CLEVELAND, Ohio - Sonia Curvelo, who has spent the last five years as the head women's soccer coach at Mississippi Valley State University (MVSU) and is a former member of the Portugal National Team, has accepted the head women's soccer coaching position at Cleveland State University.
Director of Athletics John Parry made the announcement on Thursday morning.
Curvelo is scheduled to begin her duties in January and will become just the second head coach in 10-year history of the program. Dallas Boyer will remain on staff as the assistant coach.
"I am very honored to be the head women's soccer coach at Cleveland State University," Curvelo said. "I want to thank Director of Athletics, Mr. John Parry, and Associate Director of Athletics for Student Affairs, Mrs. Christine Moeller, for this great opportunity. I look forward to working with the student-athletes, support staff and community. I will do my best to help each student-athlete achieve success in the classroom and on the field. The future of CSU women's soccer is exciting as we look forward to building a successful program. I am proud to be part of the Viking family and Cleveland community. I also want to thank my family for their continued support in my career."
"Sonia has the right combination of playing and coaching experience at the national level to lead CSU women's soccer to the top of the Horizon League," Parry said. "I am excited about the future of CSU soccer with Sonia as our coach."
During her time at MVSU, Curvelo advanced to the SWAC (Southwestern Athletic Conference) tournament all five years, leading the squad to the conference title and NCAA tournament bid in 2012 by winning three matches over a four-day stretch. The SWAC Coach of the Year in 2012, Curvelo also led her squad to the conference championship match in 2010 and 2011. She developed 12 players who earned All-SWAC honors, 14 players who were named to the SWAC all-tournament team, as well as the 2012 SWAC tournament MVP.
Curvelo's teams have also had consistent success in the classroom with her 2011-12 squad completing the academic term with a 3.52 grade point average, the highest among the school's 18 programs and tops among women's soccer programs in the SWAC. In 2012-13, the women's soccer team was tops among MVSU sports with a 3.59 GPA. She has produced a National Dean's List Scholar, as well as an MVSU Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year.
Prior to arriving at MVSU, Curvelo served as an associate coach at Fanshawe College in Ontario, a player development coach at the SB9 Soccer Academy in Tampa, Fla., and a coach for the Rochester Rhinos Soccer Academy.
As a student-athlete at MVSU, Curvelo was one of the original members of the program and was instrumental in leading the team to the 2005 conference title and NCAA bid, assisting on the first goal and scoring the game-winner in the conference championship match. Curvelo was named the 2005 SWAC tournament MVP, leading MVSU to its first-ever NCAA tournament appearance.
The Strathroy, Ontario, native made a name for herself internationally, playing for the Portugal National Team that included her first international appearance against Wales in 2008. In addition, Curvelo signed her first professional contract with CF Puebla of the Women's Spanish Super League in Spain. She also played for three teams in the USL W-League.
Curvelo is a member of the National Soccer Coaches Association, the United States Soccer Federation and the Alliance of Women Coaches. A graduate of the NCAA Women's Coaches Academy, Curvelo also served as the SWAC soccer chairperson.
Curvelo earned her Bachelor's of Science in Business Administration in 2007 from MVSU and earned her Master's of Science in Sport Coaching Education in 2013 from Southern Mississippi.