Kerry Geocaris, second to right, leads a strong group that has brought premier women's soccer to Green Bay. [Green Bay Glory]
This time last year, Kerry Geocaris was gearing up for her first season with the Milwaukee Torrent.
Geocaris was busy taking part in technical work, film studies and rigorous training sessions as Milwaukee looked to compete for a Northern Conference Championship. The season was a success for both Geocaris and the Torrent, for they fought their way to third place in the conference.
But Geocaris walked away from the pitch, wanting to make even more of an impact.
Now, with less than two weeks before the WPSL season begins, Geocaris can still be found perusing the same goal, just no longer as a player. She is the proud owner of WPSL expansion club the Green Bay Glory.
After leaving the Torrent at the conclusion of the 2018 WPSL season, Geocaris knew that she wanted to make a bigger impact for the game and female athletes throughout the state of Wisconsin.
Recognizing the massive pool of talented women soccer players in Green Bay, with two state champion high school programs and five university teams in and around the city, Geocaris made the decision develop a new women’s team in Green Bay, known as the Glory.
As the Glory continues to prep for its inaugural WPSL season, Geocaris made a point to emphasize the manner in which the Glory’s program was founded on more than just player performance.
“These girls are full of gifts and talents, and they’re powerhouses on the field,” Geocaris said. “But when they step off the field I don’t see that as much.”
With that in mind, the Glory’s staff has developed programs ranging from job-placement opportunities to player-led charitable fundraising, all in an effort to help these players cultivate the confidence and skill set they need to reach their full potential as athletes and people.
On the field, the Glory are looking to compete for a playoff berth in what is a lining up to be a loaded Midwest Conference.
In their inaugural season, coach Chad Johnson will lead the club in its inaugural season. Johnson joins the Glory with more than two decades of experience coaching women’s soccer, for he began his career as the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay women’s soccer coach back in 1993.
Joining Johnson will be a staff of coaches that Geocaris believes serve as the backbone of the entire program.
“The staff that Chad put together, our assistant coaches, our goalie coach, are all cut from the same thread,” Geocaris said. “They are all guys that are super passionate and can’t wait to make an impact.”
Regardless of what happens on the pitch this season, Geocaris and her staff have accomplished something entirely unprecedented in bringing high level women’s soccer to the city of Green Bay. The magnitude of such an accomplishment was not lost on Geocaris.
“It honestly hasn’t even hit me yet, the true impact that this is going to have on girls in the community,” Geocaris said. “At the end of the day, if the work that our team is doing can impact one person, then we’ve done our jobs.”
The Glory kick off their regular season against Geocaris’ former club and in-state rival, the Milwaukee Torrent, on May 25th. Competing in the highly competitive Midwest Conference, won’t be easy for Geocaris and Johnson, but no matter what happens, the season truly will be remarkable.
Thomas Clark is the 2019 WPSL East Region contributor. He can be reached at email@example.com.