Friesen records milestone with 150th win

San Diego State women’s soccer head coach becomes winningest coach in Mountain West Conference history.

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Friesen records milestone with 150th win

Aztecs women’s soccer head coach Mike Friesen instructs his players during a game at the SDSU Sports Deck.

Aztecs women’s soccer head coach Mike Friesen instructs his players during a game at the SDSU Sports Deck.

Courtesy of Derrick Tuskan, SDSU Athletics

Aztecs women’s soccer head coach Mike Friesen instructs his players during a game at the SDSU Sports Deck.

Courtesy of Derrick Tuskan, SDSU Athletics

Courtesy of Derrick Tuskan, SDSU Athletics

Aztecs women’s soccer head coach Mike Friesen instructs his players during a game at the SDSU Sports Deck.

by Reese Savoie, Staff Writer

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They say 13 is an unlucky number.

But this is not the case for San Diego State women’s soccer head coach Mike Friesen, who just ended his 13th season as the winningest head coach in Mountain West Conference history.

With the Aztecs’ 3-2 win over Fresno State on Nov. 7, Friesen made program history by notching his 150th victory.

Friesen said this milestone was the result of years of teamwork, community and growth.

“It’s really a reflection of the years that I’ve been able to be in the program,” he said. “The fun part for me has been to think about all the people who have contributed to all those wins.”

Over his years at the Mesa, Friesen has realized that there is more to coaching than just winning games. He wants to set his players up for success both on and off the field.

“For me, it’s always been about creating a program that’s gonna help (the players) be successful in life for whatever they want to do,” Friesen said. “My goal has always been to push them to get to their absolute best.”

Friesen’s coaching philosophy recognizes what his players gain on the field is something that can be taken with them well beyond their college years.

Seeing both the athletic and personal growth of his players is something Friesen has found to be gratifying throughout his career.

“The transformation of young girls coming through as recruits, at 15 and 16 years old, to becoming these high-powered women that have all these things going on in their lives. That’s really fun to see,” he said. 

Player development isn’t the only thing that Friesen has enjoyed over the past 13 seasons.

He also said that his own growth has been something he takes pride in.

“It’s really fun to look at the progression of myself,” he said. “It’s definitely been a progression of learning over a long period of time through a lot of different people.”

As far as the upcoming seasons, Friesen has a lot to look forward to. Much like his accomplishments, his plans for the team are monumental.

“My goal for the program is to win a national championship at some point and I’ve been saying that since I started,” he said. “That is an ultimate goal for our program.”

Friesen understands that ambitions this high don’t come without a little skepticism, no matter how impressive one’s track record may be.

However, the doubt from the outside is a large part of what makes this particular challenge so appealing to him.

“One of the things I love about coaching here is that a lot of people would say that that’s not possible,” he said. “I love that challenge of other people on the outside saying we can’t do something because I thrive in that environment.”

Amber Salas and Luis Lopez contributed to the reporting of this story.

Reese Savoie is a junior majoring in media studies. Follow her on Twitter @reesesavoie.

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