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Thunder’s greatest era comes to an end

Algonquin is bidding farewell to the people behind the most successful five years in the college’s women’s soccer history.

Dom Oliveri, now former head coach of the Thunder women’s soccer team, along with five other members of his staff, recently left Algonquin and moved to Carleton where they will be coaching for the foreseeable future.

Coming off a five-year stint with Algonquin, Oliveri coached the Thunder to a 73-8-2 record during his tenure. He also led the team to three consecutive provincial titles and a national bronze.

“Algonquin and the Thunder regret to see he and his staff move on,” a statement on the Thunder athletics page says. “But we are grateful for the exhaustive time and energy they have put into developing the women’s soccer program here at Algonquin and we are confident that the foundation they have helped build will continue to benefit the Thunder for years to come.”

The Thunder has always been a successful team, consistently keeping a record of high wins and minimal losses. But Oliveri brought an era of even greater success, leading the team to a national bronze — “ the highest yet to be achieved by (the Thunder) in their history,” as stated on the Students’ Association website.

Oliveri gives the team just as much praise as he receives. He says when he arrived the team has “all the pieces available to be successful.” He told the Times in an interview that he was given all the resources needed and a team with strong fundamentals giving him the ability to focus on ferocity and technicality rather than teach a team how to play

In his new position with Carleton he hasn’t moved much ground yet, meeting the players, learning about the existing program, meeting and listened to their needs but believes there’s a “process you need to go through as a program to be successful,” which will have to wait until fall.

In making the decision to leave, Oliveri and his staff had a difficult choice to make. The decision came down to a new opportunity and challenge. He hopes to transfer their success in the OUA, the university counterpart to the OCAA, a challenge he always wanted to take on.

As exciting a new challenge is, Oliveri says he will miss Algonquin.

“It’s a special place for us,” said Oliveri. “We’re going to miss the student athletes and campus and all the staff we worked with.”

Moving forward, next season is an unsure venture. There is no known replacement for Oliveri but hopefully, the Thunder can continue their success in the years to come.

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