Ardura to take reins of Big Red girls soccer

After two seasons as an assistant, current co-head coach will start his new appointment in the fall of 2024.

Brian Muldoon
October 9, 2023
Phillips Exeter Academy Soccer

Diego Ardura will be the head coach of the girls varsity soccer program, effective at the end of the season, the Exeter Athletics Department announced. Ardura, who currently serves as co-head coach of the program alongside Alexa Caldwell, served as an assistant with the program for two years before being named co-head coach and, now, head coach of the program.

“Coach Diego demonstrates a superb ability to connect with, challenge, and educate students,” said Director of Physical Education and Athletics Jason Baseden. “He is passionate, excitable, and incredibly knowledgeable about the sport, he is an impact-maker on our campus, and we’re looking forward to him continuing to work with our students and leaving his mark on the program.”

Ardura arrived on campus in 2019 and serves as an instructor in the Modern Languages Department. Prior to Exeter, Ardura taught and coached soccer at the Hotchkiss School.

“I am both humbled and very excited to be named as head coach of the girls varsity soccer program,” said Ardura. “Being a teacher and coach at Phillips Exeter is a dream come true. I have been very fortunate to work alongside and learn from great coaches like Alexa Caldwell and Kerry McBrearty. I am also thankful to Jason Baseden for his mentorship over the years.”

"It is with so much comfort that I leave the program in Diego's hands," said Caldwell, who has been at the helm of the program for seven seasons. "The program has such a bright future with his energy, enthusiasm, and knowledge of the game." 

Coach Ardura was born and raised in Spain, where he grew up playing soccer from a very young age. After a few years in his home club, he was recruited by Real Oviedo FC, a professional football academy in northern Spain. He has taught Spanish and coached varsity soccer for more than 10 years at independent schools.

“Being born and raised in Spain makes me appreciate what a unique opportunity it is to be a student-athlete even more," Ardura said. "Our girls varsity soccer team wants to be the type of program that has very curious, academically motivated students who love playing soccer and competing. I strongly believe that being a great student makes you a better soccer player, and vice versa.”

In addition to coaching for Big Red, Ardura also coaches at Seacoast United FC and holds a USSF National C Coaching License and an Advanced National Diploma. He lives on campus with his wife, Dr. Joyce, and his three children, Anna Valeria, Sofía and Mateo.