After guiding the 2016 Cougars to a historic season, Derek Burton returns for his 10th season as SIUE’s women’s soccer coach. He begins the season with an overall record of 70-72-21 as the Cougars’ head coach.
SIUE became the second-ever Ohio Valley Conference team to advance to the second round of the NCAA tournament when the Cougars’ ousted No. 2 national seed Notre Dame on penalty kicks to open the 2016 Women’s College Cup.
The Cougars finished the year with a 10-8-5 record, marking the third time in the last four seasons SIUE had finished with at least 10 wins in a season.
Entering the OVC Tournament as the No. 4 seed, the Cougars captured their second OVC Tournament title, advancing past Austin Peay in the quarterfinals before defeating top-seeded Murray State on its home field in the semifinal contest. SIUE shut out No. 2 seed Eastern Kentucky to claim its second OVC tournament title in three seasons.
The Cougars took on a new identity during the 2016 season, one of an offensive power. SIUE led the OVC in total points (100), goals (33), assists (34) and assists per game (1.48). The Cougars were second in the league in goals per game (1.43) and total shots (269).
Individually, Caroline Hoefert finished seventh in the OVC in scoring with 16 points coming on five goals and six assists. Her six assists were second-most in the league, while her five goals tied for 10th. Avery Anderson and Peyton Roehnelt also scored five goals and Emily Grahl tied Hoefert with six assists.
Hoefert was named the Most Outstanding Player in the OVC Tournament. Kassidy Rawdon (first team), Grahl (second team) and Roehnelt (all-newcomer team) earned All-OVC honors following the regular season.
Junior goalkeeper Juli Rossi excelled in the postseason. Rossi saved a penalty kick in two of the three OVC Tournament games, posting a shutout in the championship game. She then made eight saves in regulation against Notre Dame, and two more in the shootout preserving the shutout and propelling the Cougars to the second round. Rossi earned selection as TopDrawerSoccer.com’s National Player of the Week following the first round shutout of Notre Dame.
In four previous seasons in the OVC, Burton had developed SIUE into one of the conference’s most formidable defenses. SIUE ranked in the top three in goals allowed and goals against average in each of those four seasons and led the OVC in both categories three times. The Cougars also have led the conference in shutouts in three of four seasons between and 2012 and 2015.
SIUE missed the OVC tournament for the first time in 2015, finishing with a 5-11-3 overall record and a 2-7-1 OVC record.
Burton guided the team to an OVC regular season and tournament championship in 2014. The Cougars then made their first appearance in the NCAA Division I Tournament, playing Kentucky to a scoreless draw in the first round before bowing out on penalty kicks. The team posted a record of 13-6-2, tying the program-best for wins at the Division I level. SIUE’s 8-2 OVC record also was a program high.
Burton also oversaw the development of the program's first All-Region, Scholar All-American, and first team All-OVC performer, defender Sam Jones.
While the defense remained strong, 2013 marked an improved SIUE offense as well. The Cougars improved their scoring, from 0.74 goals a game in 2012 to 1.5 goals a game in 2013. SIUE finished second in the OVC in scoring with 4.57 points per game, and led the conference with 32 total assists.
Burton oversaw the development of a pair of strong offensive performers during the 2013 season. Senior Tory Pitts transferred to SIUE for her final season and proceeded to lead the team in scoring with 20 points, coming on seven goals and six assists. Pitts’ six helpers ranked second in the OVC while her 20 points landed her fourth in the league in scoring. Freshman Kayla Delgado scored nine goals and added an assist for 19 points, placing her fifth in the OVC scoring. Both players were honored as members of the All-OVC second team.
Burton guided the Cougars through their first season in the Ohio Valley Conference in 2011, leading SIUE to a 4-5 record in OVC play. A 1-0 win at Eastern Illinois on the final day of the season secured a sixth-place finish for the Cougars which would have earned them a spot in the OVC Championships had the team been eligible.
Burton became the fifth head coach in women's soccer program history prior to the 2008 season. In his first season, Burton quickly displayed that his teams would be aggressive and disciplined. In the team's first game under Burton, the Cougars were 3-0 winners over Indiana State on the road.
He came to SIUE with established links to St. Louis and the OVC. While playing at Vianney High School, he helped the team to a state championship in 1991 and a No. 1 national ranking by USA Today.
A four-year starter at Arkansas-Little Rock, Burton turned to coaching and developed an impressive resume beginning with one season as an assistant at UALR and two seasons as an assistant at Morehead State. He was on staff for the first two years of the OVC women’s soccer program at Morehead State.
His first head coaching assignments followed. He led Mount Senario College during the 2000-01 season and Missouri Valley College 2001-2006. Burton coached four All-American players and 14 All-America Scholar-Athlete players in five seasons at Missouri Valley. He was named the Heart of America Athletic Conference Coach of the Year in 2002. He averaged better than 10 victories in five seasons at Missouri Valley, posting a 54-28-7 record overall. He returned to NCAA Division I soccer in 2006 as an assistant at Iowa State University.
Burton earned a bachelor's in health education at Arkansas-Little Rock in 1997 and a master's in sports administration at Morehead State in 1999.
Derek and his wife Jacqueline have a daughter Fiona (13) and a son Keane (9). The family resides in Edwardsville.