April 30, 2007
CLEMSON, SC – Laurie Pells, one of the nation’s top goalkeeping coaches, has been named an assistant coach for women’s soccer at the University of Maryland, head coach Brian Pensky announced today.
Pells goes to Maryland after spending the previous six years as an assistant coach at Clemson. During that time, the Lady Tigers reached the NCAA Tournament each year, including the 2006 Elite Eight and the 2001 Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament and a number 11 final ranking.
Clemson’s defense has been outstanding since Pells began coaching the goalkeepers. Over the last six years, Clemson has registered 53 team shutouts and allowed just over one goal per match.
Prior to coaching at Clemson, Pells was an assistant coach at the College of New Jersey for three years. While there, the Lions won the 2000 NCAA Division III National Championship. The College of New Jersey was semifinalist in 1999 and finalist in 1998 at the NCAA Division III National Tournament.
Pells graduated from Georgian Court College (Lakewood, N.J.) with a B.A. degree in elementary education and psychology in 1998. At Georgian Court College, she was a starting goalkeeper for four seasons and was a three-time NSCAA and NAIA All-America goalkeeper. While at Georgian Court College, she led her team to the NAIA Final Four in 1994 and 1995 and the quarterfinals in 1997. In her senior season in 1997, she was selected as one of the top 16 players in the nation by being named to the Umbro Select Elite 16.
During her time at GCC, she set the NSCAA national record with 57 career shutouts as a goalkeeper and was named conference player of the year as a senior. Pells was also named the New Jersey Women of the Year after her sophomore season.
Pells graduated with a master’s degree from the College of New Jersey in the spring of 2001 from the School of Counseling.
“On one hand, this is very difficult as Coach Pells is very talented and popular with the players” said Clemson Head Coach Todd Bramble. “On the other hand, we know this is a great opportunity for her, and that brings us comfort.”
“Laurie Pells embodies everything a coach could ask for in a staff member. I certainly appreciate the passionate contributions she made to our program on many levels.”
Pells played two years in the W-League with the Delaware Genies. Pells was drafted by the Philadelphia Charge in the Women’s United Soccer Association (WUSA) Professional League and played one season in the summer of 2001.
Pells is a director for former US National Team coach Tony DiCicco with SoccerPlus Goalkeeper School. She is a member of the ODP Region I coaching staff.
Pells served on the coaching staff with the U14 Girls U.S. National Team in the summer of 2006.
Pells has her USSF B Coaching License and NSCAA Advance National Goalkeeper License.
“Clemson University has been a first class place to work,” said Pells. I will treasure my six years there being an assistant coach. The experience I had working with Todd Bramble and the Clemson Athletic Department will be a tremendous asset as I move forward as a soccer coach.”
“In addition, I would like to thank Athletic Director, Terry Don Phillips and Associate Athletic Director, Dwight Rainey for giving me the opportunity to coach at this wonderful university.”
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