University of Chicago men’s soccer head coach Julianne Sitch made history on Saturday, leading her team to the NCAA title. In doing so, she became the first woman to lead an NCAA men’s soccer team to a championship as a head coach.
With a 2-0 defeat of Williams College in the Division III title game, the school won its first-ever national championship.
HISTORY MADE.@uchicagoath's Julianne Sitch becomes the first woman to lead a men's soccer program to a national championship!#D3soc | #WhyD3 pic.twitter.com/oGxIBebt8R— NCAA Division III (@NCAADIII) December 3, 2022
HISTORY MADE.@uchicagoath's Julianne Sitch becomes the first woman to lead a men's soccer program to a national championship!#D3soc | #WhyD3 pic.twitter.com/oGxIBebt8R
“The credit goes to the team – I mean, these guys have never had a female coach before, and they embraced me as one of their own. And for me, that will forever be a grateful moment,” Sitch said following the game.
“Just to watch them play, I’m extremely proud. They wear their heart on their sleeve, they show up every day. The energy, the support, the togetherness, this is a team. We had a heck of a lot of fun this year, and this is a really great way to end our season.”
This year is her first as head coach of the men’s team at UChicago. She left the Chicago Red Stars in April, where she was an assistant coach, for the gig. Previously, she had been an assistant coach for the UChicago women’s team from 2015 to 2017.
In her first season, Sitch led the Maroons to a 22-0-1 record, the team’s best ever.
A former standout at DePaul, Sitch also played for the NWSL’s Chicago Red Stars.