GFA names new girls soccer coach
Published 12:00 am, Friday, August 18, 2017
Freya Coombe left her native homeland to spread her love for soccer here in the United States.
After three-plus years of doing so at the Everton America CT soccer club in Wilton, Coombe now joins the Greens Farms Academy athletic family as its new varsity girls soccer coach.
“I’m really looking forward to working with the coaches and also the players,” Coombe said. “They’re a great group of girls with a lot of talent and I’m very excited to start working with them.”
Coombe was born in Great Britain, in the southeastern part of the country between London and Oxford.
She grew up playing the sport, excelling to the point where she played in college at Staffordshire University during her undergrad years and the Manchester Metropolitan University while she attained her Master’s.
She also played professionally at the Redding Football Club, where she also began her coaching career.
She came to the United States in 2014 to join Everton America, where she currently holds the position of Director of Girls Soccer.
At Everton America, Coombe coached with Paul Hennessey, the previous girls coach at GFA, who resigned his position after last season because he was relocating away from the northeast.
“I worked with Paul for three years and have always closely followed the team,” Coombe said. “I had been to a number of their games so when the opportunity came, it seemed like one I should go for.”
Coombe came highly recommended by her co-worker.
“We are excited to have Freya as the head coach of the girls varsity program this fall,” GFA athletic director Tauni Butterfield said. “With Paul moving, which was bittersweet for GFA, we were looking for someone who could continue to enhance the program through high skill development, balanced with teaching the players accountability and character development.”
Coombe’s life-long soccer resume jumped off the page, Butterfield stated.
“Her vast knowledge of the sport, and coaching many levels is what attracted me to her,” the AD said. “Her positive personality, her management skills, along with her coaching and teaching skills, made her a great fit for the GFA soccer program.”
And because GFA have produced players who went to Everton America, a mutual respect has already been established.
“It’s such a great school with strong leadership, which is fantastic,” Coombe said. “It seemed like a good opportunity to work at a high school again.”
Coombe had coach one year at Wilton High School, leading the Warriors to the Class LL quarterfinals in a rebuilding year.
The ultimate goal for Coombe and the Dragons, though, is to build upon what Hennessey has done and keep rising into the future.
“I just hope we can continue playing the way Paul had them playing, which is a great way,” Coombe said. “He laid a great foundation with the girls and hopefully I can build upon that.”
Greens Farms Academy has won 12 FAA championships since 1986, six of which have come since 2000.
Last season, the Dragons advanced to the Fairchester Athletic Association and New England Class C tournament quarterfinals.