Radames "Rod" Lafaurie is in his 10th year as the Occidental College men's soccer team's head coach.
The men's soccer team concluded another strong 2018 season, finishing the season at 14-6 overall, with a 10-4 conference record. In addition to winning the conference semi-final away from home and then hosting the SCIAC postseason tournament final as the highest remaining seed, the team also led the conference in several categories and had a chance to win the regular season title on the last day of the season.
On the season, the Tigers scored an amazing 46 goals in 20 games, easily outpacing the entire conference with the next closest team scoring 34 goals, while the Tigers also dominated on the defensive side of the ball, allowing the second least amount of goals per game, displaying the best balance of any SCIAC team with the largest goal differential. The high powered team also led the league in points, corner kicks, and assists, while being among the stingiest on the defensive side of the ball, allowing the second least amount of shots and the second fewest goals per game.
In addition to a statistically fantastic season, the Tigers led the conference with the most All-SCIAC players, with 8 total, in addition to the SCIAC Conference Player of the Year, Liam Walsh. The Washington DC native led the conference by a wide margin in points and goals, with an incredible 15 goals in 14 SCIAC games (17 goals and 37 points overall), individually dominating all other players in the league. In addition to his individual accolades, he was named 1st Team All-Region by the United Soccer Coaches Association at the end of the season. The economics major had a hat-trick with three goals at Redlands and another with four goals at Caltech. He scored more goals in SCIAC than both Cal Lutheran and Caltech and set both Oxy's single-season goals mark (17) and career goals mark (31). Joining him on the First Team All-SCIAC team was Junior Riley McCabe, the towering 6'5 Center back from Lincoln, Mass., who was a force on defense for the Tigers, on top of playing outstanding defense, he also scored three goals and had two assists. The other six All-SCIAC players were seniors Ethan Glass, Matthew Labrie, Ariel Rosso, along with Junior Benjamin Simon, and sophomores Scott Drazan and Nate Dunning.
Wrapping up another record-breaking season, coach Lafaurie has solidified the Tiger as one of the top SCIAC men's soccer teams who is now considered among the best in the entire Western Region. In 2019, the program will look to continue to break more barriers with an exciting blend of high-powered offense and solid defending throughout the year.
2017 included another winning season for the Men’s Soccer Program, along with another All-Region Accolade for Senior Gabriel Barrett Jackson. Along with his United Soccer Coaches All-Region nod, Barrett-Jackson was named First Team All Sciac for the third time in his career. Joining him on the First Team was Senior Santiago Bedoya as well as Second Team Nominee, Junior Liam Walsh. Walsh led the team in goals and was in the top 10 in goals and points in the SCIAC. In goal, Oxy used three goalkeepers, after Alex Bonomi’s season ending injury 3 games into the season. Both Dante Amodeo and Scott Drazan played well between the pipes to ensure that Oxy was still in the top three in goals against while giving up the least amount of shots in the conference. In a slight break from tradition, they did not lead in nearly every offensive category turning their attention to the other side of the ball.
2016 was a reloading season, with the Tigers finishing 8-10-1 and narrowly missing the SCIAC tournament, being eliminated on the last day of the regular season. Finishing his outstanding career, Morgan Bennett-Smith was named 1st Team All-Sciac for the third consecutive season while juniors Tod Kawada and Gabriel Barrett-Jackson landed on the 2nd Team.
2015 was another banner year for the program finishing the regular season at 13-3-3 and outscoring opponents 54-9 in the process. The team found its way in the top 25 during the season and was the highest ranked SCIAC team for most of the season. In the final computer rankings Oxy finished with the highest SCIAC ranking as it finished #29 out of 406 teams in Division III. Collectively the program set the program record for shutouts on the year with 12, goals against average at .58 per game, win percentage at .725, placed 8 All Conference Players, including the Goalkeeper Year, and Brine Award Winner of Distinction. The high-powered offense averaged nearly three goals a game while only allowing on average half goal per game. Despite losing Sophomore All-Region Forward Tod Kawada to an early season injury, the team’s potent offense continued to shine again outscoring all SCIAC opponents. Morgan Bennet-Smith, a junior forward from Sacramento, earns Frist Team honors for the second consecutive year after leading the Tigers in goals scored with eight and total points with 21. Senior Forward Connor Freeman makes the SCIAC Second team as a forward in back-to-back seasons. Freeman was third on the team in goals with five and had two assists. Senior Midfielders Zack Conrad and Valdair Martins Lopes earned First and Second Team honors for their contributions to the Oxy midfield engine. On the defensive side of the ball Gabriel Barrett-Jackson, a sophomore from Seattle, earns All-SCIAC honors as a defender. Barrett-Jackson, who was named Oxy's Defensive MVP last season. Theo Atkinson, nominated for All-American awards after finishing fourth in Goals Against Average and Second in Save percentage in the country won the goalkeeper of the year award in his senior campaign. First year Liam Walsh makes the All-SCIAC team in his debut season with the Tigers. The defender from Washington DC, is the only first year from the conference to be named All-SCIAC. Keegan McChesney, a senior from Seattle, was given the Brine Award of Distinction for his service on an off the field. The award is given to well-rounded student athletes and considers community service, sportsmanship, academic success, and on field performance.
In 2014, he continued the upward trajectory of the program to lead the Tigers to a 13-6-1 overall record and 10-5-1 SCIAC finish. Oxy was just two points away from winning the SCIAC Championship and made the SCIAC Postseason tournament for the first time in program history. The Tigers played a high-scoring brand of soccer, netting 43 goals in 20 games. At the conclusion of the season, forwards Tod Kawada and Morgan Bennett Smith were named 1st Team All SCIAC. Kawada was also named a Third Team NSCAA All-West Region selection.
During the 2012 season, he led the men's soccer team to its first winning season since 1988 and the program received an NSCAA Academic award. Additionally, Senior Reid Sakamoto was selected to the NSCAA All-Region Second Team.
A former soccer standout at Mater Dei High School in Santa Ana, Calif. he contributed to two CIF championships teams. As a club player, he guided his teams to two Coast Soccer League Premier titles and two Surf Cup Super Group tournament wins before he continued his soccer career at Cal State University, Northridge, a Division I member of the Big West. During his four-year career Lafaurie amassed the record for most wins as a goalkeeper in program history, helping the team to perennial top-25 national rankings while consistently participating in the post-season play. Lafaurie was named the 2003 Cal State Northridge Male Scholar Athlete of the Year for the Matadors as well as Second Team All-Big West member.
After capping off his collegiate career, earning a Bachelor of Arts in History and Communications in 2005, Lafaurie went on to train with the Los Angeles Galaxy as a reserve for a season under Steve Sampson and followed up with a two-year stint in the Premier Development League (PDL). Simultaneously, while playing professional soccer, Lafaurie completed master’s degree coursework in History from CSUN in 2007.
Called one of the finest up and coming coaches in the country, he works with the Region IV Olympic Development Program as a staff coach and previously as a Nevada ODP Head Coach for the Boys Program. Rod currently holds a United States Soccer Federation "A" coaching license and United Soccer Coaches Premier License. Rod also serves as the Academy Director at LA Surf in charge of all elite programing for the largest club in greater Los Angeles. Rod and his wife Graziella live in La Crescenta with their son and daughter.