Jason Nichols will be returning to the pitch as the head women’s soccer coach. Nichols left the program after the 2013 season, stepping away to become full-time director of athletics at HLGU.
Nichols shared, “I would first like to thank Dr. Allen and Dr. Carty for entrusting me with this opportunity to once again to use the platform of coaching to invest in students’ lives. I’m excited to embrace the task of taking the women’s soccer program into a strong future. Christ-centered excellence is at the heart of the mission of HLGU and that is what we will strive for as a program. My priorities will be creating and maintaining a team culture that reflects the ideals of HLGU, which will include establishing a clear vision and setting goals for the upcoming season, and a commitment to recruiting for 2020 and beyond.”
Between 2001 and 2013 Nichols had a combined record of 104-127-16, making him the winningest coach in the 21-year history of the program. The most productive season for Nichols came in 2011 when the team went 12-9 garnishing the accomplishments of American Midwest Conference (AMC) Co-Champions, AMC Tournament Champions, and NAIA National Tournament Qualifiers. He was selected as the AMC Coach of the Year in 2010 and 2011. The lady Trojans also received the AMC Fair Play and Sportsmanship team award in 2003, 2004, 2009, 2010, and 2011. Nichols coached two Honorable-Mention All-Americans, 21 All-AMC Selections, two AMC Freshmen of the Year, and one AMC Player of the Year.
Nichols arrived at HLGU in 1998 as an assistant coach to help launch the men’s and women’s soccer programs under Coach David Erskine, current men’s soccer coach and longest-serving coach at HLGU. In 1999, in just its second year of existence, Nichols helped the lady Trojans qualify for the NCCAA national tournament which saw the team finish with a record of 19-5-1. In 2001, Nichols took over as the head coach of the women’s team. Since the program’s inception, Nichols will be the program’s fourth head coach.
Nichols excelled as a player throughout college, finishing his last two seasons at NAIA Westmar University in LeMars, Iowa, helping the team advance to the 1996 NAIA National Tournament. Nichols was named First-Team All-Region and Honorable Mention All-American as a senior. After college, Nichols played one season with the Sioux City Breeze, a semi-pro USISL contender.
Nichols holds the United Soccer Coaches following coaching certifications: National, Advanced National, Level 2 Goalkeeping, and Premier Diploma. Nichols earned his Master’s degree in Education with an emphasis in Athletic Administration in 2008.
Nichols is married to Chrystal and they reside in Hannibal with their five children.