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w/ former WNT midfielder Shannon Higgins-Cirovski


What ever happened to what's-his-face? Did you hear about so-and-so? Where are they now? Inquiring minds want to know. So we give you "Then and Now," a piece that will reacquaint you with a former National Team player or coach, from their exploits on the field for the USA to their current line of work or play. Are they still playing? Coaching? Maybe even day trading? Read on and find out.

Shannon Higgins THEN:
One of the winningest players in women’s soccer history, Higgins was one of the first consistent starters and one of the founders of the U.S. Women’s National Team program, earning 51 caps in her five years of international duty.  Once she made her debut for the U.S. Women’s National Team debut in 1987, the 5’5” midfielder failed to start in just three games that the U.S. played over the next five years, including 10 starts in 11 games in that debut year. She was a key member of the 1991 U.S. Women's World Cup champion team, registering two goals and eight assists (including assists on both goals in the 2-1 final victory over Norway) in starting 25 of 26 matches in the most productive year of her international career. Higgins was also a four-time NCAA champion at North Carolina, helping the Tarheels to an 89-0-6 record in her four years there and earning national consensus player of the year as a senior in 1989. She also lifted UNC to successive titles from 1986-89, scoring the game-winning goal in three of the four title games. The 1991 WWC was the last time she played for the USA.

Shannon Higgins-Cirovski NOW:
After her days with the WNT, Higgins went on to become the head coach of George Washington University. The Kent, Wash., native is now married to Sasho Cirovski, hence the hyphenated last name, and joined him on the Univ. of Maryland Athletics staff as the Women’s Soccer head coach in January of 1999. (Sasho Cirvoski has been the Men’s Soccer head coach since 1993.) Her appointment made an immediate impact, as she coached the Lady Terrapins to their best ever ACC finish (a 4-2-0 record, good for second place behind UNC) in just her first year. A year later, she guided Maryland to their highest ranking since 1997 when they reached number 9. This season, the Lady Terps are off to a 7-5-0 mark and have their sights set on an NCAA Tournament visit in December. Before heading to Maryland, she was head coach of the U.S. Under-18 Women’s National Team, as well as assistant coach on the U-20 and full Women’s National Team, leading the U-18s to an undefeated record in 1998. Shannon and Sasha have three daughters: Hailey (8), Karli (6) and new addition Ellie Summer, who was born on July 15 of this year. This past weekend, Shannon Higgins-Cirovski was inducted into the National Soccer Hall of Fame, becoming just the third woman and the youngest person (player or coach) to be so honored at the Hall in Oneonta, N.Y.

Table of Contents
1) Armchair Midfielder (Rating the MLS Cups)
2) In Threes (w/ U-20 MNT defender Ryan Cochrane)
3) Then and Now (w/ former WNT midfielder Shannon Higgins-Cirovski)
4) Queries and Anecdotes (w/ MNT midfielder Cobi Jones)
5) Mark That Calendar (October = Everything)
6) Superstar!!! (w/ WNT defender Danielle Slaton)
7) FAN Point/Counterpoint (Impact U.S. Player for 2002 Women’s Gold Cup?)
8) "You Don’t Know Jack (Marshall)" (MLS Cup trivia)

Download this issue of Center Circle (.pdf)

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