Bangor High School head coach Andrew Varisco coaches from the sidelines during a Sept. 9, 2022, varsity girl's soccer match against Camden Hills at Cameron Stadium in Bangor, Maine. Credit: Kim Higgins / BDN

Bangor High School will be looking for a new girls soccer coach after declining to renew Andrew Varisco’s contract.

Varisco produced a record of 35-9-6 during his four seasons with the Rams after replacing Joe Johnson, who led Bangor to five Class A North championships and state titles in 2011 and 2015. The COVID-19 pandemic wiped out one of Varisco’s four seasons.

Bangor did not win a Class A North title under Varisco, but the Rams reached the championship game in 2021 before losing to Brunswick 2-1 in overtime. Top-seed Bangor took a 16-0 record into the title game against Brunswick.

This past fall, Bangor went 9-1-4 and earned the second seed. The Rams beat No. 7 Oxford Hills of South Paris 2-0 in the quarterfinals but lost to No. 3 Camden Hills of Rockport 3-1 in the semis.

In his first season, Varisco led the Rams to a 7-5-2 regular season but the sixth-seeded Rams upset No. 3 Mt. Ararat of Topsham in the quarterfinals and beat No. 2 Brunswick 2-0 in the semis before losing to the No. 1 eventual state champion Camden Hills 1-0 in the regional final.

Bangor High School athletic director Steve Vanidestine thanked Varisco for his treatment of the players and said he should keep coaching, but he said the school needed “change how we operate to achieve the level of excellence that has been our tradition.”

“Our girls soccer team has been one of our most successful programs over the past two decades,” he said. “Expectations are high and winning is important. The goal every year is to advance to the final round in the playoffs and add a banner in the Red Barry Gym.

Varisco, who is in the special education department at Bangor High, said he “really enjoyed” his four seasons coaching the team, noting the challenges of dealing with the pandemic.

“I love working with young people and helping them develop as athletes and grow into leaders,” he said. “Hopefully, I had a positive impact on them.”

He said he would be open to getting back into coaching sometime, but that he is evaluating whether he wants to do that now or later.