Chris Pfau is entering his first season as Valpo's top assistant coach in 2017. He comes to the Crusaders after spending the last six seasons guiding the University of Houston women’s soccer program. Pfau was also the head women’s coach at Akron (2008-12) and Evansville (2005-06) before taking over at Houston.
“I’ve known Chris for the better part of 25 years,” Avery said. “He’s a longtime friend. He’s been one of my closest coaching confidants. He’s someone I’ve always talked to over the years about soccer, coaching, life and family. When I had the opportunity to bring him on staff, it was something I couldn’t pass up.”
At Houston, Pfau led the Cougars to their first postseason berth since 2010 in his first season. He coached Cami Koski to American Goalkeeper of the Year honors in 2013.
During his tenure at Akron, Pfau took a Zips team that hadn’t reached the MAC Tournament in any of its first eight seasons to the MAC East Division title and three straight MAC Tournaments. His Akron side put together back-to-back undefeated seasons against MAC East Division foes, going 5-0 in 2009 and 4-0-1 in 2010.
“He was my first choice,” Avery said. “I think he’s going to bring a lot of experience and interesting ideas. Our players are going to benefit from having such an experienced soccer person around. He’s a really good coach first and foremost. He’s got a great eye for talent; he’s a great teacher of the game. At the end of the day, our program and players are going to benefit from this.”
Pfau also had success during his time at Evansville, leading the Purple Aces to the 2006 Missouri Valley Conference Finals and the 2007 MVC Tournament. Evansville enjoyed the seventh-best improvement nationally in his first season in 2005.
Pfau’s extensive resume also includes experience as the Director of Coaching for the Junior Irish Soccer Club (2002-03), the women’s head coach at St. Mary’s College (2002-03), the men’s head coach at Mount Mary College (1999-02), an assistant for the Cincinnati River Hawks of the A-League (1997-99) and the head coach of Cincinnati United Soccer Club (1995-99).
Before his coaching tenure began, Pfau was a highly successful player at Old Dominion. He was a team captain, four-year starter and all-region honoree during his collegiate playing days, which spanned from 1985-89. Pfau went on to enjoy a lengthy professional playing career in the APSL, WPSL and WSL from 1989-99.