ALBANY Caitlin Colfer is making the leap from the NCAA Division III to the Division I level.
One year after coaching the Sage College women’s soccer team, the Colonie Central High School graduate is guiding the University at Albany into the 2013 season.
“I’m just thankful for the opportunity and very thankful that they thought of me as the one they wanted for the job,” said Colfer.
The UAlbany position opened at the end of May when Mary-Frances Monroe took the head coaching job at the University of Miami. Colfer was hired at the end of July, one month before the Great Danes were scheduled to play their first game.
“We did have over 120 people apply for the job, and we could have gone deeper into the pool,” said UAlbany athletic director Dr. Lee McElroy. “Caitlin was one of four finalists we brought in to be interviewed. We thought she looked good on paper and when we interviewed her in person, she looked even better to us. We just thought she had the enthusiasm and had the energy we were looking for.”
“I’m very humbled that they were willing to off the job to someone as young as me,” said the 26-year-old Colfer.
With a short time to get to know her new team before the Aug. 23 opener against Florida Atlantic University, Colfer said she started by calling each player. She also hired Nick Bochette to be her assistant coach.
“With any new coaching staff, there is a period of transition for the players,” said Colfer. “The girls have been very good about the transition. They’re respecting the new staff, which is always important.”
Colfer’s first UAlbany roster features 16 veterans returning from a team that finished 3-4-1 in America East and 6-10-3 overall last year. One dozen freshmen that Monroe recruited are joining the Great Danes.