Written by Andrew Capitelli (SJC-LI Sports Information)
Patchogue, NY| The St. Joseph's College (L.I.) athletic department and college community is saddened to hear of the passing of former men's soccer and softball head coach Gary Smith.
Smith, who passed on Sunday evening, was the first-ever coach of both the men's soccer and softball teams, founded in 1986 and 1988, respectively. Smith helmed the men's soccer team until 2011 and the softball team until 2004.
Smith's career highlights include winning the NAIA District 31 soccer championship in 1991, three Skyline championships—two for soccer (2008, 2009) and one for softball (2000)—five consecutive Hudson Valley Conference crowns from 1995-1999 and three WIAC championships. He also coached three NCAA statistical champions in Allyson Wolff, Tim Trava and Chris Kunzig and built a network where more than 15 of his players have become youth coaches.
In 2000, Smith became the first coach in SJC history to lead a team to a Skyline title and compete in the NCAA Division III Tournament with the women's softball team. In 2008, the men's soccer team won the Skyline championship, making Smith the first coach to take two different teams to NCAA Tournaments. During his 26-year tenure as men's soccer coach, Smith compiled a 317-197-23 record and was inducted into the Golden Eagle's Athletic Hall of Fame in 2009, two years before his retirement.
A Patchogue-Medford High School and University at Albany graduate, Smith taught English at East Islip and Commack High Schools before retiring in 1997.
Memorial service for Smith will take place on Saturday, July 15 at the Riverhead United Methodist Church at 10:00 am.
In lieu of flowers, the Smith Family is asking for donations, in Gary's name, to the American Kidney Fund.