Colorado Springs, Colo. (July 1, 2019) — USA Ultimate announced today the three head coaches that will lead the U.S. National Team at the WFDF 2020 World Ultimate and Guts Championships (WUGC).
Martin Aguilera (Atlanta, Ga.) was named head coach of the mixed team, Matty Tsang (Oakland, Calif.) will lead the women’s team, and Ben Van Heuvelen (Brooklyn, N.Y.) will coach the men’s team.
Aguilera returns to the U.S. National Team program after leading the U-24 mixed team to three consecutive world titles in 2018, 2015 and 2013.
He also coaches Ozone, the elite-level women’s club team in Atlanta, and serves on the coaching staff of Paideia High School. A former athlete on various mixed division club teams, Aguilera’s résumé also includes coaching positions with the Georgia Tech men’s team and Emory University women’s team.
Tsang returns to the WUGC sidelines where he led the women’s team to a world title in 2016 and a silver medal in 2012.
One of the most successful coaches in ultimate history, Tsang also lists a pair of gold medals as an assistant coach of the World Games team (2017, ’13) among his accolades. He is also a nine-time USA Ultimate National Champion, leading San Francisco Fury on a run of seven consecutive titles from 2006 to 2012 before adding two more in 2017 and 2018. Tsang also won a World Ultimate Club Championships title with Fury in 2010.
A familiar face to the U.S. National Team program, Van Heuvelen earns his seventh coaching appointment and his first as head coach of a WUGC team.
In 2016, Van Heuvelen served as an assistant coach for the U.S. National Team at WUGC, helping lead the men’s squad to a gold medal. He also coached the U-20 National Team to five consecutive world titles in the men’s division of the World Junior Ultimate Championships, first as an assistant in 2004 and 2006, and then as a head coach in 2008, 2010 and 2012.
Last fall, Van Heuvelen led his New York-based club team, PoNY, to its first national title.
He is also a two-time world champion as an athlete on both ends of the age spectrum: as a member of the U-20 National Team in 1998, and as a member of the masters men’s team at the 2017 World Championships of Beach Ultimate.
The WFDF 2020 World Ultimate and Guts Championships will be held July 11-18 in Leeuwarden, Netherlands.
The U.S. will enter the tournament as defending champions in all three competitive divisions – mixed, women’s and men’s.
The announcement of the three head coaches also marks the start of the application process for assistant coaches.
USA Ultimate will appoint six assistants (two per team) to fill out the coaching staff. Applications are due July 15, 2019. For more information, click here.
Applications for athletes interested in trying out for the U.S. National Team will be available later this fall. For eligibility guidelines, please refer to Section VII of USA Ultimate’s Triple Crown Tour Guidelines.