Women's Soccer Prepares for 2018 Kickoff, Hires First Ever Head Coach
Next fall, Cal Maritime kicks off the inaugural season of women's soccer at the campus.
Emily Scheese, a three-time Division III Association of Independents Coach of the Year for UC Santa Cruz, has been selected as the program's first ever head coach.
"This is an exciting opportunity for the core group of diverse women already on campus waiting to play soccer and formally represent Cal Maritime on the intercollegiate stage," said Scheese.
"Emily has an excellent coaching background at the intercollegiate level in the Bay Area. She brings the knowledge, experience and familiarity with the Bay Area to be able to recruit student athletes to get the program up and running," said Director of Athletics Marvin Christopher.
Women's soccer is operating as a club team in 2017-18 before moving up to intercollegiate competition next year. So, recruiting has already begun.
Female enrollment at Cal Maritime has increased dramatically in recent years, from 11 percent of all new enrollees in the fall of 2012 to 20 percent in the fall of 2017.
"I believe the addition of women's soccer will shed new light and interest on the strong academic programs at Cal Maritime," said Scheese. "It's also an exciting opportunity for more women soccer players to find a home playing in the Bay Area and Northern California. I've been out on the road recruiting players that fit the academic niche of our campus and that also have the drive to shape a new program for years to come."
"Starting a new intercollegiate program is never easy, but I'm motivated by the challenges ahead," Scheese said. "It's great to begin something from scratch and be able to shape and mold the values you believe in as a coach for your players and recruit players that share that vision. In the first couple of seasons of NAIA play in the Cal Pac Conference, we hope that the scoreboard will reflect positive outcomes, and we will work towards them tirelessly."
Scheese's 2016-17 team at UC Santa Cruz qualified for the NCAA Division III playoffs. She spent two seasons as an assistant before becoming the head coach from 2012-2017.
Under her watch the Banana Slugs won the Great South Athletic Conference in 2015 and advanced to the NCAA Division III National Championship Tournament in 2015 and 2016. She also won the National Soccer Coaches Association of America's Team Scholar Award with a cumulative GPA of 3.35—the highest in the UC system from 2012 to 2016.
Scheese is also a coach with Global Premier Soccer's Almaden FC. She served as Co-Director for Nike Soccer's US Sports Camps from 2012-2017. Scheese was also instrumental in community outreach in working with the Aptos Soccer Club in south Santa Cruz County.
Scheese's UC Santa Cruz teams featured the Association of D-III Independents Defensive Player of the Year in 2013, 2014 and 2016, and the GSAC Tournament MVP and four All-Tournament Team selections in 2015. Players were also recognized with all-region team selections, all-region scholar accolades, and conference all-scholar team selections.
"The small-college element of the Academy and the tight-knit group of students on campus in general, make this a place in which athletics can be one of the many positive elements of the larger body of student life," said Scheese. "The values the Corps of Cadets seek to uphold in their daily lives as students on the campus can only enhance the teamwork required to be successful on the field as well."