KAMLOOPS — When the Thompson Rivers University WolfPack women’s soccer team opens training camp in August, they will have a new person at the helm.
Thompson Rivers University Athletics and Recreation Director Curtis Atkinson has announced that Kelly Shantz has resigned from the position of head coach effective immediately.
Shantz was the second head coach of the women’s soccer program since it entered U SPORTS and Canada West. He was hired April 6, 2016 replacing Tom McManus.
A native of Kamloops, Shantz was the third head coach since the school switched to Thompson Rivers University in 2005. He had a record of 7-30-4 in his three years at the helm of the program. The WolfPack had a record of 3-9-2 this past season.
Shantz issued this statement, “I always use the November and December period to reflect on our season and my experiences, its ups and downs and progress. I have spoken with friends and family, listened to the players evaluations and had discussions with the TRU Athletic Department about what we have accomplished, where we are lacking and what the future vision of the program looks like. With all this in mind I have made the very difficult decision to resign as Head Coach – Women’s Soccer.”
He went on to say, “Ever since I took this wonderful opportunity a little over two years and three seasons ago, I have been asked frequently how long I planned to do it. My answer is always the same. As long as I felt we were making real progress and that I was having a significant impact on the soccer program and university lives of the student athletes, I would stay. As long as I found the time and travel commitments rewarding and in harmony with the needs of my amazing, supportive family, I would stay. If not, I would get out of the way and let fresh eyes, fresh ideas and fresh energy take over. That time is now.”
“Kelly has been a long-time contributor to our athletic program and I would like to thank him for his many years of service as a volunteer, coach, and valuable member of the Sports Task Force” said Director of Athletics and Recreation, Curtis Atkinson. “Kelly has been a passionate advocate of our athletic program, university, and city and I wish him the very best as he moves on to other opportunities.”
Shantz had an association with the Cariboo College/University College of the Cariboo/TRU program since 1979-80 when he was a student/athlete in the men’s soccer and basketball programs. He then joined the UCC now TRU Sports Task force and was instrumental in running the Mike Bartram Memorial Golf Tournament for over 17 years.
He had previously been an assistant coach under Eric Schweizer with UCC and Thompson Rivers, coached in the Kamloops Youth Soccer Association and ran the Kamloops Heat women’s program in the Pacific Coast Soccer League.
Shantz added, “I want to thank my players and wish them nothing but the best as they pursue their academic and athletic dreams. I want to thank the wonderful soccer alumni I have known over the last 20 years as student-athletes and now valuable friends. I thank the TRU athletic department, coaches and staff I have known for so many years for their support and energy. I want to thank my assistant coaches for their passionate, dedicated and time-consuming volunteer commitment year-in and year-out. I want to thank Ken Olynyk, retired Athletic Director who hired me in April of 2016.”
The search for Shantz’s replacement will begin immediately.
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