Women’s Soccer Season with new coach Mark Hiemenz
When the Bronco Women’s Soccer team began its season on September 2, its head coach, Mark Hiemenz, had only been in the position for a month and a week. He was appointed after Ted Flogaites departed to become Head Coach at Western Illinois University.
Coaching a team he had not recruited through a schedule he had not arranged was no easy task, but the 1997 DePauw graduate who had served as Assistant Coach at Boise State University was up to the challenge as was the team.
“Coming into a situation where both the players and coaching staff were uncertain about their futures was very tough, and it took some time to get acquainted,” said Hiemenz. “In fact, we’re still going through the growing pains because we’re still learning about each other. However, we’ve remained steadfast in our goals of playing entertaining soccer and winning the conference championship. I firmly believe the tough times and difficult schedule have made us better and more competitive.”
The Broncos began their GPAC play winless but, employing Coach Hiemenz’s up-tempo, aggressive philosophy on the pitch, went 9-0-1 through their conference schedule, thus earning the regular season championship title. With wins over Dakota Wesleyan and Morningside in the GPAC Women’s Soccer Tournament, the Broncos landed in the championship game where they lost to Doane.
Although the team did not qualify for nationals, Jenn Lerner garnered Hauff Mid-America Sports/GPAC Defensive Player of the Year honors while Hiemenz was named Hauff Mid-America Sports/GPAC Coach of the Year. For a complete list of players earning GPAC honors, go to: http://www.gpacsports.com/docs/pdfs/AllConf/WSoccer/GPACWSOCALLCONF2012.PDF.
Fun Fact: Mark’s wife, Katie (Lang) Hiemenz coached the HC Bronco Women’s Soccer team in 2006 after serving as a graduate assistant under the program’s first head coach, Dale Behrens.