Veteran coach Kevin Sherry selected to lead EMCC’s reinstated soccer program
Published 1:32 pm Friday, December 16, 2022
SCOOBA – Noted for turning around collegiate soccer programs and with 229 career wins during two successful decades as a collegiate head coach to his credit, Kevin Sherry has been hired as East Mississippi Community College’s head soccer coach for the Lions’ reinstated men’s and women’s programs. The announcement was made Friday by EMCC Director of Athletics Sharon Thompson.
A native of Grantham, England, Sherry is charged with reviving an EMCC soccer program that was suspended following the 2009 season.
“I would like to thank EMCC Director of Athletics Sharon Thompson and EMCC President Dr. Scott Alsobrooks for the opportunity to lead the East Mississippi Community College soccer program moving forward,” Sherry said. “It is an honor and a privilege to serve as EMCC’s head men’s and women’s soccer coach. I’m excited to be a member of the EMCC athletics family and delighted to be a part of an institution of excellence.”
Following head women’s coaching stints at Louisiana Tech University (2007-21), Western Illinois University (2005-06) and Graceland University (2001-04), Sherry served as an assistant women’s coach the past two years at Grambling State University. During his 20-year career as a collegiate head women’s soccer coach, Sherry has compiled an overall head coaching record of 229-123-46, including 18 seasons with overall records of .500 or better and 14 seasons with double-figure win totals. Overall during that time, he has guided teams to 11 conference tournament appearances, including a championship at Graceland, a runner-up finish at WIU and three semifinal-round showings at Tech.
“I want to welcome Coach (Kevin) Sherry and his wife, Isabel, to our EMCC family,” Thompson said. “He brings a wealth of experience and knowledge that will be instrumental in the implementation of our men’s and women’s soccer programs. I look forward to working with him, and we are excited to have soccer back on our Scooba campus next fall.”
Most recently, Sherry coached the Shreveport United Cabosa Club Team in addition to expanding his extensive international coaching experience by serving as the first lead coach of the Guyana Women’s National Team during its meteoric rise in the CONCACAF/FIFA rankings during the 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification. Sherry also recently served a three-year stint (2019-21) on the NCAA Men’s and Women’s Soccer Rules Committee.
After previously turning around the women’s soccer fortunes at Graceland and Western Illinois earlier in the decade, Sherry took charge of the Louisiana Tech’s fledgling women’s program in 2007. With the Lady Techsters managing just 11 total wins in the three years prior to his arrival in Ruston, Sherry’s 10-5-5 Tech team made an eight-win improvement between his first and second years at the helm to rank as one of four most improved teams to be recognized by the NCAA in 2008.
Sherry’s Lady Techsters sustained that success for the next dozen years as they transitioned from the Western Athletic Conference to Conference USA. While still in the WAC and coming off a 12-7-1 year in 2009, Tech set a school record for most wins (15) in a single season the following year while finishing tied for third in the conference standings and hosting the 2010 WAC Tournament. In their final year competing in the WAC, the 2012 Lady Techsters went 12-5-4 overall and made the postseason tournament for the second time in three years to earn Sherry his first of four eventual Louisiana Coach of the Year honors from the Louisiana Sports Writers Association.
Under Sherry’s continued leadership, Louisiana Tech made a seamless transition into Conference USA by recording six consecutive seasons (2014-19) that featured double-digit overall victories, winning conference records and C-USA Tournament appearances each year. During that span, the Lady Techsters advanced to the tournament semifinals three times – 2014 and back-to-back in 2017 and 2018.
Sherry’s collegiate head coaching career began with a four-year stay at Graceland University, an NAIA school headquartered in Iowa. After taking over a women’s soccer program that had never posted a winning season prior to his arrival in 2001, Sherry improved the Yellowjackets’ overall win total during each of his four seasons at the helm. A breakeven 7-7-1 mark in his first year was followed by overall records of 12-7-1 and 16-2-3 the next two seasons. Graceland’s transformation culminated with an unbeaten (18-0-5) season in 2004 that included a Heart of America Athletic Conference championship and an NAIA Final Four appearance. Sherry was rewarded for his coaching efforts by earning regional and conference coach of the year honors, while the 2004 team was honored six years later with an induction into Graceland’s Athletics Wall of Fame.
During his next stop at Western Illinois, Sherry put together a two-year overall mark of 20-13-4 that was highlighted by an 11-7-1 record and a runner-up finish in the 2006 Mid-Continent Conference Tournament.
Sherry also owns an impressive international coaching resume that currently includes a four-year association as the lead assistant coach for the Guyana women’s national team. He was previously the head men’s soccer coach at Nagoya Gakuin University and the Aichi F.C. Nagoya junior youth head coach in Japan prior to his four-year stint at Graceland. Sherry also worked two years (1992-93) as the director of soccer coaching and player youth development for the Al Nahda National Schools organization in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.
As a student-athlete, Sherry played for the West London Institute of Higher Education, where he was a member of the 1987 British National College Championship. He was selected to play for the FISEC Great Britain U-18 team and went on to play for Bangor City in the United Kingdom and for Morning Star in Hong Kong.
Sherry received undergraduate degrees in physical education/sports science and sociology from Bangor University in Wales, as well as having earned his master’s degree from Leicester University in England. He owns the United States Soccer Federation’s “A” license and the U.E.F.A. “International” coaching license from England.
Sherry, and his wife of 28 years, Isabel, are the proud owners of three dogs, Huck, Finn and Becky.