Georgia Southwestern State Univ

GSW Athletics
800 Georgia Southwestern State Univ Dr AMERICUS, GA 31709
Division 2 Georgia Southeast
Public Small Competitive team


Email coach

Eric Crawford

Head men's soccer coach Eric Crawford comes to Georgia Southwestern from Northeastern State University in Tahlequah, Okla., where he served for three seasons as an assistant coach for the RiverHawks. He is the third head coach in GSW men's soccer history. In January 2021, Crawford was appointed as the Assistant Director of Athletics for Facilities where he is to oversee day-to-day operations, maintenance and management of all athletic facilities and playing fields, as well as concessions.

Prior to his time on the coaching staff at Northeastern State, Crawford was a four-year letterwinner for the RiverHawks. A native of Ontario, Canada, Crawford is the most decorated student-athlete in Northeastern State history. He is the first student-athlete in school history to be a finalist for the Ken B. Jones Award, presented to the female and male student-athletes of the year for the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association. Overall, Crawford is a two-time NSCAA All-American, a seven-time All-Region First Team performer and a three-time All-MIAA First Team honoree. He played at NSU in 2011 when the school was an independent and therefore was unable to be named All-MIAA all four years. He also sat out the 2014 season due to a medical redshirt.

Crawford played in 70 career matches and made 68 starts for NSU. He also captained a back line unit that recorded the three best defensive seasons in school history. He helped lead the RiverHawks to two appearances in the NCAA Championship, including one trip to the quarterfinals, and he also led the team to two MIAA Championships and three runner-up finishes during his career.

He also had a distinguished amateur career with the Toronto Lynx of the PDL and the Oakville Blue Devils of League 1 Ontario. Crawford was named an all-star in 2016, and won the league 1 championship, and the inter-provincial cup in 2015.

His career academic accomplishments included being named to the CoSIDA Academic All-District 7 First Team in both 2013 and 2015, and he was also selected to the 2015 NSCAA Men's Division I and Division II Scholar All-America Second Team. He was a four-time member of the MIAA Academic Honor Roll and a two-time MIAA Scholar-Athlete. He was named to NSU's Dean's List 10 times and was once selected to the President's Honor Roll.

Crawford graduated with a degree in Biology, and will be completing his masters degree in Health and Kinesiology.

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Email coach

Eric Shephard

Shephard, a native of Allen, Texas, enters his second season as the assistant men's soccer coach who will be in charge of the goalies. Shephard recently spent three years coaching at his alma mater, Northeastern State University in Tahlequah, Okla.

As a three-year letterman with the RiverHawks, Shephard was named to the 2013 All-MIAA Honorable Mention team as he played in 22 matches with 15 starts in the net. He recorded a career record of 10-3-4 and owns a career 1.04 GAA with a .759 saving percentage. Shephard ended his career with 63 saves while only allowing 20 goals in 1,726:35 minutes played. Shephard was the winning goalkeeper for NSU in the 2012 NCAA Round of 16, the first victory in NSU's history in the NCAA Championship.

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