In just two seasons, Somoano has reached the summit of collegiate soccer when he led the Tar Heels to the 2011 NCAA title, becoming just the second rookie head coach in NCAA history to win a national championship.
He owns a 37-6-6 record in two seasons in Chapel Hill, good for a program best .816 winning percentage. Somoano was named the 2011 National Coach of the Year by Soccer America as the Tar Heels posted a 21-2-3 mark en route to the 2011 title.
The Tar Heels became only the second team in Atlantic Coast Conference history to claim the treble in a single year by winning the ACC regular season title, the ACC Tournament crown and the national championship in 2011.
In addition to his national coach of the year honors, the ACC coaches also pegged Somoano the top head man in the ACC for 2011. Somoano joined former Carolina men's coach and current Carolina women's coach, Anson Dorrance, as the second coach to be named the ACC Coach of the Year in their first year on the job.
Several Tar Heels earned national recognition in 2011 under Somoano's watch with Matt Hedges, Enzo Martinez and Billy Schuler earning All-America honors. Another Tar Heel, Ben Speas, was also named the National Player of the Year by Soccer America.
Five Tar Heels earned All-ACC honors in 2011 with Scott Goodwin, Matt Hedges, Enzo Martinez and Billy Schuler being named first team and Kirk Urso joining the second team. Mikey Lopez, Jordan McCrary and Boyd Okwuonu were all named to the ACC All-Freshman Team, while Hedges and Lopez earned Defender of the Year and Freshman of the Year, respectively.
The Tar Heels also excelled in the classroom with Scott Goodwin, Rob Lovejoy and Kirk Urso earning ACC All-Academic Team honors in 2011.
It was going to be a tough act to follow in his second season, but the Heels did well in recording a 16-4-3 mark and came within one match of a fifth-straight College Cup in 2012. UNC ultimately fell 1-0 to eventual national champion Indiana in the quarterfinal round of the NCAA Tournament.
Similar to previous seasons, UNC was honored with a handful of national awards in 2012 with Danny Garcia, Goodwin, Lopez and Okwuonu all earning All-America honors. Additionally, Jonathan Campbell and Garcia, the ACC Freshman of the Year, earned Freshman All-America plaudits.
Six Tar Heels earned All-ACC awards during the 2012 campaign. Garcia joined Lopez as the first Tar Heel duo to be named ACC Freshman of the Year in back-to-back seasons since 1993 and 1994. Additionally, Lopez and Okwuonu were the only underclassmen to be recognized on the All-ACC first team. Second team nods went to Andy Craven, Garcia and Goodwin for a second-straight year. Campbell and Garcia landed on the All-ACC Freshman Team.
Academically, Goodwin was the winner of the Capital One Academic All-America of the Year award for Division I men's soccer. He also headlined the All-ACC Academic Team, earning the Scholar-Athlete of the Year award. Campbell, Lovejoy and Martin Murphy joined Goodwin on the team.
While an assistant at Carolina, Somoano helped recruit six top 10 recruiting classes and watched over one of the most successful periods in school history. The Tar Heels advanced to three consecutive NCAA College Cups, including the 2008 National Championship game, and amassed a 118-52-27 record.
Somoano helped lead the Tar Heels to nine All-America honors and 41 All-Atlantic Coast Conference honors, including the 2003 ACC Rookie of the Year, Jamie Watson. Twelve different Tar Heels were named to the All-ACC Academic Team for their work in the classroom and on the field, including 2010 ACC Men's Soccer Academic Athlete of the Year Kirk Urso.
Somoano also played a key part in developing the Tar Heels into professional soccer players. Since 2003, 24 former players have been selected in the MLS SuperDraft. Included in that group is nine first-round draftees: David Stokes, Dax McCarty, Michael Harrington, Zach Loyd, Jalil Anibaba and Eddie Ababio, Matt Hedges, Enzo Martinez and most recently Mikey Lopez in 2013.
Carolina is the only team nationally to have a first-round selection each of the last four years, and its six first rounder's in the last four years is second most in the country.
Three former Tar Heels who played under Somoano have represented the United States in the past few years as Dax McCarty, Logan Pause and Zach Loyd have all been called upon to represent their country.
College Soccer News named Somoano a Top 20 Assistant Coach six times in his career as well as the NSCAA South Region Assistant Coach of the Year in 2010. In addition to his work with the Tar Heels, Somoano has coached 16-to-18-year old boys with Raleigh's Capital Area Soccer League since 2002. He has guided three different teams within this age group to a total of five-straight state titles and three Disney Soccer Showcase championships. Somoano also served as the United States Youth Soccer Region III Staff Coach in 2004, 2006 and 2007 and was responsible for selecting and coaching ODP state team players. He also served in a similar position in Region I from 1999-2002.
Additionally, Somoano serves as a scout for the U.S. Soccer Development Academy. In 2009, Somoano was the head coach for the U-16 CASL Chelsea Academy, where he led his team to the National Championship week. He was named the 2009 US Soccer U-15/16 Development Academy Southern Conference and National Coach of the Year.
Somoano came to Carolina from Virginia Commonwealth University, where he was an assistant coach for six seasons from 1996-2001. Prior to his stint in Richmond, he was an assistant coach at Eckerd College from 1992-95.
Somoano received a Bachelor of Science in biology (concentration in pre-medicine) from Eckerd College in 1992. He then earned a Master's of Sport Management degree from the University of Richmond in August of 2000. Somoano earned four letters in soccer at Eckerd College and was a two-year team captain.
Somoano is married to the former Martina Nedelkova, and the couple has two daughters and a son: Sofia Kathleen, born May 6, 2006, Gabriela Martina, born Dec. 24, 2007, and Alexander Luis, born April 24, 2011.
|Alma Mater:||Eckerd College, 1992|