Trinity Western Spartans coach Graham Roxburgh gives instruction to Danae Derksen during their team’s 5-0 victory over Saskatchewan Huskies on Saturday at TWU’s Chase Office Field. The win was the 200th U Sports victory of Roxburgh’s coaching career.                                 Scott Stewart TWU Athletics

Trinity Western Spartans coach Graham Roxburgh gives instruction to Danae Derksen during their team’s 5-0 victory over Saskatchewan Huskies on Saturday at TWU’s Chase Office Field. The win was the 200th U Sports victory of Roxburgh’s coaching career. Scott Stewart TWU Athletics

Milestone victory for Spartans’ Roxburgh

Longtime Trinity Western coach has won 200 regular season and playoff games in long and illustrious career

When Graham Roxburgh began as the head coach of the Trinity Western Spartans women’s soccer program in 1999, he didn’t envision still being in Langley 18 years later.

But here he is, now one of the most decorated coaches among the ranks of Canadian women’s university soccer.

The goal at the start was to establish a program which attracted not only the best players, but the best student-athletes.

“Can we be successful on the field and even more successful impacting lives and future leaders so that our program has a legacy,” Roxburgh explained.

“And I think working with students at this age gives me the opportunity to help shape some of the future leaders and impact people who are going to go on and play important roles in society.”

Over the weekend, Roxburgh guided the Spartans to a pair of 5-0 victories and he has now won 200 U Sports (formerly CIS) games.

And as has always been the case when he has won a coach of the year award — an award he has won four times at the Canada West level — the 46-year-old was quick to deflect credit.

“It is certainly a program milestone, not just my milestone,” he said. “But it has been a privilege to lead the program.”

Two years after Roxburgh was hired by former director of athletics Murray Hall, the Spartans made the jump from competing in the college ranks to Canada West and the university ranks in 2001.

The Spartans quickly showed they belonged, making the Canada West final that first year.

Three years later, they captured the first of five Gladys Bean Memorial trophies as national champions, adding trophies in 2008, 2009, 2013 and 2014. They also won silver in 2015 and 2016.

Roxburgh-led teams have also won six Canada West gold, five silver and a bronze medal.

He is also the longest tenured of any of the Trinity Western coaches.

“(Two hundred victories) is a really neat milestone to achieve because it shows our program over the years, we have been consistently among the best,” Roxburgh said. “And hopefully I get to do it for a lot more years to come.”

“We have obviously achieved some wonderful things as a team, but really the achievement is more in the relationships and some of the great memories, some of the great people I have had the pleasure in coaching or coaching with,” he added. “And I have learned the value is in people, not trophies.”


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