NEWMAC Coach of the Year 2019
Brian Kelley is entering his 10th campaign as the head coach of the Engineers and 14th with the program in 2022. He begins the season with a 93-38-30 (.682) overall record in Worcester.
The 2021 season marked the return to play for Kelley’s men’s soccer program after having the 2020 season canceled due to COVID-19. The Engineers compiled a 10-5-3 record before the season came to an end in the NEWMAC Tournament while finishing second in the NCAA DIII Region II rankings. Kelley’s crew registered four postseason All-Conference accolades including Mike Biando and Evan Hallberg being named to the All-NEWMAC second team, Franco Bazzini named to the first team and Filippo Marcantoni earning the NEWMAC Men’s Soccer Rookie of the Year award. Bazzini and Aaron Vaz combined for three NEWMAC Men’s Soccer Offensive Athlete of the Week nods throughout the year on the pitch. Bazzini and Hallberg were named to the United Soccer Coaches Region II first and third team, respectively, as Erik Hererra and Roe Hendrick earned CoSIDA Academic All-District honors.
2019 was a magical year for Kelley's squad as WPI shared the NEWMAC regular season championship, won the program's first NCAA Tournament game since 1976, and led all of Division III (over 400 teams) in fewest goals allowed (0.452). The postseason awards circuit was a busy one as the Engineers dominated the NEWMAC postseason awards (Kelley - Coach of the Year; Jackson Conroy (Athlete of the Year) and Ben Rickson (Defensive Player of the Year) while Rickson became WPI's first All-American since 1992 when he was named First Team by the United Soccer Coaches.
In 2018 the Crimson and Gray were regionally ranked with a solid overall record of 12-3-3 and an undefeated 4-0-3 mark in conference tilts. WPI reached the semifinals again before they were upended 1-0 by the eventful champions. Kelley reached a milestone in October of 2018 when he earned his 100th career coaching victory in a 2-1 overtime win at Wentworth. Riley Doherty headlined the postseason accolades by taking All-New England honors on the field and Academic All-District honors.
Led by two-time United Soccer Coaches All-Region honoree Brendan Nemes, the Engineers shared the 2017 NEWMAC regular season title and went on to claim the 2017 NEWMAC Championship via penalty kicks at Springfield. A week later, the team was upended by No. 6 SUNY Oneonta via PKs in the NCAA Tournament. Paul Beatty was also named All-Region while Derrick Naugler and Riley Doherty earned CoSIDA Academic All-District honors. Connor Hoeckele joined the quartet as All-NEWMAC selections.
In addition to four All-NEWMAC performers, Kurt Naugler claimed his third CoSIDA Academic All-District I nod while Doherty was selected as the NEWMAC Rookie of the Year in 2015. The Engineers claimed two more All-Conference accolades in 2016 and made Kelley a perfect 4-for-4 in having at least one member of the program named to the first team.
The 2014 team reached the NEWMAC finals for the first time in program history and was ranked sixth in the New England region with a 14-5 ledger. Three players drew All-Conference selections last season and Eric Crevoiserat earned a spot on the NSCAA All-Region third team. Additionally, the team ranked seventh in the country in goals against average in 2014.
Kelley helped the Engineers post an 11-5-1 overall record in 2013 as co-head coach with Malcolm MacPherson. Three players drew all-conference recognition, while forward Chris Ciampa was honored as an All-New England performer and Naugler was named a CoSIDA Academic All-District I honoree. Matt Farrell was also feted as the NEWMAC Rookie of the Year.
Prior to his time as head coach, Kelley spent four seasons as an assistant under MacPherson.
Kelley coached both men's and women's soccer at Defiance (OH). Kelley left a legacy at Defiance as he led the Women's team to their first-ever winning season and the men to the conference finals in 2003 and 2004. Kelley was named the Heartland Conference Coach of the Year on the men's side in 2002 and in 2003 was given the honor for his work with the men's and women's teams.
Before venturing to Ohio, Kelley was an assistant on the men's and women's soccer teams at Muhlenberg College, his alma mater.
As a student, Kelley played for Muhlenberg's men's soccer team for four years and was once named a Centennial Conference All-star. Kelley was also co-captain of the team that reached the Division III Final Four in 1995. After graduating, Kelley signed as a professional soccer player for the Reading Rage (Reading, PA) of the United Soccer League. Reading was the “farm” team for the then NY Metro Stars, now known as the NY Red Bulls. Kelley then took his skills abroad as he trained with Shelbourne F.C, (Dublin, Ireland) and played the 1997 and 1999 seasons for Verona F.C.
Kelley is the owner and president of East Coast Soccer, a company that runs camps, clinics, and tournaments. He has also worked as the Director of Coaching and Player Development at the New England Soccer School. While there, Kelley helped the program expand from two teams to fifteen in three years.
Kelley is originally from Needham, MA, and currently resides in Westboro.