Camp Director, Head Men's Coach - Creighton University
Two-time National Player of the Year and Creighton Athletics Hall of Fame selection Johnny Torres completed his 12th season as an assistant coach on the Bluejay coaching staff in 2018, following a decade-long professional soccer career. Arguably the greatest soccer player in Creighton and Missouri Valley Conference history, Torres played for the Bluejays from 1994-97.
He was named head coach of the Creighton program on November 12, 2018, replacing Elmar Bolowich at the helm of the Bluejays.
Torres claimed the National Assistant Coach of the Year honor from the National Soccer Coaches Association of America in January 2012. He was also named the NSCAA Midwest Region Assistant Coach of the Year recognition after the 2011 and 2012 seasons and Great Lakes Region Assistant Coach of the Year in 2015.
Torres, a member of the 2018 BIG EAST Coaching Staff of the Year, assisted the Bluejays to the conference regular-season title. A total of five players were selected to the all-conference teams, and both Sven Koenig (Offensive Player of the Year) and Joel Rydstrand (Midfielder of the Year) garnered major awards.
Torres helped lead the Bluejays to the most wins in Division I (19) during the 2015 season as Creighton had four players selected in the 2016 MLS SuperDraft. The Bluejays started the season 15-0-0, the program’s best start since 1993, and finished the year with the third-best offense in Division I.
A member of the 2014 BIG EAST Co-Coaching Staff of the Year, Torres helped lead the Bluejays to the nation’s best winning percentage at 16-3-3 (.795). Creighton won its first BIG EAST regular season title with a 7-1-1 mark in just the second year in the conference and advanced to its third NCAA quarterfinal appearance in four seasons. Three CU players earned spots on NSCAA All-America squads and four earned unanimous All-BIG EAST selections and two major awards.
In 2013, he aided the Jays through their inaugural season in the BIG EAST Conference and a tough non-conference slate. Creighton finished the season with a 9-9-2 overall record and a 4-4-1 mark in league play. Seven Bluejays claimed spots on 2013 All-BIG EAST Teams. Eric Miller and Zach Barnes claimed NSCAA All-Great Lakes Region honors and later were drafted in the 2014 MLS SuperDraft.
He helped direct the Bluejays to a 17-4-3 record and their second consecutive appearance in a College Cup In 2012. Creighton won the Missouri Valley Conference regular-season and tournament titles for a second straight season. Along the way, the Bluejays tied the MVC record for the fewest goals allowed (1) in a Valley season set by CU in 2011. CU entered the 2012 College Cup on a 14-match unbeaten streak before falling 1-0 to eventual national champion Indiana in a semifinal.
Three times in Torres’ first five seasons on the Bluejay bench, the Creighton men’s soccer staff was honored as the MVC Coaching Staff of the Year, earning the nod in 2008, 2010 and 2011. His roles on the coaching staff include scouting, recruiting and training.
He also plays a major role in working with student-athletes on service projects in the Omaha area.
Torres himself has always been active in service throughout his collegiate and professional playing days. He visited thousands of youth in the Omaha community in the 1990s. Torres was tabbed the Children’s Miracle Network National “Hometown Hero” in 1996. A native of Medellin, Colombia, he was honored by the Omaha City Council with “Johnny Torres Day” on Oct. 27, 1996, in recognition of earning U.S. Citizenship just days before, his community service and his soccer skills.
Torres was named to the MVC All-Centennial Team in 2006 and in 2011 he became the first men’s soccer player inducted into the Missouri Valley Conference Hall of Fame. In 1997 he won both the Hermann Trophy and the Missouri Athletic Club Award (prior to the combination of the awards), recognizing him as the National Player of the Year. In 1996, he earned National Player of the Year honors from Soccer America after leading the Bluejays to their first College Cup appearance. When his career ended, he was the Valley’s all-time scoring (128 points) and assists (36) leader.
He was the fifth overall pick in the first round of the 1998 MLS Draft by the New England Revolution, and played for the Revolution for four seasons. He also played for the Miami Fusion and Chicago Fire of Major League Soccer, before continuing his career in the USL for the Minnesota Thunder and the Milwaukee Wave United, before moving to indoor soccer with the Milwaukee Wave. In 2010, Torres returned to the professional ranks as a player, leading the Omaha Vipers of the Major Indoor Soccer League in goals scored. In 2009, he played on the United States Adult Soccer Association Over 30 championship team – Nebraska 402 – which qualified and participated in the U.S. Open Cup in 2009.
Torres returned to the Creighton campus in the fall of 2007 to complete his undergraduate degree while serving as the Bluejays’ undergraduate manager. After receiving the NCAA Degree Completion Award, he earned his degree in social work from Creighton in the spring of 2008.
The 2004 Creighton Athletics Hall of Fame inductee and two-time First Team All-American selection has two sons, Dominic and Javi, and a daughter, Perla. Torres married Sara Heck in 2013.
Camp Coach, Assistant Men's Coach - Creighton University
Former Bluejay goalkeeper Michael Gabb completed his third season as Creighton’s goalkeeping coach. Gabb returned to Omaha to take over as an assistant for the Creighton men’s soccer team prior to the 2016 season.
A member of the 2018 BIG EAST Coaching Staff of the Year, Gabb helped guide freshman Paul Kruse to All-BIG EAST Second Team and unanimous All-Conference freshman team accolades. Kruse held a 0.64 goals against average while playing every minute of his freshman season, which ranks fifth-best in program history and second-best for a Bluejay freshman (1,000 minutes minimum). He also recorded seven shutouts and 52 saves.
