Coach Bimbi on Importance of Camps: “Camps are so big in the recruiting process, not only do we as coaches get to meet and work with the players, but they get to see our beautiful campus, learn our coaching style and get to meet our players.”
Barry Bimbi enters his fourth year as the women's soccer head coach at Loyola University Chicago, and has the Ramblers poised to become a contending team as they enter the Missouri Valley Conference.
In his first season at Loyola in 2011, Bimbi coached the Ramblers to a 6-10-3 overall record and helped mold Jessie Hubly into a Second Team All-Horizon League selection, while Valerie Gonyo and Moriah Schwarz were chosen to the All-Newcomer Team. Last year, Bimbi's squad also excelled in the classroom, posting a cumulative 3.46 grade-point average in the fall and 3.58 mark in the spring. Bimbi also stresses the importance of giving back to the Loyola and surrounding community and last year, the program earned the Horizon League Community Outreach Award.
Under Bimbi's tutelage last season, Loyola posted an 8-9-3 record and advanced to the semifinals of the Horizon League tournament. Hubly wrapped up her Loyola career by being named a First Team All-Horizon League selection, while Gonyo was joined on the second team by senior Chelsie Stokes. Freshman Mariah Vichich went on to be named to the Horizon League All-Newcomer Team. Loyola's success in the classroom continued as well. The team ranked 20th out of 323 Division I women's soccer programs in the country, collecting a 3.52 grade point average en route to being recognized by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) with the College Team Academic Award.
A native of Pittsburgh, Pa., Bimbi spent four seasons (2007-2010) as an assistant women's soccer coach at the University of Pittsburgh, where he served as the program's recruiting coordinator and was in charge of player development. In each of his last seasons there, the Panthers developed an All-Big East Rookie Team player, marking the only two occasions in program history that accomplishment has occurred.
In 2009, Pitt finished with an 8-5-5 overall record during a breakthrough season in which the Panthers received their first-ever national ranking by Soccer America, checking in at No. 25 in September. Bimbi helped the team earn victories over nationally ranked teams such as Ohio State and Connecticut as well as earning ties against Notre Dame, which eventually reached the NCAA Final Four.
Prior to his time at Pittsburgh, Bimbi served as an assistant coach on the men's soccer staff at Marquette University and in 2002, helped the Golden Eagles to a 10-8-1 ledger. During his four-year stay at Marquette, Bimbi mentored 10 total All-Conference USA selections and helped recruit a pair of National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) High School All-Americans. While at Marquette, he served as the program's recruiting coordinator, oversaw player development and coordinated academic activities.
Bimbi began his coaching career at his alma mater, spending six seasons at Saint Francis (Pa.), as an assistant on the men's staff. There, he helped lead the Red Flash to the program's first-ever back-to-back winning records in Northeast Conference play and aided in the recruitment of four academic All-Americans.
Bimbi has also coached several Olympic Development teams and earned his USSF "A" license in 2005.
A 1994 graduate of Saint Francis (Pa.), Bimbi earned four All-Northeast Conference honors as a player, including first team recognition as a junior. He led the conference in scoring as a freshman and was a three-time team captain. In February, 2011 Bimbi was inducted into the Saint Francis (Pa.) Athletics Hall of Fame.
Bimbi and his wife, Melissa, are the proud parents of a son, Amedeo, and daughter, Lena.
Kirsten Lawrence is in her fourth season as an assistant at Loyola University Chicago. Lawrence is no stranger to fourth-year Loyola head coach Barry Bimbi since both individuals served as assistant coaches on the Pittsburgh staff together from 2007-2010. The Aberdeen, Scotland native helped the Panthers to their first-ever Top 25 ranking during the 2009 campaign.
At Pittsburgh, Lawrence's work was instrumental in the 2009 squad posting the first-ever winning season in program history as the Panthers finished with an 8-5-5 overall record and established a school record with 10 shutouts. During her three seasons on the Pitt staff, Lawrence helped produce five All-Big East Conference honorees and the 2009 squad was the 14th-most improved NCAA Division I team in the country.
Prior to her three-year stay at Pittsburgh, Lawrence was an assistant coach at Campbell University from 2006-08. In two seasons coaching soccer at Campbell, a total of 21 players earned Atlantic Sun Conference All-Academic honors. During the 2005-06 season, she filled the role of graduate assistant swimming coach at Campbell.
Lawrence, who was a member of the Scottish U19 team in 2001 and 2002, holds a USSF National "B" Coaching License, a NSCAA Advanced National Diploma, a NSCAA State Goalkeeping Diploma and a Scottish Football Association Early Touches coaching license.
A 2004 graduate of the University of Aberdeen in Scotland, Lawrence also owns a master's degree from Campbell.
Tom Paparounis is in his fourth season as an assistant coach for the Loyola University Chicago women's soccer program. He works with the goalkeepers.
An accomplished goalkeepers coach, Paparounis also serves as a coach for United Soccer Academy Chicago and the Hawks Soccer Club. During the 2010 season, he was an assistant coach at Concordia University in River Forest, Ill., and he has also honed his craft as a goalkeeping coach for North Texas Olympic Development Program and at KeeperZone, Inc., in Dallas.
Paparounis graduated from Salisbury University in 2003 after a successful playing career where he was a First Team All-Capital Athletic Conference selection in 2001 and helped the Sea Gulls to three conference championships, a pair of NCAA Tournament appearances and a staggering 64-13-4 (.814) record during his four-year career.
Following his collegiate playing career, Paparounis played for the Carolina Dynamo in Division 2 of the USL in 2003, then spent three seasons with the Dallas-Fort Worth Tornados in USL-PDL.
He holds a United States Soccer Federation (USSF) National "D" Coaching License and a National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) Goalkeeper Level 1 and 2 License.