Steve Axtell enters his eighth season as Cortland’s men’s soccer head coach in 2019 with an overall record of 100-35-8 (.727).
Axtell has led the Red Dragons to four NCAA Division III tournaments over the past five seasons, including three trips to the "Sweet 16" during that stretch.
In 2016, he led the Red Dragons to a 19-3 record and both the SUNYAC tournament and regular-season titles. The team set a school record for victories and shutouts (14) and advanced to the NCAA "Sweet 16." Axtell earned both SUNYAC and ECAC North Coach of the Year honors, and he and his assistants were tabbed as the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) East Region Coaching Staff of the Year.
Cortland also reached the NCAA "Sweet 16" in both 2014 and 2018. The 2018 squad went 17-3-3, won the SUNYAC regular-season title and finished second in the conference playoffs. The 2014 team was 16-5-1 and placed second in both the SUNYAC regular season and postseason. In 2017, Cortland went 16-4, won the SUNYAC regular-season crown and advanced to the NCAA second round.
Axtell also guided his 2015 team to a 12-5-2 mark, and his 2013 squad went 11-7-1 and was the SUNYAC tournament runner-up. Cortland finished 9-8-1 in his inaugural season as head coach in 2012.
Axtell was named the head coach in June 2012 after serving as interim head coach for five months and as an assistant coach for the Red Dragons in 2010 and 2011. He also was a volunteer student assistant coach during the 2007 season.
A goalkeeper for the Red Dragons for three seasons (2006, 2008-09), Axtell earned All-SUNYAC honors in 2008 and appeared in 39 career games with nine shutouts. He earned a bachelor’s degree in kinesiology in 2008 and obtained a master’s degree in exercise science in 2014.
A native of Franklin, N.Y., Axtell holds a Premier Diploma and an Advanced National Goalkeeping Diploma from the NSCAA with Distinguished Pass. He was appointed to the NSCAA National Staff, which makes him both a National Staff member as well as Associate National Goalkeeping Staff for the NSCAA. He teaches NSCAA coaching courses throughout the Northeast and directs the Goalkeeper College ID Camps at the University of Connecticut during the summer.
Axtell also is a certified strength and conditioning specialist and has received a conditioning for soccer diploma from the International Coaches Association. He is the founder and director of the OnePlus Soccer Academy in Ithaca, N.Y., which features teams ranging from U8 to U18, residential camps and clinics. The Academy does the training for various soccer clubs in the area, has a goalkeeping academy and conducts coaching education clinics throughout the year. Part of the organization is a non-profit club that holds grassroots programs for young players at no cost throughout New York state.
Besides assisting with both the men’s and women’s soccer programs at Cortland, Axtell has served as the head coach of the Central Region scholastic soccer team at the Empire State Games. He has acted as director of soccer at Camp Winadu in Mass. for two years and Ithaca MicroSoccer for one year. In April 2013, Axtell was named to the ODP Region-1 Staff as its goalkeeper coach.
Axtell and his wife, Heidi, the Cortland women’s soccer coach, currently reside in Tully with their daughter Allie and Heidi's daughters Mari and Kenzie.
Heidi Axtell enters her 16th season as the head coach of the Cortland women’s soccer program in 2019. She has posted a career record of 150-103-38 and is second all-time in wins at Cortland.
Axtell led the Red Dragons to NCAA Division III tournament "Elite 8" and an 14-6-3 overall record in 2011. That season was Cortland's best campaign since the program won 1992 NCAA Division III title. Cortland tied for fifth nationally and won the SUNYAC regular-season-title for the first time since the conference went to one division in 1995. In 2012, her squad won the SUNYAC tournament crown, advanced to the NCAA Division III "Sweet 16" and finished 12-5-6.
In all, Axtell's teams have reached double-figure wins nine times, most recently in 2018 with an 11-5-2 mark and a second-place SUNYAC tournament finish and in 2017 with a 10-5-3 mark and a tie for third in the SUNYAC tournament. The Red Dragons were 12-5-3 in 2009, 11-6-3 in 2010, 12-6-2 in 2007, 12-9 in 2005 and 10-8-1 in 2006, in addition to the seasons mentioned above. Cortland has finished as SUNYAC tournament runner-up seven times under Axtell's guidance. She was named SUNYAC Coach of the Year in 2007.
