FC Alliance coaches rejoice as former players reach NCAA pinnacle
When Notre Dame claimed their first NCAA national championship in men's soccer with a 2-1 win over Maryland, there was a piece of FC Alliance attached to the trophy. Brothers Luke and Mark Mishu, both raised through club soccer by FC Alliance coaches, were a part of an amazing run through the NCAA tournament by the Fighting Irish. Luke, a senior starter, made several huge defensive plays in the championship game to catapult his team to victory.
It was a thrilling game, engrossing a national audience on ESPNU, as Notre Dame used a punishing defense and timely finishing to claim the crown. Luke was cited numerous times by the ESPN announcers for making key tackles in front of his own goal, as well as his fast counter attacks down the right wing.
The Mishu brothers followed similar paths to Notre Dame. They both played for the same FC Alliance coaches (Leander and Craven), and they both were stars at Catholic High School. Luke was the subject of a huge recruiting battle between Indiana, Princeton and Notre Dame, while Mark focused early on signing with the Fighting Irish. Along the way, they racked up numerous state championships in club soccer.
"We couldn't be any prouder than we are of Luke and Mark," said FC Alliance Director of Coaching Josh Gray. "They both started and finished their careers with FC Alliance coaches, and they embody everything you want players to become. They're both skillful, intelligent, and have an unparalleled passion for the game."
Mark originally began with Little Brazil (94 Boys Black), and finished with 95 Boys Black. Luke, who signed with Notre Dame before the rise of FC Alliance, played at several different clubs, although eight of those years were with coaches who eventually joined FC Alliance.