Men’s Soccer: Coaches awarded for being best in America

Men's Soccer: Coaches awarded for being best in America

Casey Delich

Head coach Terry Davila (left) and assistant coach Yossi Raz (right) were recognized as top coaches for one of the most successful seasons in Matadors’ soccer history. Photo credit: Loren Townsley / Photo Editor

Leading the Matadors men’s soccer team to their first Big West Championship and an NCAA Tournament berth, head coach Terry Davila and assistant Yossi Raz have garnered national attention.

Davila was honored by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America with the Regional Coach of the Year (Far West) in Indianapolis on Saturday. He was also nominated for NSCAA National Coach of the Year against seven other coaches.

“When you win an award like that its definitely a product of your players, the support of your administration, and the putting together of a great staff,” Davila said. “I have an outstanding staff that handles things throughout the program, Yossi organizing recruiting and practice sessions, Zach Feldman with film breakdown, Peter with goalkeeping, Jeff with conditioning, and our medical staff.”

Raz was named one of the top 15 assistant coaches in the country by College Soccer News. A former player of CSUN from 2001-2004, Raz joined the coaching staff in 2005, helping lead the team to a .539 winning percentage in eight seasons.

“Us receiving awards as coaches is a product of the environment we worked in this year and I’m excited and humbled that the other coaches voted (for) me,” Raz said.

This is the second Regional Coach of the Year award for Matador coaches. Marwan Ass’ad, Davila’s mentor, received the award before CSUN joined Division I.

“It’s kind of nice, coach still helps me now to this day and Yossi,” Davila said. “It’s very important to us that we are getting some of the awards that he got, it means we are doing something right.”

Matching the teams highest victory total since joining Division I play – 15 – Davila and Raz were at the helm of a resurgence that saw the Matadors be competitive in the tough Big West Conference. Playing a tough non-conference schedule that included nationally ranked University of San Diego and Georgetown, the Matadors came into the conference schedule with a 6-3 record.

Northridge attained its first national ranking since the 2009 season, entering the NCAA Tournament ranked 25th by the NSCAA.

An overtime loss to visiting University of San Diego during the first round of the NCAA Tournament ended the Matadors season early.

Leading one of the most dominant defensive and offensive teams in the Big West Conference, the Matadors ranked near the top in every category, claiming multiple awards. Davila also earned the Big West Coach of the Year award, his fifth since becoming the head coach in 2001.

Since 2001, when the Big West reinstated men’s soccer, coaches’ from the Big West have won the Regional Award five times.

“This league is the most physical and athletic league in the nation, there are a lot of incredible athletes in our league and its very tight,” Davila said. “Being a part of this league is extremely difficult, it brings out the best in the players and coaches. Big West is probably one of the most premier conferences in the nation.”