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Newberry College

Newberry College Athletics
2100 College St Newberry, SC 29108
Division 2 South Carolina Southeast
Private Small Competitive team

Coaches

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Bryce Cooper

Bryce Cooper is entering his fifth season as the Newberry Men's Soccer head coach after being hired in January of 2016.


The 2019 campaign was a historic season for the Wolves. Cooper spear headed a Newberry squad that went 9-8 overall and 5-5 in conference play. Both win totals match the programs record in wins for a season. On October 5 his team defeated No. 12 Wingate 3-2 at home for Newberry's first win against a nationally ranked team since the 2011 season. His team also found themselves ranked in the southeast regional poll five different times throughout the season. The team made the SAC Championships as the seventh seed and loss in the first round to the two seed Queens 4-2. Cooper would coach two SAC Defensive Players of the Week (Leroy Zeller and Sam Ottley) and two All-SAC performers, Sam Ottley as second team and Ibrahim Nadir as first team. The Wolves would earn a United Soccer Coaches Team Academic Award for the sixth straight year and a third straight CoSIDA Google Cloud Academic All-District honoree in Vojin Manojlovic.


Most recently, Cooper led the Wolves to three wins and four ties, including earning crucial draws against Carson-Newman and Lincoln Memorial at the end of the regular season. The Wolves narrowly missed out on the SAC Championships with nine points total in conference play on the season. Cooper would coach two SAC Defensive Players of the Week (Tarek Malz and Brad Dixon) and two All-SAC Honorable Mention honorees (Fabrizio Bucco and Ibrahim Nadir). The Wolves would earn a United Soccer Coaches Team Academic Award and a second straight CoSIDA Google Cloud Academic All-District honoree in Fabrizio Bucco.


In his first season as Newberry head coach, Cooper would earn two more wins and two more ties than the previous season. Other notables include eight more points in the conference, nine more goals scored, and seven fewer goals allowed. The team would also earn the NSCAA (National Soccer Coaches Association) team academic award for the fall season with an overall 3.42 team GPA.


The Wolves had a very productive season, making an appearance in the 2017 South Atlantic Conference Men's Soccer Championship. The Wolves made the tournament for the first time since the 2009 season. Newberry went 5-9-3 and earned the eight seed in the tourney.


Under the direction of Cooper, the team was also awarded the United Soccer Coaches team academic award for the third consecutive season. The Wolves posted a 3.32 overall team grade-point average last year. Newberry also racked up on post season awards, with Till Neumann nabbing the conference Freshman of the Year. With the coaching of Cooper, Neumann was able to make the D2CCA All-Southeast Region Second Team. Tobias Henriksen and Fabrizio Bucco also received conference honorable mention honors.


Cooper led the team to finish 3rd in the league in scoring. The team also saw its first All-American in program history in senior Quincy Kroeschell. Newberry was not only top tier in scoring, but they led the conference in saves on the season.


Cooper joined the Newberry family in 2016 after serving as assistant men's soccer coach at Duquesne University for the past three seasons. In his tenure, the Dukes twice qualified for the Atlantic 10 conference tournament with 10 players earning allA10 honors and one Academic All-America. The Dukes also won the NSCAA Team Academic Award with a team grade point average above 3.0 in all three of Cooper's seasons on the Pittsburgh campus.


At Duquesne, Cooper assisted in all aspects of the program including developing, planning and leading training sessions, recruiting, organizing all team travel, academic monitoring and scheduling, game management and analysis, video analysis, running and organizing camps, organizing team equipment and apparel, coordinating and establishing an alumni database and organizing opponent scouting.


Cooper came to Duquesne after spending the 2012 season at Saint Francis, Pa. Prior to that, he spent three seasons as an assistant at Butler.


While at Saint Francis, Cooper helped the Red Flash advance to the final of the Northeast Conference Championship, only to fall to Fairleigh Dickinson on penalty kicks. Cooper helped coach three All-NEC and two all-region players for a SFU team that ranked 16th nationally in goals against average.


Cooper was responsible for helping in all aspects of the Red Flash program, including leading and organizing training sessions, working with the goalkeepers, working with academic advisors and staff to ensure players were excelling in the classroom, recruiting, game analysis, opponent scouting, organizing travel, managing equipment and gear and organizing and leading residential and day camps. Under Cooper's tutelage, the SFU team was recognized by the NSCAA with a team academic award for posting a 3.24 team GPA.


One of Cooper's pupils, goalkeeper Danny Valcicak, earned All-NEC first team honors after posting eight shutouts and a 0.89 goals against average, which ranked fourth nationally in 2012. Cooper was also active in helping assemble a recruiting class that featured several players who competed in the US Soccer Development Academy system.


At Butler, Cooper was part of a staff that made NCAA Championship appearances in 2009 and 2010. The 2010 Bulldogs, who went 15-0-2 in winning the Horizon League title (16-1-3 overall), advanced to the second round of the 2010 NCAA tourney. Three BU players earned All-American honors and two were drafted into Major League Soccer following the season that saw the Bulldogs ranked No. 11 by the NSCAA.


Before coaching collegiately, Cooper posted a 35-10-0 record in guiding Indianapolis Roncalli HS to a pair sectional championships and regional titles. In 2007, he was named the Indianapolis Star Super Team "Coach of the Year" after leading the Rebels to two of the most successful seasons in school history.


In addition to his college and high school experience, Cooper has also had coaching success at the club level. He led several club teams at Carmel United Soccer Club in Carmel, Ind., guiding one to a State Cup Championship and Regional berth. He also served as a trainer and assistant coach for the Indiana United Development Academy team at Carmel United.


As a player, Cooper spent four years at the University of Southern Indiana, helping the Screaming Eagles to three Great Lakes Valley Conference tournament appearances.


After graduating from USI, Cooper served in the Army National Guard for six years and earned the rank of First Lieutenant. During that time, Bryce was deployed to Iraq for a 13-month deployment in support of OIF (Operation Iraqi Freedom) and earned the bronze star.


Cooper currently holds a USSF B license and a NSCAA Premier Diploma. He earned a bachelor's degree in sociology from USI in 2004 and received his teaching license from Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis in 2010.


Cooper and his wife Courtney have two daughters, Stori and Priya.

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Zach Watson

Zach Watson was hired as an assistant men's soccer coach in January and enters his first season with the Wolves.


Originally from Bridgewater, Mass., Watson was an assistant coach at Curry College in Boston for the past two years. There, he worked with the goalkeepers, who led the conference in saves in 2019. He also assisted in all aspects of the program. While at Curry, Watson also coached teams with Steel United and ran the goalkeeper program for the Boston region. In addition, he has worked with the New England Revolution of MLS as an academy staff coach.


"I'm thrilled to join the Newberry family!" Watson commented. "Having played in the SAC, I'm familiar with the schools and their high level of play. The program has grown tremendously over the years, and I am excited to be a part of it and help continue the growth."


Watson played collegiately as a goalkeeper at Sacred Heart University from 2014-17 and at nearby Coker in 2018. He graduated with a bachelor's degree in Criminal Justice in 2018 and a master's degree in College Athletic Administration in 2019. He currently holds his USSF D License, a USC Advanced National Diploma, and a Level 1 GK diploma. He is also a Regional level referee and has done numerous high level events including the UPSL National Quarterfinal in 2019.

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