Portland Timbers keeper coach Mike Toshack has taken the head coaching position with the St. Lawrence University Men's Soccer Team in Canton, NY, where Toshack was an assistant coach from 1994-2003.
Since his arrival with the Timbers in 2012, Toshack has been an obviously influential figure for the team's keepers, spending two years with 2013 Goalkeeper of the Year Donovan Ricketts and the first half of this season with highly touted newcomer Adam Kwarasey, who was the Timbers' stand out in their recent 3-1 U.S. Open Cup win over the Seattle Sounders.
Toshack, who worked with the Timbers in training today, will be with the team through the match against the Houston Dynamo on Saturday before departing for his new position. The season at St. Lawrence, which is only half an hour's drive away from Toshack's hometown of Prescott, Ontario, starts in mid-August.
The Timbers' press release:
TIMBERS GOALKEEPER COACH MIKE TOSHACK APPOINTED HEAD MEN’S SOCCER COACH AT ST. LAWRENCE UNIVERSITY
PORTLAND, Ore. – Portland Timbers goalkeeper coach Mike Toshack has been appointed head coach of the men’s soccer program at St. Lawrence University in Canton, N.Y., it was announced today. With the appointment, Toshack returns to the program where he started his coaching career in 1994.
A native of Prescott, Ontario, Toshack began his coaching career as an assistant coach at St. Lawrence University, serving on the coaching staff from 1994-2003. During his 10 years as part of the Saints coaching staff, he helped guide the team to an undefeated NCAA Division III National Championship season in 1999. Toshack also has served as the goalkeeper coach for the Canada U-20 National Team and coached in the 2001 FIFA World Youth (U-20) Championships in Argentina.
"I am grateful to Merritt Paulson, Gavin Wilkinson, Caleb Porter and the entire Timbers organization for the opportunity to coach for such a first-class club in the best soccer environment in the country," Toshack said. "As much as I will miss Portland and MLS, this opportunity with St. Lawrence was too great for me to pass up, and I am looking forward to returning to where I started my coaching career and the opportunities that await in my new role as the head coach of the Saints program."
Toshack will coach his final game with the Timbers at Providence Park on Saturday against the Houston Dynamo. Winning an MLS Cup with Houston in 2007, Toshack has served as Timbers goalkeeper coach since 2012, overseeing the play and development of the club’s goalkeepers for three-and-a-half seasons, including an MLS Goalkeeper of the Year campaign by Donovan Ricketts in 2013.
"On behalf of the organization I would like to sincerely thank Mike for his contributions to the Timbers," said Gavin Wilkinson, general manager of the Timbers. "Mike has been outstanding and an important member of this club for the last three-plus years, and we thank him for all of his remarkable efforts. Mike has been presented with an opportunity that is great for his family and we wish them nothing but the best in the next stage of their lives."
"I've thoroughly enjoyed having Tosh on my technical staff. He is a tremendous coach and person and his positive impact on our goalkeepers has been immense," said Caleb Porter, head coach of the Timbers. "I wish Mike and his family all the best as he transitions into his new and exciting role."
Prior to his arrival in Portland, Toshack served as the goalkeeper coach for Toronto FC from 2009-11 and was part of the Dynamo’s coaching staff in 2007 and 2008.
Before joining MLS, Toshack spent four seasons coaching in USL with the Montreal Impact (2002-03) and Vancouver Whitecaps (2005-06). In Montreal, he played a role in the development of Greg Sutton, who received USL First Division Goalkeeper of the Year honors in 2003.
Toshack becomes just the fourth head coach in the St. Lawrence program’s history, replacing former head coach Bob Durocher, who was appointed athletic director in April. Annually ranked among the Top 25 NCAA Division III programs by the NSCAA, St. Lawrence has captured the Liberty League regular-season and tournament championship the past two seasons and has earned 26 conference championships overall, including 16 since 1995.
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