A three-time American Athletic Conference Coach of the Year, Roberts Sahaydak has wasted no time in putting her stamp on UCF's successful program. Under her guidance, the Knights have earned four NCAA Tournament bids and four American Athletic Conference championships while boasting 11 conference Player of the Year awards and 38 all-league and tournament selections.
In 2017, Roberts Sahaydak coached the Knights to a 13-2-3 record, the most wins since the 2014 campaign. UCF climbed as climbed as high as No. 6 and finished the regular season ranked eighth. The Knights posted a 16-match unbeaten streak, the longest since the 2013 campaign, captured the American Athletic Conference regular season championship and made their 21st NCAA Tournament appearance.
Under Roberts Sahaydak's tutelage, five members of the team received All-Southeast Region recognition and goalkeeper Vera Varis was named to the United Soccer Coaches Association All-American Third Team. In addition, five of her starters were recognized as American Athletic Conference Players of the Year, including Morgan Ferrara (Offensive), Kathellen Sousa (Co-Defensive), Vera Varis (Goalkeeper), Kayla Adamek (Midfielder), and Dina Orschmann (Rookie). A total of seven Knights were placed on the All-American Athletic Conference Teams, and three were recognized on the all-tournament team.
In 2016, four student-athletes were named to the All-American Athletic Conference Teams. Saga Fredriksson was named to the All-Northeast Region Team and recognized as the American Athletic Conference Co-Defensive Player of the Year. Off the field, the Knights earned recognition for their academic success as they received the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) Team Academic Award.
Roberts Sahaydak tackled the 2015 season with team that featured more newcomers (14) than returners (12) and lost three key members due to injury for the year before the season-opening weekend was in the books. Eight of their starters, including their American Athletic Conference Offensive Player, Defensive Player and Goalkeeper of the Year, had moved on from the year before. But the Knights earned a berth to their ninth-straight NCAA Tournament (20th overall) and nabbed a hosting gig for the first round for the fifth straight season. In addition, Carol Rodrigues was named the American's Co-Offensive Player of the Year.
In 2014, she guided the Knights to their second NCAA Sweet 16 appearance in four years and the American regular season title. Under her direction, three Knights were recognized as conference Players of the Year: Tatiana Coleman (Co-Offensive); Carleigh Wiliams (Defensive); and Connie Organ (Goalkeeper). UCF posted its first undefeated home slate (11-0) since 1999, matched the school record for wins in a season (18) and was nationally ranked through much of the year.
In her first season (2013), she led UCF to a school-record unbeaten streak (18 matches), an NSCAA national standing through much of the year and the program's first undefeated conference season since 1999. In addition, UCF made history as the first program to win an American Athletic Conference Championship. Roberts Sahaydak came to Orlando after serving six seasons at VCU alongside her co-head coach, husband and current UCF associate head coach Tim Sahaydak.
Roberts Sahaydak spent a decade with the U.S. National Team from 1994-2004, earning 110 caps (with 60 starts). Her career was highlighted by three women's World Cups - among them, the unforgettable 1999 championship - and a gold medal with the 1996 Olympic team.After retiring from the USWNT, she has served as an ambassador for U.S. Soccer with the U.S. Department of State Sports Envoy Program since 2007, promoting the power and benefit of sport internationally. With the program, she has visited Indonesia, Uganda, the Philippines, Thailand, Namibia, Brazil and France. In 2014, she was appointed to President Barack Obama's Presidential Delegation to the Federative Republic of Brazil at the opening of the FIFA World Cup in Brazil.
She is a native of San Ramon, Calif., and was selected as the 1994 California High School Player of the Year. She was a three-time Parade High School All-American, a three-time NSCAA All-American and was the two-time National Girl's High School Player of the Year.
She debuted for the Stars and Stripes in 1994 when she was only 16 as one of the youngest players ever to suit up for the National Team. She played in her first FIFA Women's World Cup a month after her 18th birthday and won Olympic gold before she was out of her teens (USSoccer.com).
As a collegian, Roberts Sahaydak was a standout midfielder for North Carolina (1995-98) as a three-time All-ACC First Team selection. She led the Tar Heels to two NCAA titles (1996, 1997) during her tenure, was voted the 1998 ACC Tournament MVP and finished third in voting for collegiate soccer's highest honor, the Hermann Trophy. She still ranks among the top five for career starts in UNC's record book.
She was a two-time captain for the Carolina Courage in the first fully professional U.S. women's league (Women's United Soccer Association). She helped the Courage win the 2002 title after finishing last in the team's inaugural campaign one year prior.
Roberts Sahaydak took over VCU's program in 2007 and led the Rams to three conference championship game appearances. She was voted as the 2011 Colonial Athletic Association Co-Head Coach of the Year, along with her husband Tim. The duo mentored two CAA Defenders of the Year, one CAA Rookie of the Year and 20 all-conference players, including six first-team honorees.
The Sahaydaks reside in Orlando with their two daughters, Layla and Evie.