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Coaching StaffErica Walsh: Head coach Erica Walsh enters her eighth season at the helm of the Penn State women's soccer program in 2014.
The Nittany Lions appeared in their 19th-straight NCAA Tournament in 2013, due in part to the success of senior Maya Hayes. The sixth-overall selection in the WPSL draft, Hayes set Penn State's single season record for points (79) and finished her career ranked third in goals scored (71) and points (163), sixth in game-winning goals (17) and seventh in shots (291). Hayes also became the seventh M.A.C. Hermann Award Trophy semifinalist in program history.
Walsh's 2012 Nittany Lions were the most successful team in program history after advancing to their first-ever national title game. The Nittany Lions won 21 of 27 games and were unbeaten in Big Ten action with a 10-0-1 record. The Lions registered their 15th consecutive Big Ten title and 18th-straight NCAA Tournament appearance. The 15-title mark stands as the most consecutive Big Ten Championships by a women's program, along with the present Northwestern tennis team.
Senior Christine Nairn became just the seventh Nittany Lion to finish as a finalist for the prestigous Missouri Athletic Club's Hermann Trophy in 2012 under Walsh's tutelage while junior Maya Hayes was named a semifinalist for the award.
Walsh's success was recognized at the conference and national level as she earned Big Ten Coach of the Year and NSCAA National Coach of the Year honors.
Ann Cook:Ann Cook is entering her eighth season with the Nittany Lions in 2014. This will also be the eighth season that Cook will be coaching under former teammate and friend Erica Walsh. The two combined for many wins on the field at William & Mary and have already shown their prowess on the sidelines together, as they led the squad to six consecutive Big Ten titles.
For the eighth consecutive year, in 2014, Cook traveled to Central America with an organization called Soccer Without Borders. The organization focuses on using soccer as a tool for youth development around the world. The exchange team has coached nearly 800 girls, trained more than 45 coaches and, in 2013, played two friendly matches against the Nicaraguan Women's National Team.
Prior to PSU, Cook was an assistant coach at Nebraska for two seasons. Cook was responsible for numerous tasks while at Nebraska including individual and team training, recruiting, video analysis and scheduling. She also worked closely as the staff's liaison to the Huskers' athletic support staff.
Tim Wassel: Tim Wassell returns Penn State for his fifth season in 2014. With the Nittany Lions, he is the primary recruiter and focuses on the team's goalkeepers.
Over three seasons from 2007-09 at Penn State Altoona, Wassell led the women's program to a 48-11-5 overall record, taking home NSCAA Great Lakes Coach of the Year honors in 2008. He was also named the Allegheny Mountain Collegiate Conference (AMCC) Coach of the Year in 2007 and 2008.
While with the Nittany Lions in Altoona, Wassell's defense-oriented teams posted 39 shutouts in 64 games as the squad set new marks for wins in every year of his tenure with 13, 17 and 18, respectively. During the 2008 campaign, the squad posted the third-best goals against average in Division III at 0.34.