Two highly-influential local soccer coaches, Lew Meehl and Joe Amorim, received the 2013 Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer Association Excellence in Coaching Award during Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer’s Annual Award Reception, Saturday, March 8th at the Radisson Hotel Philadelphia Northeast.
“The Excellence in Coaching award is presented annually to an individual who has demonstrated a lifetime of dedication to coaching and educating within our community,” said Chris Branscome, Chief Executive Officer of Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer. “Joe Amorim and Lew Meehl have both served Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer and our community with integrity, honor, humor and humility, and both have made extensive and far reaching contributions to the process by which youth soccer players and coaches are taught in Eastern Pennsylvania. We are proud to honor two outstanding individuals like Joe and Lew, who have had such a positive impact on the game of soccer, those that play it, and those that coach it in our community.”
Joe Amorim was the men’s soccer head coach at Haverford College from 1983 through 2008. At the helm of the oldest organized college soccer team program in the nation, Amorim is the winningest coach in Haverford College history, with 215 career wins as head coach. With a career record of 215-223-30, he holds a .491 winning percentage. He guided Haverford College to three Middle Atlantic Conference Southern Division titles, and won the MAC Overall Championship in 1988.
Since 1987, Amorim has been a state coach for Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer, including supervision of Olympic Development Program (ODP) and since 1989 he has been a United States Youth Soccer Association Region I Assessor. In addition, Amorim is a former General Secretary of Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer and a former Referee Evaluation Committee Chairman, among other positions.
He has been a coach at all levels of the sport since the mid-1970s, starting as the first boys’ soccer coach at St. James High School in Chester, Pa. Before becoming head coach at Haverford College, Amorim was the assistant coach for one season, and an assistant coach at Swarthmore College for two years. Amorim was men’s soccer coordinator for the Keystone Games in the mid-1980s, and coached a number of different teams in the United Soccer League of Pennsylvania in the 1980s and 1990s. He also served on a number of NCAA and conference committees while coaching at Haverford College. Amorim received his Bachelor’s degree in Philosophy from LaSalle University and his Master’s degree in Philosophy from Villanova University, and resides in Havertown.
Lew Meehl, who was an Olympic Development Program coach for parts of two decades with Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer, was the men’s soccer head coach at Drexel University for 17 seasons, from 1993 to 2009, compiling a 133-150-31 record. He guided the Dragons to a North Atlantic Conference regular-season championship in 1995, an American East Championship in 1998 and a share of the CAA regular-season title in 2007.
A graduate of Frankford High School, where he played both soccer and baseball, Meehl played collegiate soccer at Temple University where he was a First Team All-America selection in 1967, and was inducted into the Temple Owls Hall of Fame in 1986.
In 1969, Meehl signed with the Philadelphia Spartans of the American Soccer League. In 1973, he moved to the Philadelphia Atoms of the North American Soccer League where he was part of the 1973 NASL championship team. He returned to the ASL in 1975 with the Pittsburgh Miners and the New Jersey Americans in 1976. In 1978, he joined the Philadelphia Fever of the Major Indoor Soccer League for one season.
Meehl served as an assistant coach with the Philadelphia Fever during the 1978-1979 MISL season. In 1981, Meehl coached Philadelphia Bayern to the finals of the National Amateur Cup, and became an assistant coach with the Princeton University men's soccer team in 1982. In 1984, he was hired as head coach of the men's soccer team at Philadelphia Textile. In 1993 he left Philadelphia Textile after compiling a 103-52-23 record. In 2001, he retired after 32 years as a health and physical education teacher at Bensalem High School.
Past recipients of the Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer Association Excellence in Coaching Award include Betty Ann Kempf-Townsley (2012); Terry Underkoffler (2012); John Fellenbaum (2011); and Randy Garber (2011).