Matt Johnson (hiring release) will enter his third season at the helm of the Franklin Pierce University women's soccer program in fall of 2022. Johnson came to Rindge with nearly a decade of head coaching experience at the Division II level already under his belt, along with plenty of administrative experience as well. Johnson owns a 87-75-15 record (.534 winning percentage) over 177 games as a collegiate head coach, including 11-5-4 (.650) over 20 games at Franklin Pierce.
In his first full season at the helm of the Ravens, Johnson guided the team to a 9-4-4 record and a quarterfinal berth in the Northeast-10 Conference Championship. Jasmine Perez-Acosta, Aino Martikainen and Viridian Vazquez Kloss all earned both All-East Region and All-NE10 accolades for their work on the field. Vazquez Kloss went on to earn Academic All-America Third Team honors from CoSIDA and was the Class of 2022 valedictorian.
Johnson's first season with the crimson and grey was an abbreviated, three-game (2-1-0) campaign held in the spring of the 2020-21 academic year, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
No stranger to the Northeast-10 Conference, Johnson spent 15-plus years at American International College prior to heading for the Granite State, including an eight-season stint as head coach of the Yellow Jackets’ women’s soccer program from 2005 through 2013. While at AIC, Johnson took Springfield’s “City of Progress” moniker to heart, as he took one of Division II’s more moribund programs -- they were 13-67-2 the five years prior to his arrival -- and turned it into a national contender. He was named NE10 Coach of the Year in 2010 and 2012, and added East Region Coach of the Year honors in 2012. He steered the Yellow Jackets to NCAA Championship appearances in 2010, 2012 and 2013, the latter of which included a run all the way to the national semifinal. Johnson brought a 76-70-11 career record with him to Franklin Pierce. He went 52-23-7 over his final four seasons at the helm of the Yellow Jackets.
Johnson also brought extensive experience outside of soccer with him to his post at Franklin Pierce. In addition to his time as women’s soccer coach, he served as Assistant Athletic Director for Compliance at AIC beginning with his hire in 2005. Johnson was elevated to Associate Athletic Director status in 2011 and then took over the big chair in July of 2014, when he was promoted to Director of Athletics. He spent six years in the AD position before electing to return to the coaching ranks. From January of 2020 through his departure from the College, Johnson served as AIC’s Senior Associate Athletic Director for Finance, as well as the head coach of both the men’s and women’s golf teams.
Originally from Holyoke, Mass., Johnson is a 2000 graduate of former NE10 member Merrimack, with a degree in finance, and was a two-time All-NE10 selection on the field for the Warriors. He later returned to his alma mater for a stint as an assistant coach after earning his master’s degree in athletic administration from Springfield College in 2004. Prior to joining AIC, Johnson spent a year at then-NE10 member Massachusetts Lowell, where he worked as the River Hawks’ External Affairs Coordinator.
Career Record (87-75-15 (.534))
Franklin Pierce (two seasons: 11-5-4 (.650) overall)
2021: 9-4-4, 6-4-3 Northeast-10^
^ Northeast-10 quarterfinalist
# Shortened season contested in spring due to COVID-19 pandemic
American International (nine seasons: 76-70-11 (.519) overall, 48-58-10 (.457) in Northeast-10)
2013: 18-3-2, 11-1-2 Northeast-10~&
2012: 13-4-2, 12-1-2 Northeast-10*%
2011: 7-9-2, 6-7-2 Northeast-10
2010: 14-7-1, 9-5-1 Northeast-10%
2009: 7-10-2, 4-9-2 Northeast-10
2008: 9-9-1, 4-9-1 Northeast-10
2007: 7-13-0, 2-12-0 Northeast-10
2006: 1-15-1, 0-14-0 Northeast-10
* Northeast-10 regular season champion
~ NCAA semifinalist
% NCAA Championship participant
& Set program record for wins