Northern State Director of Athletics, Josh Moon, announced this afternoon the hiring of Ryszard (pronounced RI-SHARD) Gorski, the second head women's soccer coach in program history. Gorski takes helm of the Wolves after two seasons as the assistant coach at Bemidji State and 11 years coaching collegiately.
"We are very excited to welcome Ryszard and his wife Betsy to the Wolves family," explained Moon. "Ryszard has a proven track record of success and has helped take the Bemidji State program to new heights over the past two years."
"I'd like to thank President Dr. Timothy Downs, Josh Moon, and Zach Flakus for this incredible opportunity," noted Gorski. "Their collective leadership and vision for the student-athlete experience perfectly aligns with my own. There is a buzz surrounding Northern State and the direction of the athletics department, and my family and I cannot wait to be a part of it. Anyone can see the exciting direction of NSU Athletics, the soccer program, and the surrounding campus and community."
In his two seasons at BSU, the Beavers proved to be an emerging program in the NSIC, finishing second in 2017 and winning the league championship this past season. Bemidji State made back-to-back NCAA Tournament appearances and compiled a 33-2-6 record. As the primary goalkeepers coach, Gorski worked with 2017 NSIC Goalkeeper of the Year, Catherine Arneson and 2018 Goalkeeper of the Year Anna Fobbe. Fobbe earned USC All-Region second team honors, D2CCA All-Region honors, and was named the Google Cloud Academic All-American® of the Year.
Gorski added, "For me to be able to come into an environment, to come into a setting with such tremendous vision and determination, to lead the soccer program into the future as we build a culture of excellence, is an opportunity I could not pass on. We are going to have a program that is built around student-athlete success on and off the field."
Prior to his time in Bemidji, Gorski was the Director of Goalkeeping at the Valparaiso Soccer Club in Phoenix, Ariz. and the head soccer coach at South Mountain Community College, where he oversaw all aspects of the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) program for the 2015 and 2016 seasons.
"Coach Gorski is a great hire," noted Deputy Director of Athletics, Zach Flakus. "He has a strong soccer background and came highly recommended. NSU has so much momentum right now, both athletically and academically. We had over 60 applicants for the position and the new soccer facility, residence halls, science building and future regional sports complex show the investment the community has in NSU. It has a huge impact on people looking at opportunities on campus and in Aberdeen. We look forward to getting Coach Gorski on staff and working with Wolves Soccer."
Gorski spent 2014 at NCAA Division I Hofstra University, as an assistant coach working primarily with the goalkeepers for the men's soccer program. He led goalkeeper training and development, oversaw academic and social enrichment of all their student-athletes, and was the director of the Hofstra College ID Summer Camp.
"I would also like to thank Tracy Dill and the entire athletics department at Bemidji State University," described Gorski. "My wife and I will always be thankful for the support that was provided for us while in Bemidji as Coach Stone and I built Beavers soccer into a championship program. I truly wish the team and the department all the success in the future."
From 2008-11, Gorski also worked as an assistant coach/goalkeeper coach with the women's and men's soccer programs at NCAA Division I Fordham University. His efforts led to Fordham goalkeeper, Ryan Meara, being drafted 31st overall in the 2012 MLS Draft by the New York Redbulls. The 2009 Fordham Women's Soccer team was recognized by the NCAA for a successful Academic Progress Rate and qualified for the Atlantic-10 Playoffs, in two-of-three seasons.
Gorski started his collegiate coaching career at NCAA Division II Saint Leo University in 2006 as an assistant coach for the men's program. In his two seasons, the Lions qualified for the Sunshine State Conference Tournament each season.
"We were looking for a leader who had a clear plan to take our program to the next level and we have found that with Ryszard," Moon added. "He brings a very diverse background - coaching at multiple levels throughout the country, playing at the Division I level and professionally, and has developed a tremendous network that will provide an immediate positive impact on Northern State soccer."
The Aberdeen, Scotland native also has a significant club soccer background, serving as the Director of Goalkeeping at Albertson Soccer Club in Long Island, N.Y. (2015-16), at Sereno Soccer Club in Phoenix, Ariz. (2011-14), and Central Pasco United Soccer Club in Land O'Lakes, Fla. (2006-08).
Gorski played collegiately at NCAA Division I Long Island University-Brooklyn, where he posted a 29-18-11 career record with 22 shutouts and a 0.87 goals-against-average as a 3-year starter. He was an All-Northeast Conference (NEC) first team selection and was named to the All-New York Region Team by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA). Selected as a captain for his senior season, Gorski led the Blackbirds to the NEC Championship and the NCAA Tournament for the first time in 20 years. He established and still holds the school record shutout streak of 621 minutes.
Following his collegiate playing career, Gorski played professionally for Huntly FC in the Scottish Highland League. He also spent time playing in the USL-Player Development League, with Cascade Surge, DFW Tornados, Cocoa Expos, Palm Beach Pumas, Brooklyn Knights, and New Jersey Rangers. He was selected to play for the Great Britain University team in the World University Games in both Turkey (2005) and Serbia (2009).
Gorski is a 2005 graduate of LIU-Brooklyn with a bachelor's degree in Business Management. He went on to receive his Masters of Business Administration from Saint Leo University in 2008, as well as an associate's degree from Scottsdale Community College in sports nutrition and personal training in 2013.
Gorski holds a United States Soccer (USSF) 'B' license, a NSCAA Advanced National Goalkeeping Diploma and a NSCAA National Diploma.
Ryszard and his wife, Betsy are expecting their first child in the spring.