Thanks to a save by the NCAA, Fort Lewis College got to keep its goalkeeper.
FLC athletic director Kelly Higgins announced Tuesday night that alumna Bree Baker officially has joined the Skyhawks womens soccer program. Baker, who played at FLC from 2005 to 08, was hired as an assistant coach on head coach Damian Clarkes staff.
The position was funded in part by the NCAA Division II Coaching Enrichment Grant, which the college applied for earlier this year.
The grant, according to the news release, was established to address the issues of access, recruitment, selection and longterm success of women, ethnic minorities and other individuals in Division II who seek to overcome hiring barriers. The grant helps create assistant coaching positions within the division.
Were very thankful to the NCAA for the grant as it will go a long way toward helping our womens soccer team achieve its goals and, in the process, allow Bree to start working on achieving her professional aspirations as well, Higgins said in the news release. Shes a great addition to the program.
Baker served as a student assistant coach for last years team that went 18-3-3 overall and won its third Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference Tournament championship in four years. She also has served as an assistant girls soccer coach at Durango High School the last two years, and she recently was appointed the assistant director of the Durango Youth Soccer Association (DYSA).
Clarkes assistants this season are Todd Padgett, Jason McDermid, Jason Beswick and Baker.
Bree is a dedicated alum who has always proven her worth through her strong work ethic, said Clarke, who coached Baker during her playing days. Shes developing into a fantastic young coach who is a big part of the community with the work she does for DYSA.
Baker was in goal for the Skyhawks surprise RMAC Tournament championships in 2006 and 07 and was the Most Valuable Player in the 06 tourney. The academic All-RMAC performer and magna cum laude graduate holds program records for victories (33) and shutouts (23), and she was 33-17-5 overall in 55 career starts.
Its a privilege, Baker said in the news release.
She called herself lucky to play with a talented group of teammates who helped shape the Skyhawks program into an RMAC and regional force.
Every class we had broke records, she said. We were a group that made the program better every single year. As a coach, Id like the opportunity to help them do the same thing.