Loyola’s Cross Country Coach Al Seither To Retire

Posted: March 4, 2008 for Cross Country and Track

New Orleans, La. – After five years as Loyola University New Orleans head cross country and track coach, Al Seither announced his retirement today effective after the track season.


In his first year, Seither led the Wolfpack women to the 2003 GCAC and NAIA Region XIII Team Championships as well as an appearance in the NAIA National Championships. That same season on the men’s side, Seither coached Michael Gulotta and Matt Cagigal to appearances in the NAIA’s national meet.


In 2004, Seither led both the Wolfpack men’s and women’s teams to the GCAC Championships. Loyola also qualified Richard Bouckaert, Matt Cagigal, Natalie Sargent, and Mary Erin Imwalle for the 2004 NAIA National Championships.


After seeing the 2005 season canceled due to hurricane Katrina, Seither oversaw impressive results for the Wolfpack in 2006. Cagigal captured the GCAC Men’s Individual Championship with Bouckaert finishing second in the meet. On the women’s side, Loyola’s Imwalle took the women’s individual title. Each qualified for the 2006 NAIA National Championships.


During his tenure, Seither was named GCAC Coach of the Year in 2003 and 2004. In 2003, he was also named NAIA Region XIII Coach of the Year and was honored by the United States Track and Field Association for the Wolfpack’s accomplishments in 2003. The Louisiana Sports Writers’ Association named him Louisiana Coach of the Year in 2003.


Prior to Loyola, Seither was the head coach at Holy Cross High School for more than 30 years, where he started one of the first cross country teams in the area in 1971. Seither coached numerous state champions and many runners who went on to compete at the NCAA Division I level.


Before his 30 plus years with the Holy Cross Tigers, Seither a four-year letter winner as a quarter and a half miler at Southeastern Louisiana University. After graduation, he served as an assistant track coach for the Lions.


Seither was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Louisiana Track Coaches’ Association in 2003 and was instrumental in the growth of the sport at the high school level in New Orleans.


Prior to Katrina, Seither and his wife of 39 years, Erin, lived in Chalmette. After the storm the couple moved to the Northshore. The couple has one son, Steven, and four grandchildren.


The search for a new coach will begin immediately.


Comments from Coach Al Seither: “I want to thank the administration at Loyola for giving me the opportunity to coach at the collegiate level at such a fine institution. It was a joy to work with talented, enthusiastic, and mature student athletes who represented the University well and made my experience here quite satisfying. I want to extend my gratitude to Dr. Giorlando, the athletic staff as well as the entire university community for their support during my time at Loyola. I will look back on it with fondness.”


Comments from Athletic Director, Dr. Michael Giorlando: “We are extremely grateful for Al’s dedication and years of service. He is an excellent coach as whose teams and individuals achieved great things for Loyola over the years. I want to personally thank Al for helping this program and seeing the cross country and track program through our recovery from hurricane Katrina.”