pleasure to reach this agreement with Frank because he has done so much for Towson."

A 1978 graduate of Johns Hopkins University, located four miles from the Towson campus, Olszewski was a four-year starting defender and helped the Blue Jays reach the NCAA Division III Final Four in 1975. An alternate for the U.S. Olympic team in 1977, he became an assistant coach at Towson when Rich Bartos, his coach at Patapsco (Md.) High School, was named as the Tigers' coach in 1978.

Having served for four seasons as a part-time assistant to Bartos, he was promoted after Bartos died following a battle with leukemia in September 1982. After one season as interim coach, leading the Tigers to an 8-9-2 mark, the "interim" was removed from his title.


Arena becomes George Mason assistant

Kenny Arena
After a three-year career in Major League Soccer, Kenny Arena will try college coaching as an assistant at George Mason.
-- MetroStars photo --

FAIRFAX, Va. -- Kenny Arena, a former Major League Soccer player, was hired as an assistant to Greg Andrulis at George Mason.

Arena, 26, is the son of Bruce Arena, the former U.S. men's coach who now leads the New York Red Bulls in MLS.

"Kenny possesses tremendous experience as a player, having had success at the highest levels while playing with the United States national teams and in Major League Soccer," Andrulis said.

After a career as a midfielder at University of Virginia, where his father once coached, Arena spent three years in MLS. He played 10 games in each of his first two seasons (2003-04) with the MetroStars (now the Red Bulls), totaling one goal.

Arena was traded to D.C. United, a team his father coached to two MLS Cup championships (1996-97), but did not play in any league matches in 2005. United released him in November 2of that year.

Arena played for the U.S. under-20 men in the 2001 World Youth Championship in 2001, scoring one goal.

"Kenny's passion for the sport has led him to pursue a career in coaching at the collegiate level," Andrulis said.

Arena replaces Kris Kelderman, who is now an assistant coach with the MLS's Kansas City Wizards. Coincidentally, Kelderman played for Bruce Arena for four years at Virginia and on the two D.C. United MLS champs.

Gary Davidson is SoccerTimes publisher and managing editor.

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