Nick Flohre is stepping down as the head coach of the Eastern Kentucky University soccer program due to family reasons, Director of Athletics Stephen Lochmueller announced on Thursday.
“Three years ago, I was fortunate enough to be offered the head coaching position at EKU,” Flohre said. “While I have been given incredible experiences and built lasting relationships during my time here, the distance between my wife and I has put stress on our family. Having to do what is best for my family, it’s time to reconnect with her which will take me away from Richmond. EKU has been a great place to be a part of, and it will always hold a special place in my heart.”
“First and foremost, we wish Nick nothing but the best as he chooses to begin a new chapter in his life,” Lochmueller said. “It’s certainly a bitter-sweet day. We are excited for what lies ahead for Nick and Danielle, but we are sad to be saying goodbye to such a valued member of the EKU family.”
Under Flohre’s leadership, the Colonels have advanced to the OVC semifinals the past three seasons, including consecutive trips to the OVC Championship game in 2016 and 2017.
Flohre arrived at EKU in December of 2015, and he quickly reinvigorated the soccer program. He was named OVC Coach of the Year in 2016 after leading the Colonels to one of the most dramatic turnarounds in the NCAA. Flohre inherited a team that went 4-14 and missed out on the OVC Tournament for the third straight year in 2015. The Colonels were picked in the preseason to finish 10th out of 11 teams in the OVC. However, EKU won a school-record eight straight games early in the season (a winning streak that was the third longest in the country at the time) and carried that momentum the rest of the way, finishing 13-4-0 (8-2 OVC), winning a share of the first OVC regular season title in program history and securing a No. 2 seed in the OVC Tournament. The Colonels fell to SIUE, 1-0, in the OVC title game that year.
EKU set program records for wins (13), conference wins (eight), goals (30) and shutouts (10) in Flohre’s first season.
In 2017, Flohre guided EKU to an 11-5-4 (6-1-3 OVC) record and a second place finish in the OVC regular season. The Colonels were mere minutes from advancing to the NCAA Tournament that season, falling to No. 1 seed Murray State, 1-0, in overtime in a heartbreaking OVC Championship game.
This fall, Flohre and the Colonels earned the program’s first-ever win over neighboring Kentucky in September, before finishing the regular season 8-8-4 (4-4-3 OVC). EKU advanced to the OVC semifinals for the third consecutive season, falling to the No. 1 seed UT Martin, 3-2, on November 2.
“Nick successfully took a struggling program and transformed it into an annual conference championship contender. I couldn’t be more proud of the job Nick has done,” said Lochmueller. “Not only has he built a championship program on the field, he has recruited student-athletes who have been leaders in the classroom and in the community. From top to bottom, he is leaving this program in a much stronger position than it was when he came to EKU. You simply can’t ask for anything more than he has given to Colonel soccer, our department and this university.”
Flohre concludes his tenure as head coach with a record of 32-17-8 (18-7-6 OVC). The 32 wins are the most over a three-year span in EKU soccer history.
The EKU soccer program was also extremely successful in the classroom during Flohre’s tenure. The Colonels posted a 3.75 team GPA during the 2017-18 academic year, the third highest GPA among all Division-I soccer teams in the country.
Earlier this month, junior Erin Torrence, a first-team All-OVC performer and 4.0 student, was named to the prestigious 2018 Google Cloud Academic All-District First Team, as selected by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA).
She is the first player in the history of the EKU soccer program to be named Academic All-District by CoSIDA.
“I want to thank Eastern Kentucky University and the EKU Soccer program for the opportunities they’ve given me over the past three years,” Flohre added. “I’m extremely proud of our student-athletes for the accomplishments they have earned and the direction the program is headed. I wish everyone involved at EKU, from past, current and future players to administration and other athletic programs to the future head soccer coach, nothing but the best!”
A national search for Flohre’s successor will begin immediately.
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Associate Director of EKUSports Communications