TACOMA, Washington – Joe Vari announced he is resigning from his position as Puget Sound's women's soccer head coach. He accepted the head coaching position at Bates College, a NCAA Division-III program in Lewiston, Maine.
Vari, an Ohio native, makes a return to the Eastern seaboard. He played soccer collegiately at Hiram in Ohio, and he earned his master's degree at Lynchburg in Virginia. His wife, Beverly, is from Virginia.
"It was a very difficult decision for Beverly and I to make, as we have made some lifelong friends in the short time here in the Pacific Northwest," said Vari. "But we could not turn down the opportunity to move closer to family. The core of our family is on the East Coast. I am in debt to all of the growth that has occurred for us in our time in Tacoma. Puget Sound, Tacoma, and especially this program, will have a special place in our hearts. It truly is one of the best places on the West Coast."
Vari won 13 games in each of his three seasons with the Loggers, posting an overall record of 39-16-8 (.683). He was named the 2018 Northwest Conference Coach of the Year after leading the Loggers to the conference title and an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.
During that 2018 season, senior goaltender Jamie Lange was named the NWC Defensive Player of the Year for the second consecutive year, and defender Kylee Roath was named the NWC Freshman of the Year. Additionally, junior forward Gabbie Berg led the NWC in scoring with 10 goals and 24 points.
"We are grateful for Joe's leadership that allowed for the Puget Sound women's soccer program to continue its prominence in Northwest Conference play, culminating with the 2018 conference title," said Puget Sound Director of Athletics Amy Hackett. "Joe was also instrumental in improving recruitment efforts for all of our sports programs. We appreciate Joe and Bev's desire to be closer to family and wish them well."
"I am thankful to Amy for taking a risk on a coach that wasn't from this region three years ago," said Vari. "I am still honored to have been able to help continue the great tradition of women's soccer here at Puget Sound. But really, it is the student-athletes who are vastly responsible for this program's continued excellence. The combination of returning Loggers and first-year Loggers will be a force in the NWC this fall."
Before coming to Puget Sound in 2016, Vari compiled a record of 75-43-14 (.621) as the head coach at Rhodes College. The Lynx were Southern Athletic Association (SAA) Tournament finalists in 2012, 2014, and 2015. Rhodes College earned a share of regular-season SAA title in 2012.