South Alabama soccer coach leaves for Arizona State

winkworthMOBILE, AL (WNSP) — It’s the end of an era for South Alabama soccer.

Jaguar head coach Graham Winkworth has been named to the same position in the Arizona State women’s soccer program, according to a press release from South Alabama.

Winkworth posted a 66-18-7 (.764) overall record in four seasons with the Jags. The team won three straight Sun Belt regular season titles and four Sun Belt Tournaments, reaching the NCAA Tournament each year.

“Simply put, Graham has transformed the women’s soccer program at the University of South Alabama,” USA  athletics director Joel Erdmann said. “What has been accomplished in his time here is simply astounding, we deeply appreciate his leadership and service.  We wish him nothing but the best and will forever be appreciative of his time as a Jaguar.”

In his time, the Jags won nine postseason Sun Belt awards, and 20 girls were named to all-Sun Belt squads. Winkworth himself won conference coach of the year honors in 2014 and 2015.

“I first want to thank President [Tony] Waldrop for his support and providing me the opportunity to work here at this wonderful school,” Winkworth said. “I cannot thank Dr. Erdmann enough for how he has influenced my career and life. No words can explain my level of gratitude to him, but it has been amazing to be part of this first-class department. Jinni Frisbey, my supervisor these last few years, deserves an immense amount of credit and thanks.

“Jinni will always be special to my family and I consider her my sister for life.

Over the course of his tenure, 32 Jags made the Sun Belt Commissioner’s List, and 15 were named to the Academic Honor Roll. The team never dropped below a 3.0 GPA, and in three semesters it posted a 3.5 or higher.

“Finally, I want to thank all the coaches and players that I have had the pleasure and privilege to work with these last four years,” Winkworth said. “These ladies will always have a special place in my heart and have shown more support for my family than anyone can ever imagine. I want to wish the girls all the very best for the future both on and off the pitch, I know each and every one of them can attain any goal their heart desires.”