UF Grad comes back as assistant soccer coach
By Clowie Flinner
When Sierra Perry, heard the news of an opening coaching position at the University of Findlay she couldn’t resist the opportunity to return home.
“Every other place I have been has not had the sense of family I felt at Findlay,” Perry said.
Perry graduated in 2020 from the University of Findlay. It was there she continued her own athletic career playing the game she is so passionate about. After graduation she went on to become a graduate assistant at Heidelberg University then a full-time assistant at Ohio Northern University. Perry developed a love for coaching thanks to many of her lifetime inspirations.
“My past coaches inspire me; my bosses inspire me and other female coaches in this industry inspire me,” Perry said. “A big reason I wanted to be a coach is because of my coach Jimmy Walker and the athletic staff at Findlay.”
Now, Perry is the new women’s soccer assistant coach at UF and very excited to give back to the community that gave her so much. She says she wants to return the favor and set up the team for success. Perry says life lessons from her own career are helping to shape and build the team into becoming a highly favored and successful team.
“I try to coach with a philosophy that is positive and the viewpoint that sometimes the hardest days are the ones you grow the most,” Perry said. “I take pride in teaching my players how to handle high pressure environments and I believe that the outlook helps them.”
However, Perry isn’t the only one excited about her returning home. Senior, Madison Mlsna, was excited to receive a new coach in what could be her last year of playing soccer at Findlay.
“I was excited to see what they had to bring to the table and how they would be able to help our team achieve our goals,” Mlsna said.
Freshman, Cat Graves, has seen a huge improvement since Perry joined the team. Perry hasn’t only just brought a new coaching philosophy into the team, but also has helped to relate better to the girls.
“They’re both younger, so I feel like they get along with us and they know how we respond well and they’re both very encouraging, which has been nice,” Graves said.
Despite having a new coaching staff, the soccer team is always looking for ways to improve on team weaknesses. With a big incoming class and a whole new coaching staff, the chemistry has been the biggest obstacle they’ve faced.
“When I first came, I thought just like building the chemistry and team bond because there were like five seniors, five juniors, and like ten sophomores and 11 freshmen, something like that, so it was a lot of younger people and I was worried about the chemistry,” Graves said. “But everyone connects really well and we’ve started to figure out how to play with each other.”
The team is 3-2-1 so far and travels to Walsh University Saturday Sep. 17 for a 5 p.m. match up.