BUZZARDS BAY, Mass – New women's soccer head coach John Sousa was appointed to the position last month and already he has a number of recruits looking to become Buccaneers this Summer and he has rounded out his coaching staff for 2019 and beyond, hiring former Buccaneer women's soccer player Lauren Salem and former Irish professional soccer player Niall O'Donnell.
Lauren Salem, a Westfield, Mass native, attended Massachusetts Maritime Academy and played women's soccer for the Buccaneers from 2010-2014. In four years on the pitch at Clean Harbors Stadium, Salem played in 56 of a possible 57 games, scored 19 goals and had 11 assists. She also scored five career game winning goals, including three in her senior season. In her final year at Maritime, Salem scored nine goals which led the team. She graduated from MMA in 2014 with a Bachelor's Degree in Marine Transportation and shipped out shortly thereafter with the Master Mates and Pilots Union of which she is still a member. Prior to taking the position at her Alma Mater, Salem was a player in the US Olympic Development Program for both the State of Massachusetts and the North East Region.
"I am excited to be back at Mass Maritime, where I spent four years of my life playing soccer and getting my education." Said Coach Salem. "I am looking forward to working with Coach Sousa and developing this program, hopefully making it one of the best in the MASCAC."
Niall O'Donnell, a native of Ireland and married father of four, joins Sousa's staff with a decorated footballing resume, including holding a United States Soccer Federation "A" License. O'Donnell is currently the technical coordinator with Wareham Youth Soccer and will continue in the role while at Maritime. At the collegiate level, Coach O'Donnell was the head men's soccer coach at Umass-Dartmouth from 1997-2000. In 2000 he was named Little East Conference Coach of the Year. Prior to his coaching career, O'Donnell played professionally in Ireland, beginning his career at Athy Town AFC in 1967. After his time at Athy town he played for one of the biggest clubs in Ireland, St. Patricks Athletic in Dublin.
"Getting back in to collegiate coaching is something I have wanted to do for a long time." Said O'Donnell. "Coach Sousa and Massachusetts Maritime have provided that opportunity and I am excited to get started and help the Buccaneers succeed on and off the pitch."
When asked about his assistant coaching hires head coach John Sousa said, "Hiring someone with a Massachusetts Maritime background like Coach Salem has, and someone with the soccer knowledge of Niall O'Donnell is a recipe for success. They both provide me with knowledge I otherwise wouldn't have and have a great feel for the game, especially at this level. I am excited to see what we can do with the team we are going to have and the coaches that will be next to me along the way."