Axtell's players have earned 67 All-SUNYAC honors, including one Player of the Year and two Rookie of the Year designations, along with 18 all-region, seven All-ECAC and three All-NYSWCAA awards.
Axtell is a 2002 graduate of Nazareth College, where (as Heidi Brown) she earned her bachelor’s degree in psychology and was a starting center defender for the nationally ranked women’s soccer program. As a senior, she was named a second team All-American and the Empire 8 Player of the Year. A 2010 Nazareth Sports Hall of Fame inductee, she was a two-time all-region and three-time all-state and all-conference selection. She earned her master’s degree in sports science from the United States Sports Academy in the summer of 2005. She served as an assistant coach for the Red Dragons for one season prior to becoming head coach.
Formerly Heidi Woodcock during her Cortland coaching tenure prior to 2016, Axtell and her husband Steve, the Cortland men’s soccer coach, live in Tully with their daughter, Allie, and Heidi's two daughters, Mari and Kenzie.
Kyle Dezotell was named the 10th coach in the 84-year history of the Ithaca College men's soccer program on June 1, 2017.
The Bombers continued to trend upward in during Dezotell's third year at the helm of the program in 2019. IC rounded out the season at No. 23 in the United Soccer Coaches Top 25 poll after earning its first NCAA Tournament bid for the first time since 2008. The Bombers' win over Keene State in the first round marked the first NCAA Tournament win since 2002.
Under Dezotell's guidance, senior goalkeeper Max Lichtenstein was named Liberty League and ECAC Defensive Player of the Year. Lichtenstein was also a United Soccer Coaches All-East Region First Team selection, while Theo Scott picked up All-East Region Second Team honors.
The Bombers also garnered four all-conference selections in 2019, headlined by Lichtenstein. Scott and senior Tom Dillmann picked up All-Liberty League Second Team honors while senior Justinian Michaels earned an All-Liberty League Honorable Mention.
In 2018, in his second year at IC, Dezotell coached the Bombers to their most successful season in 20 years, notching a 14-2-4 overall record, a 5-2-2 mark in conference and a trip to the Liberty League Championship game. For the first time in program history, IC finished its non-conference slate without a loss, rounding it out with a 7-0-1 record.
Dezotell also coached the program's first All-American since 1997, as goalkeeper Max Lichtenstein earned United Soccer Coaches All-America Second Team honors. Lichtenstein previously picked up United Soccer Coaches All-East Region First Team accolades as well as being named All-Liberty League First Team.
Additionally, Nate Schoen and Jon Kyriakidis also notched all-region honors, as both were named to the United Soccer Coaches All-East Region Third Team.
After being ranked both in the the region and nationally throughout the season, the Bombers garnered five all-conference selections, headlined by Lichtenstein's first team honor. Kyriakidis was named to the All-Liberty League Second Team while Schoen, Jack Monnes and Tom Dillmann each earned an All-Liberty League Honorable Mention.
In Dezotell's first year at the helm of the program, the Bombers finished 7-8-2 with a 2-6-1 mark in the Liberty League. IC rounded out the season with a 5-2-1 non-conference record, which was the first time since 2012 that Ithaca had a winning non-conference mark. The Bombers also started the season going 2-0 at the Cadet Classic, which was IC's best start to a season since 2008. Additionally, two players - Nate Schoen and Nate Mansfield - earned All-Conference honors in Dezotell's first year.
Dezotell brings 13 highly successful seasons of head coaching experience with him to South Hill. Most recently, he served as the Head Men’s Soccer Coach and Compliance Coordinator at Manhattanville College during the 2016 season. During his one season with the Valiants, he led the team to an 11-7 record, guiding four players to earning All-MAC Freedom honors, which included Defensive Player of the Year Christoffer Staahl.
