Mike Friesen
Mike  Friesen

Position:
Head Coach

Alma Mater:
Sonoma State (1996)

Season:
12th (15th Overall at SDSU)

04/04/2018

Mike Friesen Signs 5-Year Contract Extension

W. Soccer's Friesen signs 5-year extension

03/28/2018

SDSU Women’s Soccer Announces 2018 Signing Class

W. Soccer announces 2018 signing class

01/23/2018

SDSU Women’s Soccer Adds Florence Laroche

Women’s Soccer adds Florence Laroche

11/07/2017

SDSU Women's Soccer Press Conference Quotes

WSOC press conference quotes

11/07/2017

W. Soccer Ready for NCAA First Round and UCLA

W. Soccer ready for NCAAs and UCLA

Bio entering 2018 season.

Mike Friesen, the winningest head coach in program history, enters his 12th season at San Diego State. Friesen, who spent three years as an assistant on the SDSU coaching staff, including two as associate head coach, will be at the helm for the foreseeable future after signing a five-year contract extension in April 2018, keeping him on The Mesa through the 2022 campaign.

Friesen has been the architect of the most successful run in SDSU women’s soccer history. In 11 seasons, he has guided the Aztecs to nine Mountain West championships (five tournament, four regular season) and five NCAA tournament appearances. Along the way, he became San Diego State’s all-time leader in victories (134; 134-72-29) and winning percentage (.632), and is currently the only Aztec head coach with a career winning percentage above .600. At the conference level, Friesen owns the most MW wins of any coach in Mountain West history (68; 68-17-10) and is the league’s active leader in career victories.

In the summer of 2017, Friesen was listed among the nation’s top Division I women’s soccer head coaches by All White Kit’s CoachRank 2017. Friesen checked in at No. 14 out of 236 head coaches on the list. All White Kit’s CoachRank is a data-driven, objective system of measuring coach performance over a long period of time (3+ years or more at one school). The ranking includes multiple factors such as overall performance, conference tournament effort and NCAA tournament results. Data used for the ranking goes as far back as 2009.

Under Friesen’s guidance, the program, which focuses on the process, has made strides into becoming a rising power not only in the West, but nationally. Leading up to and during the 2012 campaign, a major focus for the team was the “process” in becoming great and being a champion. Friesen and his staff’s philosophy proved fruitful for the squad as they quickly became one of the top teams in country.

The 2012 campaign was a direct result of the “process” and just a small step in the right direction as SDSU enjoyed the finest season in school history after the Aztecs captured the Mountain West regular-season and tournament titles, advanced to the Sweet 16 for the first-time ever, shared the best record nationally at 21-2-1, and finished the year ranked seventh nationally after rising to as high as third.

Team success breeds individual awards and 2012 was no exception. Friesen helped senior Megan Jurado become San Diego State’s first All-American since 1998, and that was after the forward was named MW Offensive Player of the Year. Haley Palmer, meanwhile, was the MW Defensive Player of the Year, and Friesen garnered conference coach-of-the-year honors. Palmer would go on to earn the award in 2013, as well.

From 2013-14, SDSU dominated the Mountain West, winning both the regular-season and tournament crowns. Its three-year sweep of the titles made them just the third MW team to accomplish the feat in league history.

In 2015, the winning continued as SDSU compiled a 15-4-1 record and ended the season on 12-game unbeaten streak, which included 11 straight wins, en route to the MW regular-season title. The Aztecs made history with their fourth straight outright regular-season crown, becoming the first school in the 17-year history of the MW to accomplish the feat.

A season later, San Diego State stumbled out of the gate, but closed its schedule with a 10-3-4 effort, which helped land the Aztecs in the Mountain West title game for a fifth straight year. SDSU’s sixth consecutive 10-win season gave the program 84 wins, which were the most over any six-year stretch in school history.

The 2017 club played one of the toughest non-conference schedules in recent memory, but rebounded down the stretch, winning four consecutive games to earn a No. 2 seed in the MW Championship where it posted a pair of shutouts en route to the title. As a result, SDSU returned to the NCAA tournament for the first time since 2014.

Friesen, who was named head coach in 2007, worked for two seasons to establish a culture that ultimately produced a 2009 Mountain West tournament crown. The league championship was the school’s first since 1999, and SDSU posted its first NCAA tournament win since 1998. Friesen’s Aztecs went on a 16-game unbeaten run, including winning their final eight to propel them into the second round of the 2009 NCAA tourney. During its magical run, SDSU went unbeaten in Mountain West play (5-0-2) for the first time in school history and won the school’s first MW tournament title. Friesen ultimately earned his first MW Coach-of-the-Year Award for helping SDSU become the sixth-most improved team in NCAA Division I and post the second-best win improvement nationally (+9).

Eight- and 10-win campaigns followed the 2009 squad before SDSU’s current run of success that has featured 86 victories over the last six seasons (14.3 wins per year).

Under Friesen’s watch, San Diego State has had one All-American, 18 all-region performers, two MW Offensive Players of the Year, four MW Defensive Players of the Year, three MW Freshmen of the Year and 54 all-MW selections. SDSU student-athletes have also excelled in the classroom as well, with 80 earning all-academic honors from the Mountain West.

Prior to leading the program, Friesen was an assistant coach under former head coach Dr. Mike Giuliano. In their first season in 2004, SDSU posted 12 shutouts, the second most in school history, and allowed just 18 goals in 21 games, the program’s fewest since the 1990 squad gave up 12 goals in 13 games. The effort culminated in the Aztecs’ first appearance in the MW championship game since 1999.

Prior to coming to San Diego State, Friesen spent five years working with the UC Santa Barbara women’s program. His responsibilities with the Gauchos included coaching the team’s offense, recruiting, community outreach and academics.

Upon arriving in Santa Barbara, Friesen helped turn the Gaucho program around, going from a 7-29-2 mark and scoring just 27 goals the two seasons prior to his arrival, to a 24-11-6 mark in 2002-03, tallying 105 scores. Friesen also was integral in signing and developing three straight Big West Conference offensive players of the year.

As a student-athlete, Friesen was an offensive standout at Point Loma Nazarene (1988-89) and Sonoma State (1993-94). He played two years for the Sea Lions before transferring to SSU, where he was a member of an NCAA Division II quarterfinalist squad in 1993. Friesen was also the second-leading scorer in the Northern California Athletic Conference as a senior.

Friesen completed his degree in kinesiology with an emphasis in biomechanics in 1996, before continuing his soccer playing career with the North Bay Breakers of the USISL. For the next several seasons, he played for Juventus in the California Premier Soccer Alliance before signing with the Greek Americans Soccer Club, based in San Francisco, which won two U.S. Open Cup championships in the 1990s.

Friesen and his wife Jamie, who was a former basketball letterwinner at UCLA, have a son, Cole Jamey (15), and a daughter, Emily Mychael (12).

FriesenFamily

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