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New Head Coaching Staff

Among the change in the athletic department in 2022 was the hiring of five head new coaches. Each one is committed to Dr. Sceggel’s mission of cultivating disciples and pursuing excellence but with their own personal philosophy for achieving that. Here they articulate those personal coaching convictions in their own words.

wbb.jpgScot MacAllister, Head Women’s Basketball Coach

My favorite verse comes from 1 Timothy 4:8, “For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.” Competing with oneself and opponents is valuable for many reasons; however, walking with the Lord in all things, including competition, holds an everlasting value.

Our coaching staff’s vision for this program is to develop women of excellence who glorify God through success both in life and in basketball. We will strive to create value for each individual player while developing her understanding that preparation, serving others, strength in character, self-confidence, and focusing on the fundamentals and details are all key ingredients to success on and off the court.

As we walk with the Lord we wish to create an environment where we:

  • Support teammates with encouragement, constructive feedback, and dedication
  • Allow the individual athlete to thrive while keeping the team first
  • Develop servant leaders who grow through service in the program and the community
  • Develop self-confidence that breeds an attitude of perseverance on and off the court
  • Progress fundamental skills and improve basketball IQ
  • Instill enthusiasm for the game and find joy in the competition as we strive to be good stewards of the skills and abilities God has blessed us with

As with all endeavors that have value we must work diligently, joyfully, and consistently on a daily basis, trusting the words of Jeremiah 29:11: “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

phillips-baseball.jpgPaul Phillips, Head Baseball Coach

My phone rang. It was Tim. My heart skipped a beat, as is normal when you get an unexpected call from your boss. Not two hours earlier, I was desperately praying to God. We had an eight-week old baby, two toddlers under the age of five, and things were tight. I could stay near family with a new job in a different industry, stick it out in my current job and pray for the Lord’s miraculous provision each month, or take a step of faith and look for other coaching jobs. I was coaching at my alma mater and didn’t think there were any high-academic Christian institutions that cared about both faith and excellence in athletics. I prayed, “Lord, I’m really stupid, and I need you to make it abundantly clear what I should do.”

When Dr. Tim Sceggel called, I knew immediately this was where God was calling me to be. It’s rare to find academic institutions that are committed to their Christian beliefs and integrating their faith into their daily lives. It’s especially rare to find academic Christian institutions that visibly care about excellence in arenas outside of academia, much less athletics. And in the Promised Land of Texas?! What could be better? I am so thrilled to be here at LETU under the leadership and guidance of Dr. Mason and Dr. Sceggel.

My vision for the baseball program is that we win a national championship, but more importantly, that we’re known for the quality of our men more than the quality of our play. My mission is that each young man who plays here leaves with a deeper relationship with Christ and with brothers in Christ from the YellowJacket family. I want these men to be better followers of Christ, better husbands, better fathers, and better leaders. To that end, we seek to recruit and develop talented student-athletes who want to step out of their comfort zones to be challenged spiritually, academically, and athletically. And I can’t imagine a better group of men to start this journey with.

coach-steve-lord.jpgSteve Lord, Head Women’s Soccer Coach

The day my family and I set foot on this campus in July—walking onto the soccer field just to take it all in—we had a sense of peace knowing this is exactly where God wants us at this point in our lives. Immediately, we felt welcomed by the entire LeTourneau University community, and we are beyond blessed and honored to be a part of this women’s soccer program.

On the coaching staff, I could not be more thankful to have Suzie Pjecha and my son, Jacen Lord, as graduate assistants. These two incredible coaches have already had a profound impact on this program both spiritually and technically.

This young team has adopted the model of developing a growth mindset. In all that we do, our desire is to bring attention to God’s glory through academics, athletic training, competition, and community. These players strive to be servant-minded role models with coachable attitudes, and they are purposeful in learning every day how to develop a consistent and relentless work ethic while becoming mentally tough. They invite the challenges that come with being a quality student-athlete and take pride and accountability in mastering their skill sets. I am so encouraged by what we have seen already and cannot wait to see how the next chapters unfold with this amazing group of young ladies.

John Wooden said, “Make each day your masterpiece. You cannot change yesterday, and a better tomorrow will be the result of what you do today. If you do your best, angels can do no better. And this present moment—right now—is when you have that opportunity.”

van-holland.jpgBrady Van Holland, Head Men’s Soccer Coach

We have five priorities that we focus on in our program: faith, family, academics, soccer, and everything else. Our team this year did a good job of playing for each other and not for themselves, which is something we are looking to build on moving forward. The idea of servanthood is a vital aspect of our program whether that is serving in the city of Longview, LeTourneau’s campus community, or the teammates that support one another.

For future recruiting classes, we are looking for young men who want to grow in their relationship with the Lord while being challenged daily. We believe God calls us to pursue excellence in everything we do, and that includes soccer, academics, and our relationships with one other. Having a culture that centers around our faith and family is vital to our program’s DNA. Philippians 2:3-4 says, “Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.” Playing soccer at LeTourneau is a unique and special experience due to the relationships you build here over four years.

Those relationships will hopefully be with you for a lifetime. We have a lot of work to do on and off the pitch to make our program the very best it can be. We want to compete in championships within our conference while making a name for ourselves in Division III. We want our guys to be graduating from LeTourneau University with an eagerness to be a disciple of Christ in their specific calling, and to be great sons, siblings, and fathers in their family. It is an honor to be part of the LeTourneau University men’s soccer program, and we want our guys to understand what that means each time they practice, play, and interact with others.

Historic Cinderella Run

The 2022 edition of the LeTourneau men’s soccer team made an improbable run to the American
Southwest Conference tournament title match.
Under first-year head coach Brady Van Holland, the YellowJackets needed to win their final three
matches of the regular season in order to qualify for the conference tournament, and they did just that,
besting Ozarks, Sul Ross State, and Howard Payne in a seven-day stretch to clinch the last postseason spot.
Once in the tournament, the YellowJackets advanced to the championship round for the first time
since 1998, defeating no. 3 seed Hardin-Simmons and no. 2 seed Concordia (both in penalty shootouts!)
in the first two rounds to reach the championship match. Although LeTourneau fell short in the title
game, the team made history along the way.
Raul Torrez ('24) earned ASC Goalkeeper of the Year, while Van Holland and his staff garnered the
league’s Coaching Staff of the Year award. Torrez, Bridger Roberdeau ('25) and Nahum Serrano ('25) each
earned spots on the ASC All-Tournament team. LeTourneau placed five players on All-ASC teams, led
by Torrez’s first team selection, while Russell Gray ('23) Emad Mohamed ('24), Karson Johnson ('26), and
Serrano earned spots on the second team.