Casey Stoney has been named the NWSL Coach of the Year after leading the San Diego Wave to the playoffs in their first year in the league.
Behind Stoney, the Wave became first expansion club in NWSL history to reach the postseason, and they didn’t just sneak into a playoff berth. San Diego finished the regular season with a 10-6-6 record and the No. 3 seed before falling to the No. 2 Portland Thorns in the semifinals.
Stoney, 40, becomes just the second woman to win the league’s top coaching award.
She led the most successful expansion team in @NWSL history.LFG @CaseyStoney 👏 pic.twitter.com/F34wQSsaes— San Diego Wave FC (@sandiegowavefc) October 26, 2022
She led the most successful expansion team in @NWSL history.LFG @CaseyStoney 👏 pic.twitter.com/F34wQSsaes
Earlier Wednesday, San Diego’s Kailen Sheridan was named Goalkeeper of the Year.
Rookie defender Naomi Girma has been nominated for the Rookie of the Year, Defender of the Year and MVP, and star striker Alex Morgan also has been nominated for MVP, but the winners of those awards have not yet been announced.
The Wave surged to a 4-1-0 record in their first five matches of the regular season, including three straight wins to start the campaign.
The team allowed just 21 goals across 22 matches, and they outscored their opponents 32-20.
Stoney joined the NWSL and the Wave in 2021 ahead of the franchise’s inaugural season. The former English national team captain served as manager of Women’s Super League club Manchester United from 2018-21.
OL Reign head coach Laura Harvey finished second in voting, and Kansas City Current head coach Matt Potter came in third. Potter’s team will face the Thorns at 8 p.m. ET Saturday in the NWSL Championship at Audi Field in Washington.