William and Mary Tribe Women's Soccer Tradition
Updated: Wednesday 01/01/1999 (ET)
by TribeAthletics.com
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Since its inception in 1981, the William and Mary women's soccer program has had a tradition of winning that is unparalleled in the NCAA. Since its very first match on September 19, 1981 against Richmond, a 5-1 victory, the Tribe has made a habit of winning. In fact, the College has never seen a season with a losing record. For 34 consecutive years, William and Mary has had a winning season, an NCAA record. Along with all of its success in the regular season, the Tribe has also had its fair share of winning in the postseason, earning berths to the NCAA Tournament on 24 occasions, third all-time in the history of the NCAA.

In the infancy of the program, the College had its fair share of success. During the first six seasons under head coach John Charles, the Tribe had an overall record of 63-32-13, earning three-consecutive bids to the NCAA Championship beginning in 1984.

The program would begin to really begin to make itself known on the collegiate landscape in 1987, beginning with the promotion of John Daly as head coach before the season. Immediately upon his arrival, Daly put his own stamp on the team, leading W&M to a 10-7-3 mark during the regular season. But it was in the NCAA Tournament that season that William and Mary put itself on the soccer map, making a run all the way to the Elite Eight. From that season on, the College has been a perennial NCAA contender.

Daly would go on to rewrite William and Mary's record book for the next 26 seasons and solidify himself as one of the greatest soccer coaches in NCAA history. Daly has amassed a record of 361-145-43 (.699) in his 26 years as leader of the Tribe, becoming only the fourth coach in NCAA Division I history to amass 300 victories with the same school. To his credit, Daly has led the College to 10 CAA titles, garnered six Regional Coach of the Year honors, and five CAA Coach of the Year awards.

In 2004, Daly and former men's head coach Al Albert were each recognized by the College when the new all-grass stadium was named in their honor. In the eight years that the Tribe has played at Albert-Daly field, it has rung up an impressive record of 56-17-9 (.738) at the facility.

On the pitch, William and Mary has become nationally renowned for producing some of the finest players in the country. The program has produced two National Players of the Year, eight members of the CAA 25th Anniversary Team, 30 All-American honors, and five professionals.

In 1987, Megan McCarthy became the Tribe's first National Player of the Year. McCarthy had a brilliant career for the Green and Gold, earning the All-American accolades and twice being named All-Region.

Then in 1995, four-time All-American Natalie Neaton was named the ISAA National Player of the Year after a season in which the forward netted 19 goals and tallied 14 assists. In her illustrious career, Neaton racked up numerous honors, including two CAA Player of the Year awards and three All-CAA First Team accolades.

Along with the National Player of the Year awards, the Tribe has also produced some of the best CAA players in the conference's history. In 2009, the CAA announced the 25th Anniversary Team for women's soccer and the College was more than well represented. Eight former members of the Tribe were named to the 25-woman squad, double that of any other program. Along with Neaton, also named to the team were three-time All-Americans Ann Cook, Robin Lotze, Missy Wycinsky, and Claire Zimmeck, two-time All-American Dani Collins, 1989 All-American Stephanie Loehr, four-time All-CAA selections Carnie Moore and Lindsay Vanderspiegel.

Many of the College's greats have also received national recognition for their exceptional play at William and Mary. The Tribe has seen 13 of its players earn 30 All-American honors under head coach John Daly, highlighted by four-time selection Neaton and six three-time honorees.

Along with the collegiate success that many of the Tribe players have, a handful have also had the opportunity to play and showcase their skills on a professional level. In 2001, the Women's United Soccer Association (WUSA) held its inaugural draft that saw four former members of the Tribe get drafted, including two former greats getting picked in the first round. Ann Cook was selected with the fourth pick of the first round, while Carrie Moore picked 14th in the opening round. Also selected in that draft were Missy Wycinsky in the eighth round and Stephanie Loehr in the 11th round. More recently in 2009, Claire Zimmeck was drafted in the ninth round of the inaugural Women's Professional Soccer draft by the Washington Freedom. The following year, Dani Collins was taken in the seventh round (60th overall) of the WPS Draft by the Philadelphia Independence.

Soccer in Williamsburg is not just simply a seasonal event, it's a year-long tradition. The William and Mary soccer programs receive fantastic support from the student body and the residents of the Tidewater area, and these fans are rewarded for their support with a great product.

The success enjoyed by the College's student-athletes and the high-level of community involvement in the soccer programs combine to make the College of William and Mary a truly unique place in the soccer world.


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