John Kowalski among those named to inaugural Riverhounds Hall of Fame class


Photo credit: Sarah Gabany

Jonathan Hanna and Jonathan Hanna

PITTSBURGH — After announcing plans earlier this year for a Pittsburgh Riverhounds Hall of Fame, the Riverhounds announced the inaugural class at a season ticket holder 20th anniversary kickoff event.

The inductees are former players Justin Evans and David Flavius, founder and former owner Paul Heasley, first-ever Vice President and General Manager Dave Kasper and first-ever head coach, and now Robert Morris women’s soccer head coach John Kowalski.

John Kowalski: The first ever coach of the Riverhounds, Kowalski brought the fledgling franchise to a 26-26-4 record in two seasons. In 1999, Kowalski’s high-octane offense scored 63 goals, a record that stands to this day. Kowalski is now the coach of the Robert Morris women’s soccer team. Kowalski also had a semi-productive career as the manager of the United States, with a 2-0-1 record in 1991.

Through his 18-year career with the Colonials, Kowalski holds a 106-210-22 record, including being named the 2015 NEC Coach of the Year. In 2015, Kowalski guided the team to a 10-11-0 record, 5-3-0 in the NEC. Robert Morris were the runners-up that year, losing 1-0 in the championship to the Knights of Fairleigh Dickinson.

Justin Evans: The first ever player for the Hounds, Evans had a productive career with the club. In a total of six seasons in Pittsburgh (1999-01, 03, 08-09), the midfielder scored 14 goals, 22 assists in 101 games. Evans is one of four players in Riverhounds history to score 50 points and appear in 100 games. From 2010-14, Evans was also the head coach of the Hounds, finishing with a career 18-35-22 record.

David Flavius: Flavius, an eight-year player (1999-2006) for the Hounds, owns almost every offensive stat; goals (58), assists (25), and games played (181). Flavius is the only player in Riverhounds history to score more than 100 points in club history, with 141.

Paul Heasley and Dave Kasper: Heasley founded the Riverhounds on March 11, 1998, bringing soccer back to Pittsburgh after a 13-year hiatus. Through the hard work of both Kasper and Heasley, in 1999, the Hounds were given the honor of USL A-League Organization of the Year.

Also at the event, the Riverhounds announced plans for a new turf-playing surface would be installed at Highmark Stadium. The turf will be completed prior to the Hounds first home game on April 13. Pittsburgh kicks off their season in St. Petersburg, Florida against the Tampa Bay Rowdies on Saturday, March 16.