Former Walt Whitman and Richard Montgomery high schools girls soccer coach Tony Pykosh will take over the Holy Cross program this fall, the school’s Athletic Director Jenna Ries confirmed Tuesday.
Pykosh, who led Whitman to its only state title in 2004, replaces former five-year coach Nelson Abreu. The Gazette’s Coach of the Year in 2012, Abreu resigned from his post to pursue a master’s degree in educational leadership at Hood College in Frederick.
The Tartans’ 32-2-1 record this fall was their best in 13 years. They fell in the Washington Catholic Athletic Conference semifinals and are still looking for their first league title.
Pykosh said he is hopeful he can continue the team’s forward trajectory. Ries said she was impressed with his vision and experience.
“You cannot undervalue what Nelson did for this program, they’re playing at a very high level. We’re looking for Tony to take us over the top and win the championship. He seemed very dynamic. I know he’s very experienced, he won the state title at Whitman,” Ries said.
Pykosh said he was intrigued by the opportunity to coach in the county’s private school sector.
Pykosh, who said he was hesitant to delve back into high school coaching because he has two young children, said the challenge of competing against new teams was too appealing to ignore.
Pykosh added that he relished the chance to make his mark on a growing program.
“He’s experienced at winning at a very high level. You need people who have really been down that road,” Ries said.