Fire Ant Athletics Hires New Head Men's Soccer Coach
Sumter, SC (05/04/2017) — The University of South Carolina Sumter is proud to announce the hiring of Joel Bristol as the new Head Men's Soccer Coach for the Fall 2017 season.
Bristol, a Florida native, graduated from Coker College in December 2014 with a Bachelor's Degree in Psychology and is currently pursuing his Master's Degree in College Athletic Administration at Coker.
After a four-year playing career with the Cobras, Bristol served as a graduate assistant and competed in cross country during his freshman year. In addition to his time as a student-athlete, Bristol worked as the Head Boys' Soccer Coach for the South Carolina Governor's School for Science and Mathematics (GSSM). Currently in his fifth season at GSSM, he has led the Eagles to a pair of SCHSL Class 1A Lower State Championships and a record of 40-23-1. The program produced a pair of All-State selections.
Bristol joins USC Sumter after serving two seasons as Coker College's Assistant Men's Soccer Coach. Following an outstanding playoff run in the South Atlantic Conference (SAC) tournament, the NCAA Division II program finished the 2016-2017 season ranked sixth in the SAC. The team was ranked number 11 in the pre-season poll.
"Bristol is a great addition to the Athletics Department," USC Sumter Director of Athletics Adrienne "Age" Cataldo said. "His success in academics and athletics make him a great leader for our men's soccer program. He has great enthusiasm and love for the game of soccer. I'm looking forward to seeing what he will accomplish as a Fire Ant."
Men's soccer is one of six NJCAA Region X Division I Intercollegiate sports at USC Sumter. Although soccer has been offered and discontinued at USC Sumter in the past, Cataldo feels it stands the best chance of success now.
"We are excited to see soccer make a comeback," Cataldo said. "We have a strong athletics department that is ready for men's soccer. The pool of players both locally and from around the southeast is ready to play at this level and establish a strong tradition here."
Aside from his work in the Hartsville community, Bristol is heavily involved with ADARE Soccer Inc. ADARE is a non-profit organization that provides free soccer camps, clinics and gear to communities in St. Vincent, the Grenadines and surrounding islands each summer. The organization aims to use soccer to teach life skills, foster personal growth in youth to strengthen their relationships with the community and promote educational achievement.
While in St. Vincent, Bristol volunteers as a youth coach at professional club, System 3 FC in the capital city of Kingstown. The St. Vincent & The Grenadines Football Federation has also invited him on occasion, to assist in training their U-15 women's national team. Bristol holds a USSF Level - F coaching license.
Bristol is actively recruiting student athletes for the Fall 2017 season. Potential players should visit uscfireants.com to fill out a potential player form or contact Coach Bristol directly at 803-938-3866.
Bristol resides in Hartsville, South Carolina with his college sweetheart April and their newborn son, Aaron.