The 2017 Bluejay squad posted seven shutouts and held opponents to one goal or less a total of 10 times.
Gabb helped Alex Kapp earn NSCAA All-America and BIG EAST Co-Goalkeeper of the Year honors following the 2016 season as the senior transfer tallied seven shutouts and a 0.84 goals against average during his only season at Creighton. Atlanta United FC drafted Kapp during fourth round of the 2017 MLS Draft.
As a player, Gabb spent five seasons with the Bluejays from 1998-2002 while playing for Bret Simon (1998-2000) and Bob Warming (2001-02). In 2007 he returned to his alma mater and spent one season as an assistant under Warming.
Prior to returning to Omaha, Gabb served as the director of goalkeeping at the Colorado Rush Soccer Club for five years, and spent two seasons as the goalkeeper coach for Metropolitan State University in Denver. He helped guide the Roadrunners to a 13-4-2 record and 1.12 goals against average in 2015.
He also spent two seasons as a graduate assistant coach for the men’s and women’s soccer programs at Winthrop University in 2005-06. Additionally, he served as Director of Coaching at the Discoveries Soccer Club while attending school in Rock Hill, S.C.
Gabb earned his master’s in business and leadership from Winthrop in 2007.
He is no stranger to working in the Omaha community. Prior to his time with the Eagles, Gabb served as an assistant coach at Bellevue University. He also served as the supervisor of the Millard Soccer Center, the Arsenal Soccer Club goalkeeping director and founded and directed the Nebraska Goalkeeping Academy.
During his collegiate playing career, Gabb helped lead the Bluejays to the College Cup twice, including the 2000 College Cup Final. In 2000, he set school records with 2,279 minutes in goal and 21 victories, while playing for Simon. The Bluejays won a program-best 22 matches during the 2000 season.
As a senior (2002), Gabb played every minute in goal, and led Creighton to its second College Cup appearance in three seasons. He earned Second Team All-MVC honors after accumulating a 0.96 goals against average and an 18-4-2 record.
Gabb owns the fourth-most wins (41) all-time as a Creighton goalkeeper and the second-best winning percentage (.802).
The Bluejays won three Missouri Valley Conference tournament championships and made it to the NCAA Tournament each season during his time as a player.
Following graduation from Creighton in 2002, Gabb played professionally with the Syracuse Salty Dogs in the United Soccer League for one season.
An Omaha native, Gabb earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology with a minor in business from Creighton in 2002. Gabb and his wife Bethany have two children, Jackson and Asher.
Camp Coach, Volunteer Assistant Men's Coach - Creighton University
The 2018 season marked Mitch Kavanagh's first as a volunteer assistant for the Creighton men's soccer program. A part of the BIG EAST Coaching Staff of the Year, the Bluejays claimed their first BIG EAST regular-season title since 2014.
Kavanagh spent three seasons as an assistant coach at Bellevue University before shifting to the Bluejays' program. The bruins won the North Star Athletic Conference Title in all three seasons 2015,2016 &2017 while Kavanagh was there. The Bruins also won the North Star Athletic Conference Tournament Title, 2015, 2016, and advanced to NAIA National Tournament Sweet 16 in 2015. Kavanagh played for the Bruins in 2012 and 2013, and earned first team all-conference honors in 2012 and appeared in 31 games during his career as a defender.
Kavanagh has played a big role in youth soccer in NE where he has worked in the NE ODP Program since 2012. In that time he has acted as Interim Director, and is now the assistant director of NE ODP. Kavanagh has been a big part of recognizing the elite talent in NE, and helping them represent at Regional, and National ID camps. Additionally, he has also been working on the USYS Regional II staff. He currently the assistant director of coaching at Gretna soccer club, and was awarded the 2018 NE competitive coach of the year award. He worked with Westside HS for 4 seasons winning 3 Metro tournaments, a two time class a runner up, and was awarded Westside Assistant coach of the year in 2017.
Kavanagh earned a bachelor’s degree in Health, & Human performance in 2014. He then went on to further his education and completed his master’s degree in human services with an emphasis in leadership in 2017 from Bellevue University. Kavanagh also has racked up several licenses over the years from different affiliations including the English FA, USSF, and United Coaches. Mitch and his wife Kayla have one child, Makenna.
Assistant Athletic Trainer - Creighton University
Aaron Haselhorst begins his third year with Creighton University as an assistant athletic trainer in 2017-19. His primary sport coverage is with the men’s soccer.
Prior to his time at Creighton University he served as a graduate assistant athletic trainer at Eastern Illinois University from 2006-2008. He was then hired on as an assistant athletic trainer for four years at EIU before transitioning into the head athletic trainer role for his final two years. While at Eastern Illinois University he covered a variety of men’s and women’s athletic teams. Also, in the summer and fall of 2007 he performed an internship with the New England Patriots.
Aaron earned his Bachelor of Science degree with an Emphasis in Athletic Training from the University of Nebraska at Omaha in 2006 and his Master of Science Degree from Eastern Illinois University in 2008. He is a preceptor for the University of Nebraska at Omaha Athletic Training Education Program as well as certified as a professional rescuer with the American Red Cross. Aaron is a certified member of the National Athletic Trainers Association.
Aaron is originally from Norfolk, Nebraska, and now resides in the Omaha.