Photo Gallery By Michael P. Reese
Photos by Ivan Pierre Aguirre
4-1. Photos by Ivan Pierre Aguirre
Photo Gallery by Michael Patrick Reese
Former UTEP soccer player and graduate assistant Heather Clark has returned to her alma mater, and will head into her fourth season as an assistant coach in 2013. She was appointed to the position on Feb. 1, 2010.
She rejoined the Miners following a successful two-year stint as an assistant for the then rapidly-improving Valparaiso soccer program.
Clark, who was standout defender and four-year letterwinner under UTEP head coach Kevin Cross from 2001-04, got her start in coaching at the Sun City. She served as a program coordinator in 2006 & 2007 before being hired away as the top assistant for the Valpo program.
In 2009 Valpo registered a mark of 11-9-1, including 5-3 in the Horizon League, on the way to securing its top regular-season finish (third) since joining the conference. The squad advanced to the league tournament championship contest for the first time in school history, and ultimately finished with its sixth straight season of at least 10 triumphs.
In her first season on the Crusader bench (2008), Clark's knowledge on defense was instrumental in the squad setting school records for goals against average (0.71) and shutouts (10).
Clark's appointment to an assistant coach position with the Miners allowed her career to come full circle. She first arrived in El Paso as a freshman in 2001, and immediately became a fixture on the defense. The native of Alamogordo, N.M., played in 70 games, including 65 starts. She got in on the fun offensively, contributing 19 points on four goals and 11 assists. A two-year captain, Clark's leadership skills are unquestioned. She personified the term student-athletic, earning first-team CoSIDA Academic All-American honors in 2004. At the time she was just the second Miner student-athlete to be so distinguished. Clark also garnered a pair of academic all-district awards by CoSIDA.
She also picked up several UTEP team awards in her time with the Orange and Blue. She took home the "Honor Award" in 2002 and then picked up the "Iron Women Award" in 2004.
Clark joined the UTEP soccer program as a player following a record-setting career at Alamogordo HS. She set a school record for career goals (69) while also registering 54 assists under the direction of her coach and father, Larry Clark.
Clark earned her bachelor's degree in interdisciplinary studies from UTEP in 2006. She received her master's degree in education administration from the school in 2008.