Prior to joining the coaching staff at Manhattanville, Dezotell spent 10 seasons at the helm of the men’s soccer program at Norwich University. He also spent his final three years at Norwich as an Assistant Athletic Director for Compliance. In his decade leading the Cadets, he posted a 130-63-18 (.659) record, which included one Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) Championship and subsequent NCAA Tournament appearance in 2008. Dezotell posted winning records during all 10 of his years in Northfield, Vt., earning GNAC Coach of the Year honors in 2007, 2008, and 2012.
In addition to his 10 appearances in the semifinals of the GNAC Tournament, Dezotell led Norwich to five GNAC Championship Game appearances, while his teams qualified for the ECAC New England Tournament appearances eight times during his tenure. His teams marked double-digit victories in each of his 10 seasons, which included a program-best 19 in 2007.
Dezotell began his collegiate head coaching career at Johnson State College, where he spent two seasons in 2004 and 2005. He was named North Atlantic Conference (NAC) Coach of the Year during his second season, turning around a team that lost 14 times during his inaugural season at the helm to posting an 8-6-4 mark, which included a 6-1-2 record in conference games. He also spent a season as an assistant coach at Saint Michael’s College in 2003, prior to taking the helm of the Johnson State program.
During his time in coaching, Dezotell has guided his players to a combined 72 All-Conference honors, 16 All-Region selections, and five ECAC All-Stars. He has had at least one player earn NSCAA All-Region honors in 10 consecutive seasons.
Dezotell graduated from Middlebury College with his Bachelor of Arts in Film and English Studies. He was accomplished player for the Panthers men’s soccer program, ranking second all-time in career points (90) and assists (22). He is still the program’s all-time leader with 34 career goals. His scoring prowess helped power the team to the inaugural NESCAC Tournament title as a sophomore, while he helped the Panthers capture the ECAC New England Championship as a freshman. Middlebury went 44-15-10 during his playing career.
Dezotell has served on several committees during his coaching tenure, including the ECAC New England Selection Committee and the NCAA Tournament Regional Advisory Committee. He holds NSCAA National Diploma and Advance National Diploma licenses.
Robert Emmett enters his third season with the Binghamton program in 2019. Prior to joining the Bearcats staff, he spent one season as the top assistant at Division II Lake Erie College in Painesville Ohio. Emmett assists Marco in all facets of the program, including the training and development of the goalkeepers, recruiting, field player training and development, game preparation and opponent scouting.
In 2016, Emmett assisted the Lake Erie College Storm who opened the year with team's best start in program history at 5-1-0, before concluding the season with an 8-7-4 record, the second-most victories in single-season program history. Fueling the team's run were its efforts on defense, as the Storm ranked inside the top-11 in the nation in several statistical categories, including shutouts (3rd), goals-against average (4th), save percentage (9th) and shutout percentage (11th). That same year, six players received All-GLIAC and All-Tournament Team honors. Additionally, Lake Erie was the only institution to have a freshman receive First-Team accolades. He also helped to develop goalkeeper Hugo Fauroux, who was the 2016 GLIAC Goalkeeper of the Year.
Prior to joining the Storm, Emmett served as an assistant coach for the SUNY Cortland men’s soccer program where he assisted in the development of second team All SUNYAC Goalkeeper Joe Brandofino. Emmett competed for the Red Dragons men’s soccer program from 2010-2013 as a goalkeeper.
In 2014, Emmett served as an assistant coach for the Cortland women’s soccer program. He also had a part in the development of the local soccer community, as he served as a staff coach for the OnePlus Soccer Academy.
In December of 2016, he earned his masters degree in Sport Management from SUNY Cortland. He earned his bachelor's degree in Sport Management and a minor in communications from SUNY Cortland in 2014.
Emmett holds his NSCAA Advanced National Goalkeeping Diploma. He also holds his Advanced National NSCAA Diploma and his USSF D License.
THE EMMETT FILE
Assistant Coach, Binghamton University: 2017-present
Assistant Coach, Lake Erie College: 2016
Assistant Coach, SUNY Cortland: 2015
Assistant Coach: SUNY Cortland Women's Team: 2014