Stanford's Ratcliffe named Women's Coach of the Year

[SOCCER AMERICA AWARDS] In his sixth season at Stanford, Coach Paul Ratcliffe has built the Cardinal program into one of the best in the country.

Stanford earned a No. 1 regional seed and reached the final four for the first time since 1993 when Julie Foudy was still playing. The Cardinal fell, 1-0, in the semifinals to Notre Dame but not before putting an impressive display.

Stanford set a school season record for wins (22) and goals (71). Its only blemishes in its 22-2-1 season were to College Cup teams -- 1-0 losses to Notre Dame and UCLA and a  1-1 tie with North Carolina.

"It's been a spectacular season," Ratcliffe said. "The team has played great soccer the entire year and I'm proud of every one of them."

Stanford should be very good again in 2009. The Cardinal will return Soccer America Freshman of the Year Lindsay Taylor and Teresa Noyola and Kelley O'Hara, who also earned All-America honors.

SOCCER AMERICA COACHES OF THE YEAR
2001 -- Jerry Smith (Santa Clara)
2002 -- Stephanie Erickson, Paul Sapsford (Stanford)
2003 -- Patrick Baker (Florida State)
2004 -- Dan Tobias (Arizona)
2005 -- Mark Krikorian (Florida State)
2006 -- Anson Dorrance (North Carolina)
2007 -- Ali Khosroshahin (USC)
2008 -- Paul Ratcliffe (Stanford)

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