June 12 - HIRAM, Ohio - Looking to take his talents internationally, Hiram College women's soccer coach, Michael Cracas, has been selected to lead the American International Sports Teams' (AIST) U-19 girls' soccer team during their trip to the United World Games, next week.
Started in 2001 by Chad Wilkinson and Gary Haarmann, the AIST provides competitive opportunities while creating memorable experiences for individuals. The benefits include learning about a new culture, sightseeing and personal and athletic growth.
"The AIST is thrilled the Coach Cracas will be leading our U-19 team at this year's United World Games (UWG)," remarked Haarmann. "He brings a wealth of soccer knowledge and leadership to the team."
The UWG are one of the largest youth sporting events in Europe. Over 10,000 athletes will be participating in this year's event.
Leading the U-19 team this season, Cracas and the US team will spend 10 days in Europe, spending two days in both Munich, Germany and Milan, Italy while spending five days in Austria for the youth tournament.
"I am excited about the opportunity to work with this organization and to represent the United States in the UWG," remarked Cracas. "I feel very fortunate to have the opportunity to go overseas and coach with this amazing group of young ladies."
Cracas will be entering his third season at the helm of the Hiram women's soccer team. Through two years, Cracas has helped five players earn All-North Coast Athletic Conference honors and also coached Allie Glatt to both All-Ohio and Academic All-Ohio honors in the same season.
In addition, Cracas has gotten the most out of his players in the classroom, earning back-to-back Team Academic Awards from the National Soccer Coaches' Association of America (NSCAA). He now looks to take that success to the International stage.
"Working with the AIST has been a wonderful experience thus far," commented Cracas. "I am looking forward to culminating the experience with this trip and look forward to making it a memorable one for all of the athletes involved."