Lassen College welcomes new soccer coach

Lassen Community College soccer program had a rough 2019 season as the women’s team was canceled for the season due to injury and sickness, and the men’s ran into stiff competition all season long. But Lassen College is readying itself for next season by hiring Johnny Garvilla as head coach for the men’s and women’s soccer program.

Garvilla has a storied coaching career and experience in both men’s and woman’s coaching. He has been an NCAA division I head and assistant coach, NCAA division II assistant coach and NAIA head coach.

Following his collegiate playing at Winthrop University in South Carolina, he went on to spend two years as an assistant coach at his alma mater. From Winthrop, Garvilla moved on to Francis Marion University, an NCAA division II school where he served for two years as assistant coach for men’s soccer.

Garvialla was given his first head coaching position in both men’s and women’s soccer at Montreat College in 1995. He then moved onto Milligan College where he took over the men’s soccer program that had only two winning seasons in 20 years and a fresh woman’s program.

In his first year with the program, the men’s team went to its first post-season occurrence playing for the Tennessee Valley Athletic Conference Championship. He also helped lead the women’s team to the TVAC playoffs in their inaugural season.

In his five years with the women’s team and four years with the men’s team, they would play in a combined seven TVAC and Appalachian Athletic Conference championships.

While at Milligan the soccer teams and coach Garvilla would earn numerous accolades:

•NAIA Nationally ranked women’s soccer teams in 1999; they were ranked 11th and in 2001 ranked 12th.

•In 1998 and 1999 he earned the TVAC women’s championships as well as TVAC men’s championships in 1999.

•In 2001 Garvilla was a national finalist for coach of the year but was voted coach of the year for Region XII, AAC and TVAC women’s coach of year in 2001.

Following his success at Milligan, Coach Garvilla went on to be head coach of Troy University, an NCAA division I member school. He spent two years at Troy University ahead of promoting to director of athletics at Belhaven University.

In Garvilla’s three years as director, he would spend his last year coaching with the men’s soccer program. Under his guidance the men’s soccer team went 11-6-1, which was the school’s best record in 10 years.

During his career Garvilla has coached three Olympic soccer athletes and two World Cup players. He holds a National Soccer Coaches Association “Advanced National” Coaching Diploma and has earned a United States Soccer Federation “C” license.

Garvilla’s coaching records stands as follows: 161-96-10 overall, 92-38-6 for women’s, and 69-58-4 for men’s.

Coach Garvilla stated, “Both programs are steeped in a rich tradition, and I am confident we can once again compete for GVC championships. More importantly, my ultimate goal is to provide a program that operates with the highest degree of integrity and creates a rewarding environment for student athletes.”