Local soccer NPSL

Greater Lowell hires Webster native Simonis as new coach

Greater Lowell FC in the NPSL has a new head coach, and just like at inter-Commonweath rival Boston City FC, it’s a former player taking the reins.

Rough Diamonds owner Andrea Gauntlett told BayStateSoccerSentinel.com that former Greater Lowell striker Jacob Simonis, a Webster, Mass. native who played for the club in 2017, will be the gaffer of the club starting this season.

“He was very well liked and got along with everyone,” Gauntlett wrote in an email to BSSS Thursday morning. “He’s an unassuming individual with a tremendous work ethic.”

“My purpose of joining (Greater Lowell) is to demonstrate discipline, character, respect, and excellence with everything I do,” Simonis said in a club statement, “(and) be able to contribute to the winning culture of the club. I also excel to make an impact as a professional to this team with my hard work and determination. As a player, I am focused and know the strengths I have but continue to develop to become a stronger player. The biggest strength is the size I have. You can’t teach size.”

The 22-year-old Simonis, who was a Southern Worcester County League All-Star as well as a Worcester Telegram All-Star at Bartlett High School in his hometown of Webster, attended Division 2 Coker University in South Carolina before he returned north. He went on to play in the Professional Development League — now USL League Two — before coming to Greater Lowell in midseason 2017. The following year, he played with the Portland Timbers U23 squad.

With Greater Lowell, he scored goals, three of which on headers, in seven games in 2017.

Simonis is the second former player to become coach of his old local club this month: on Feb. 9, Boston City named Gabriel de Souza, a former Lions center back, as its new coach.

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