Pieter Lehrer will serve his sixth season as the Virginia B. and James O. Welch, Jr. '52 Head Coach for Harvard Men's Soccer in 2018-19. Lehrer joined the Crimson in April of 2013.
Over the course of half a decade in Cambridge, Lehrer registered a 39-31-12 record, including a 19-9-5 record agaisnt Ivy League opponents. Additionally, he has coached 19 All-Ivy League selections, seven first team members, eight second team honorees, and four honorable mention selections, as well as four regional all-American selections and one Ivy League Rookie of the Year, Sam Brown (2014). Under Lehrer's leadership, two Crimson players have been drafted by Major League Soccer (Ross Friedman '14, and Andrew Wheeler-Omiunu '17).
Lehrer made an immediate impact on the Harvard program upon his arrivial in Cambridge, helping the Crimson to a 7-8-2 mark and second-place finish in the Ivy League in his inaugural season. The Crimson, which had gone two years without an Ivy League victory, compiled a 5-2-0 conference mark in 2013 and faced eventual champion Penn with the league title on the line in the final game of the season. Four players earned All-Ivy League honors in Lehrer's first season at the helm of the program.
At the helm in year two, Lehrer's squad went 11-4-2 with a 4-1-2 mark in Ancient Eight play. The Crimson protected their home field in 2014, finsihing unbeaten at 9-0. Four Harvard standouts earned first team All-Ivy nods, including Ivy Defensive Player of the Year Mark Ashby. The team's 11 wins were its most since 2009.
In his third season at the head of the program, Harvard posted a 9-6-2 overall mark with his second five-win Ivy season in three years. Finishing second in the Ancient Eight, Harvard landed a conference-best eight players with All-Ivy recognition, led by first team nods for Jake Freeman and Andrew Wheeler-Omiunu. The Crimson narrowly missed out on a trip to the NCAA men's soccer tournament, having posted numerous wins over top-50 teams in the RPI. Continuing to show a rise to prominence in the college soccer realm, the Crimson finished ranked 38th in the RPI.
The men's soccer program continued to improve under his tutelage, registering 10 wins in his fourth year at the helm, climbing into the top-15 nationally in the RPI. Wheeler-Omiunu became the ninth Crimson player drafted, taken in the third round, 49th overall in the 2017 MLS Draft by Atlanta United FC. In 2017, Lehrer brought in a talented group of six freshman that combined to play 5,160 minutes, and tallying four goals and four assists for 12 points for the Crimson. Sebastian Lindner-Liaw, who started 15 of 16 games at midfield in 2017, played the most minutes of the six first years and became the first freshman since 2014 to earn All-Ivy honors, garnering All-Ivy honorable mention accolades.
Prior to his arrivial in Cambridge, Lehrer served as the associate head coach with the Golden Bears, helping Cal to years of success. During his time at Cal, he saw the team capture three Pac 12 titles and finish runner-up in the league on two other occasions. The Bears also reached the NCAA tournament five times during his tenure with the team, twice advancing to the Sweet 16. He has also seen several of his players go on to play in the professional ranks, holding down spots in the MLS, Europe, USL-1 and USSF Division II Pro League. His responsibilities with the Bears included recruiting, training, player development, game operations and management, video, alumni relations, administration and camps.
Lehrer joined the Bears from the University of Evansville in Indiana, where he spent the 2004 season as an assistant coach. While at Evansville, the program enjoyed its best season since 1996-97 and compiled a winning record for the first time in four years. One player moved on to sign and play with the MLS.
Previously, he spent four years as an assistant coach for Stanford from 1999-2001 and in 2003. During this time, Stanford made three NCAA College Cup appearances. From those teams, 11 players signed and played with MLS teams. For this success, Lehrer was honored with the AFLAC National Assistant Coach of the Year award in 2003.
During the 2001 and 2002 seasons, Lehrer served as an assistant coach with the Los Angeles Galaxy of the MLS. While with the Galaxy, the club won both the 2002 MLS Cup and the 2001 Open Cup. Lehrer has also served as an assistant coach for the Olympic Development Program (ODP) U-18 Region IV team, as well as the head coach for the ODP District II team.
Lehrer holds a United States Soccer Federation A License and a NSCAA Advanced National Diploma.
As a player, Lehrer played for UCLA and was a member of the program's first NCAA Championship team in 1985. He also played professionally in Europe from 1986-88. Lehrer graduated from UCLA in 1990 with a degree in history.
Lehrer participated in the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta as a member of the Antigua high kneel canoe team, along with qualifying and competing in the Ironman Championships in Kona, Hawaii, in 1990.
Lehrer comes to Cambridge with his wife Christy, a former record-holder and team captain on the Stanford track and field team, and their two children.