March 13, 2013
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -
Indiana women's soccer head coach Amy Berbary announced the addition of two assistant coaches to her staff today (March 13), Sergio Gonzalez and Benji Walton. Both Gonzalez and Walton have previous ties to Berbary. Gonzalez was an assistant at Dayton alongside Berbary while Walton was a volunteer assistant coach during Berbary's senior year at Georgia.
"I am thrilled to be able to add such loyal and hard-working coaches like Sergio and Benji to my staff," said Berbary. "The outstanding experience that they bring to the table, coupled with their desire to do whatever it takes to get Indiana Women's Soccer to the top of the Big Ten, are what set them apart to me. They are committed to Indiana and share my belief that we can do some special things with this program moving forward."
Gonzalez comes to Bloomington after spending the previous two seasons as the head coach at New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT). The Highlanders, who have competed at the NCAA Division I level since 2007, had 20 players named to Great West Conference All-Academic team and the team received the NSCAA Team Academic Award. Also, three players were named all-conference by College Sports Madness and they set a school record for most shutouts in a season and highest RPI as well.
"I am extremely honored and excited to have the opportunity to be part of such a tremendous university," said Gonzalez. "I'm equally excited to have the opportunity to work with Amy and Benji. Amy's vision for Indiana University's Women's soccer program goes exactly with my thoughts and values and I look forward to being part of this new era of Indiana University Women's Soccer."
Prior to his time at NJIT, Gonzalez spent five seasons at the University of Dayton and helped the Flyers to Atlantic 10 Conference titles in his final two seasons. The team also advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament in 2009 and 2010 and posted an overall record of 71-21-15 during his tenure. He coached or recruited three Atlantic 10 Defensive Players of the Year, two A-10 Offensive Players of the year, one A-10 Rookie of the Year and one A-10 Midfielder of the Year. In 2009, he helped Mandi Bäck garner UD's first-ever NSCAA First Team All-American honors and in 2010 saw Colleen Williams receive NSCAA Second-Team All-American accolades.
"Sergio has a phenomenal eye for talent and is tireless on the recruiting trail so I could not ask for a better recruiting coordinator," said Berbary about Gonzalez. "We worked together as assistant coaches at Dayton and he proved to be one of the best goalkeeper coaches I have ever been around. There is no doubt in my mind that he will take our goalkeeping, as well as our defense, to the next level."
He was also an assistant coach at Slippery Rock University from 2000-2006 and won a pair of conference titles there. The team also advanced to the Round of 16 in the NCAA Division II Tournament in 2001 and featured a NSCAA First Team All-American. His coaching experience also extends to the youth level, where he has been involved with the Ohio South Youth Soccer Association as the Head ODP Goalkeeper coach as well as being part of the goalkeeping staff for the U.S. Youth Soccer Region II Girls ODP Program. His coaching experience also includes being a director for former United States Women's National Team, Olympic gold medal and World Cup-winning coach Tony DiCicco's Soccer Plus Goalkeeper Camp since 2001. He is also is a member of the NSCAA National Goalkeeping Academy.
While earning his Bachelor's Degree in Criminal Justice from Salve Regina University in Rhode Island, he was a four-year starter and three-time captain and holds all season and career goalkeeping records. Gonzalez went on to pick up a Master's Degree Student Personnel from Slippery Rock University in 2003 while serving as an assistant coach.
Walton comes to the IU staff from Birmingham-Southern College in Alabama, where he has been the head coach for the last six seasons. During his tenure, he has led the program through the transition from NCAA Division I to NCAA Division III. During his tenure, he has posted a record of 69-38-5, becoming the all-time leader in wins at BSC, and won at least 10 games in each season. The 2012 season saw BSC capture the Southern Collegiate Athletic Association (SCAC) regular season co-championship.
"It's an honor to become a member of an athletic department with such great tradition as Indiana University and to compete in a tough conference like the Big Ten," Walton said. "I am grateful for my time at Birmingham-Southern College and the support I received, both from my players and the great people on that campus. Now, I'm eager to get to Bloomington, see what this group of ladies is all about and work with a staff that is dedicated to bringing Indiana Women's Soccer back into contention in the Big Ten."
He has coached or recruited four NSCAA All-Region players and five NSCAA Scholar All-Region players, including two that went on to be named NSCAA Scholar All-Americans.
"During my senior year at Georgia, Benji joined the staff there as a volunteer assistant coach and I was able to see what a first-rate coach he was going to be," said Berbary about Walton. "He knows the game inside and out and is able to draw the most out of players during training sessions. He has recruited high-level players everywhere he has been and I know that will only continue here at Indiana."
Before his time at BSC, Walton was the head coach at Limestone College for four seasons where he turned the program around at the Division II level. After posting a total of 11 wins his first two seasons, he went 17-16-5 over his last two years and had a pair of fifth place finishes in the Carolinas-Virginia Athletic Conference.
A native of Lawrenceville, Ga., Walton also a volunteer assistant coach at the University of Georgia for three seasons (2002-03) while earning a Master's Degree in Education with a focus on Sports Administration.
His playing career at Reinhardt College (1997-2001) saw him lead the team to the NJCAA National Championship game as sophomore, with a 21-1-1 record. His senior year he was second team all-conference and was named NCCAA All-America Honorable Mention. He earned his Bachelor's Degree from Reinhardt College in Business Administration.