Neidell wins gold at Maccabiah Games

WKU head women’s soccer coach Jason Neidell notched an impressive mark this week by coaching his USA squad to the gold medal in the 18th Maccabiah Games in Israel. The rosters are made up of Jewish athletes.

Former Lady Topper player Catie Chase joined Neidell on the team. The team shut out the competition 32-0, including beating host Israel 4-0 in the championship match.

This is a significant feat for Neidell, because it’s further proof that the man can flat-out coach. He started the Lady Topper soccer program in 2000 and has only had one losing season in the nine seasons since, including winning the Sun Belt Conference regular season title in 2007 and leading the team to the finals of the Sun Belt tournament last season.

Not only is Neidell a great coach, but also an insightful person — as demonstrated in a column I did on him in 2008. A Yale graduate who sees soccer as an outlet and a way to reach others, he gets his influences from historic figures such as Malcolm X on leadership and courage.

This is a great start for Neidell with a majority of his talent coming back, including SBC Player of the Year senior Morgan Thomas and redshirt sophomore Mallory Outerbridge who returns from her time with the Canadian Junior National Team.

It’s a noteworthy achievement that may fuel further success this season.

-David Harten

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