The Pittsburgh Riverhounds wasted no time filling their coaching vacancy. Dave Brandt has been chosen as the new manager, taking over after Mark Steffens was let go following a 2-1 victory over Toronto FC II and a 1-4-3 start to the 2016 season. Brandt was rumored to have been considered for the Riverhounds job prior to the hiring of Steffens.
"We set out to find the best coach for this club and I think we have it with Dave," Riverhounds owner Tuffy Shallenberger said in a statement released by the club. There will be a press conference on Monday, May 23 at 3pm at Highmark Stadium to formally introduce Brandt.
Brandt's prior successes come from the collegiate level. In nearly 20 years of coaching he holds a 310-72-34 record and is the fastest NCAA men's soccer coach to reach 200 wins. He spent twelve years at Messiah College and the last seven years at the United States Naval Academy.
As a coach, Brandt has been awarded the NSCAA Coach of the Year honor four times, as well as the Patriot League Coach of the Year and the MSCAA Mid-Atlantic Region Coach of the Year. He won six NCAA Division III titles at Messiah, making eight appearances in his last nine years coaching the Falcons. His 2005 team went an impressive 24-0-0, a record that is held by only a select few programs at any NCAA level. Brandt has molded his players to receive recognition, coaching five NSCAA Players of the Year recipients, 19 NSCAA All-Americans, 46 NSCAA All-Region selections, 14 Conference Players of the Year and 87 All-Conference performers.
Brandt's first challenge will be this Saturday night, as the Riverhounds travel to take on New York Red Bulls II. Pittsburgh currently sits at 13th in the Eastern Conference with 6 points after eight games. After an early exit in the US Open Cup, focus is solely on making the playoffs.