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Instant Peay Play: APSU’s Kelley Guth has been a constant in Governors 15-year soccer history

Instant Peay Play - APSU SportsClarksville, TN – Austin Peay State University’s women’s soccer team celebrated the program’s 15-year anniversary this past weekend, including capping things with a 2-0 victory over Alabama A&M at Morgan Brothers Soccer Field.

But while players have come and gone over the past decade and a half, the one continual over the years has been head coach Kelley Guth – the only head coach the Govs have ever had in their history.

APSU Lady Govs Soccer Coach Kelley Guth
APSU Lady Govs Soccer Coach Kelley Guth

“The time has gone by quickly,” Guth said. “I think the most interesting thing is see all of the alumni (soccer players) this weekend and just kind of reminded me of how old I am getting, or how young I was when I first got here.

“It’s been a great experience with its ups and downs, but it’s been a great road so far and we hope to continue to get better.”

Guth came to Austin Peay after spending two years as an assistant coach at Southeast Missouri during the 2000 and 2001 season charged with starting a program from the ground up; while also learning all the ins and outs of being a head coach.

“It was certainly a challenge and something I wasn’t as prepared for as I thought when I first got here,” Guth said. “There were a lot of different small things with resources and the challenges with recruiting, budgets and things like that, that as a young coach I wasn’t really prepared for that.

“But as the years have gone on, the facilities have improved; the support has improved, resources are better and that has allowed us to do more and develop a program to get it to where we can compete for a (Ohio Valley Conference) championship, and that’s where it’s all about.”

And during that development, Guth has been able to bring in some outstanding soccer players over the years, including an OVC Player of the Year, OVC Freshman of the Year, 11 OVC First-Team selections, 18 OVC Second-Team picks, one Third-Team and 11 OVC Newcomer Team picks.

“I feel very fortunate to have coached those players, who all helped chance the culture of the program moving forward,” Guth said. “And we have some exciting players to watch right now, who are very talented and creative attacking players to go with a solid defense.”

While Guth and her team have done just about everything you can in a program’s history, the one thing missing is an OVC championship; with the Govs reaching the conference championship game twice, but coming up just short in 2-1 and 2-0 losses in those contests.

“That’s our goal, we want to win a championship and we do everything we can to put our team in a position to compete and do their best when it matter most,” Guth said. “But winning a championship is not easy; it is something you have to work extremely hard for and we know that no one is just going to let you have it.”

But while the OVC’s top prize has been allusive, Guth feels that can chance in the future as the facility and resources continue to improve.

“We want to continue to develop our resources and our facility that will help continue to improve our recruiting because it is so competitive,” she said. “Each team in our conference is getting better and the OVC is off to its best start as far as results in pre-OVC contests, so I think it will be a great opportunity for us here to continue to build to be that championship team.”


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