April 2 2019, Chris Snyder, athletic director, announced that Seton Hill head women’s coach Andy McNab has stepped down from the position.
Since then, a cross-country search for a new head coach has taken place.
As of May 2019 Seton Hill University has announced and hired Zak Kruger as the new head coach for the women’s soccer team.
“I am so excited to work with the student athletes at Seton Hill. My focus is going to be on how I can best support them and how I can help make a difference in their lives,” said Kruger. “I am a believer in people and positive culture. We [the staff] are excited to see the growth of character and positive relationships needed in order to build a culture centered around our core values.”
Kruger is from Hanover, Pa., a small town just outside of Gettysburg in York County where his parents still reside. He has attended and played at Millersville University. During his time at Millersville, Kruger got his bachelor’s in technology education and received a minor in coaching.
“I also spent two years at Shippensburg University for my master’s in education with a focus on curriculum and instruction,” Kruger said.
Kruger has went on to coach at a few other schools prior to his arrival at SHU. For the last year Kruger was the head coach for the women’s soccer team at Wilson College in Chambersburg, Pa. Prior to Wilson College, Kruger was the assistant coach at Shippensburg University for two seasons for both the men and women’s teams.
“I also made stops at Millersville University, Lancaster Bible College, Arundel High School and Penn Manor High School in various roles,” Kruger said.
Besides playing a role in coaching, Kruger has also worked with many clubs over the years. In 2010 during his time as assistant coach at Millersville University for the men and women’s soccer teams he was also working at the Penn Manor Soccer Club.
“I am very thankful to have worked with so many amazing people early on in my career. These people helped shape me into the person and coach that I am today,” Kruger said.
With all the prior coaching experience, Kruger is ready to transition to a new setting and team.
“Seton Hill University feels like home to me. Everyone has been welcoming to me and my family. I am really looking forward to being here and having this amazing opportunity,” Kruger said.
“One of the things that I have learned to help me through transition is to identify my inner circle and to know my support system. I have been leaning pretty heavily on my inner circle the last few weeks and I am thankful for those individuals.” Kruger said. “My wife Olivia has been a constant support for me during this time of transition and we are both incredibly excited to be joining the family of Seton Hill.”
While the support from family and friends is helping Kruger adjust to SHU, past experiences has helped Kruger get ready for the new road ahead.
“I have been really fortunate to work under some great coaches. I had the opportunity to see how they provide structure and balance expectations to their programs,” Kruger said.
“I am excited to take what I have learned over the last few years combined with my own personality and twist and apply it to the program here at Seton Hill,” Kruger said.
Helping others is a passion of Kruger’s and something he wants to embed within the women’s soccer program here at SHU.
“We are in the people business. My biggest asset is that I love to see people be successful and I will work as hard as I can for others to find success in whatever area that is. Success is different to everyone and I just want to help others achieve their goals and to find success,” Kruger said.
Transitioning into his new role as the SHU women’s soccer head coach, Kruger already has goals in mind to help the program reach success and work together.
“We will go through a process as a team to determine the season goals in collaboration with the staff’s goals and expectations. Some of my personal goals for the program are to be competitive in the West, minimally reach a PSAC Semi Final and an NCAA tournament appearance. It is time for SHU to become a consistent competitor in postseason play. Our aim should be for a conference title and NCAA tournament appearance,” Kruger said.
During the 2018 season, the SHU women’s soccer team finished their season with a record of 12-5-1 and 11-4-1 in PSAC play. The 2018 women’s soccer team earned a sixth seed in the PSAC tournament.
The season was one of the two best seasons for the 2018 team.
Published By: Caitlin Srager