Lander University head men's soccer coach Lee Squires announced on Monday the hiring of James Smith as an assistant coach for the Bearcat men's soccer program. Lewis most recently served as a graduate assistant at East Tennessee State University during the 2016 season.
"I know James very well having recruited him to Lees-McRae and he is someone I trust one-hundred percent," said Squires. "James has a tremendous work ethic and will be a great asset to our program, school and community. We are already seeing the benefits of his work and he'll play a big part in our future success."
"I am extremely excited to be working with Coach Squires again having played for him during my time at Lees-McRae," said Smith. "I understand his coaching techniques and philosophy and I am eager to implement my own ideas to help contribute to what already is a great men's soccer program. I would also like to thank Brian Reese on his help and support during this transition. I have followed Lander during my time in America and I am extremely ambitious and hungry to build on the program's recent success. My background in sport science at LMC and more recently at ETSU will play a major role in helping to develop, monitor, and improve our players. I cannot wait to get started."
During his time at ETSU, Smith helped guide the Buccaneers to a Southern Conference regular season title and a berth in the NCAA Tournament. Smith also served as a youth coach with the boys' and girls' programs for FC Dallas Tri.
A four-year starter for Squires at Lees-McRae from 2011-14, Smith started 60 matches and tallied 53 career points with 17 goals and 19 assists. He earned All-Conference, All-Region, and First Team Academic All-American honors at Lees-McRae. Smith played his final season at East Tennessee State, starting all 19 matches finishing with 19 points on seven goals and five assists. He was named the SoCon Player of the Month in September of 2015.
Smith spent three seasons in the Premier Developmental League, playing for the Carolina Dynamo from 2013-14 and GPS Portland Phoenix in 2015.
He has earned a bachelor's in sports science from Lees-McRae and a master's from ETSU.