BOULDER — It might not exactly be like John Elway calling it quits after winning consecutive Super Bowl titles. Nevertheless, Jeremy Pinard is making his exit from Fairview on the heels of an extremely rewarding accomplishment.
Pinard, the girls soccer coach for the Knights the past six seasons, has announced he is leaving the program less than two weeks after leading Fairview in the Class 5A state championship game. Pinard actually informed the Fairview administration, as well as the team, of his decision before the season but kept it under wraps throughout the Knights’ state runner-up campaign.
“I’d rather just go off in the sunset without anyone knowing about it,” Pinard said. “It was just time. I need time to rejuvenate.”
Pinard compiled a record of 78-26-5 during his six seasons at Fairview, taking over a struggling program that he transformed into a perennial state power.
The Knights went 4-8-3 during Pinard’s first season in 2007 but made big strides in a hurry, reaching the second round of the state tournament in 2008 and remaining a fixture among the state’s elite ever since.
The Knights reached the 5A semifinals in 2009 and collected the program’s first state title a year later with a 2-0 victory against Arapahoe. After reaching the state quarterfinals in 2011, Fairview returned to the state title game last week, ultimately dropping a hard-fought 1-0 decision against Cherry Creek.
His success at Fairview came on the heels of a six-year run at Niwot during which the Cougars went 82-18-4, were 4A state runners-up twice and reached at least the semifinals five times in all.
Although Fairview fell just short in its bid to capture two Class 5A state titles in three seasons, the playoff run marked one of Pinard’s finest moments as a coach. While the Knights stumbled through a late 0-2-1 stretch in the regular season, Fairview rebounded to record a 5-0 victory in the regular season finale, setting the stage for a stirring postseason surge.
Entering the state tournament as the No. 15 seed, the Knights put together a Cinderella run. Fairview did not allow a goal in the state tournament until Cherry Creek’s lone tally in the title game, and the Knights knocked off second-seeded Fossil Ridge along the way in the second round.
While Pinard did not rule out coaching again down the road, he said he will not be pursuing coaching jobs in the immediate future. Pinard already had been balancing his coaching duties with his full-time job as the chief lending officer at Community Financial Credit Union in Broomfield, and he will be getting married later this summer.
“(The bank) has been very understanding about when I have to be out, but it gets difficult,” Pinard said. “I’m getting married this summer, and sometimes I know I’m not the easiest guy to be around after a tough practice or game. The kids need someone who can go 100 miles an hour, and I just can’t do that now.
“I think what I’m most proud of is that we had about five to 10 former players at that state game. We as a group, from our first year to now, have made Fairview a competitive program in the state and have become the kind of program the school can be proud of.”
Fairview athletic director Frank Lee indicated that Pinard typically takes a little time at the end of each season to mull his options for the following year. Throughout this season, however, Lee said Pinard seemed comfortable with the idea that this would be his final season.
The search for Pinard’s successor is expected to begin next week.
“His players always seemed to be in the right position and they never beat themselves,” Lee said. “His record speaks for itself. Unfortunately this makes sense for him, but he leaves the program in great shape. Since it’s the beginning of the summer we’re not in a real hurry, but I’d like to get it done before the end of the summer.”
Follow Pat Rooney on Twitter: @prooney07