Avram Allen is making a big move without having to leave Northeast Georgia.
It does, however, involve a change in the level of his soccer coaching, which is exciting for the 34-year-old.
On Monday, Allen was tabbed as the new girls soccer coach at Gainesville High.
“It is awesome,” Allen said. “It is a different chamber. It is something new. I am excited for this new challenge.”
Allen takes the position previously held by Rick Howard.
In 2021, the Lady Red Elephants finished with a 7-10 mark.
However, the new Gainesville coach is ready for the challenge with its program that plays in a stacked Region 6-7A against six public schools in Forsyth County.
Previously, Allen was assistant men’s soccer coach for seven seasons at the University of North Georgia. Allen played for the Nighthawks his final two years of college, earning All-Peach Belt Conference honors, after spending his first two years at Young Harris College.
With Gainesville, Allen is eager to put in the work getting to know his players and build a winning culture.
“It will take time and patience,” Allen said. “It will take a culture and to believe.”
Gainesville High athletics director Adam Lindsey feels that Allen’s experience and energy is just what the Lady Red Elephants’ soccer program needs to get back on track.
“We are excited to add coach Allen and his family to Red Elephants Nation,” Lindsey said in a statement. “His playing and coaching experience at the collegiate level, as well as his dedication to developing youth soccer players, makes him the perfect choice to bring our girls’ soccer program back to prominence.”
Allen has previously worked as girls director of coaching with the Lanier Soccer Academy in Gainesville.
When looking for a new coach for the girls soccer program, Lindsey went to Brenau University coach Mike Lochstampfor to see if he would refer anyone for the position.
That’s when Allen’s name entered the picture.
The new Gainesville coach didn’t originally express interest in the position, but became more open to it after conversations with Lindsey.
“He didn’t make me feel forced (in taking the position),” Allen said. “He gave me that feeling of support every coach needs.”
His family also played a big part in the decision.
“It helps balance family time,” Allen said. “It is a win-win situation.”
Allen, who is originally from Kingston, New York, was a three-sport standout in soccer, football and basketball at Fannin County High.
At Young Harris, Allen was a two-time All-Region selection.
Then, he moved on to continued playing success in the midfield for North Georgia.