Robert Ruiz, the athletic director at Westmont, has announced the hiring of Morgan Cathey as the next men’s soccer head coach. Cathey has served as the head coach at Stanislaus State since 2020 and served as the head coach at Whitworth (Wash.) for seven years from 2013-2019.
“We are thrilled to welcome Coach Cathey to the Westmont College community,” said Ruiz. “He brings a wealth of experience as a collegiate head soccer coach, including his most recent stop at the NCAA DII level.
“His experience, combined with a compelling vision for the future of the program, stood out in the process. I believe that his enthusiasm and framework for student-athlete development, both athletically and spiritually, will be an instrumental component to the continued growth of our men’s soccer program.”
Cathey becomes just the fifth men’s soccer head coach in the program’s 58-year history.
“As a collegiate student-athlete at a rival institution to Westmont, I knew of the tradition of competitive success that Westmont has had for generations,” stated Cathey. “What I learned through the hiring process was that these traditions are richer and more profound than what I had originally understood.
“It is extremely humbling to follow in the footsteps of coaches like Russ Carr, Bob Fortosis and Dave Wolf. They maintained such a high level of success and excellence within the program. These men are phenomenal men and phenomenal coaches.”
Cathey played his collegiate soccer as a goalkeeper for Azusa Pacific from 2002 to 2005 and received NAIA All-American honorable mention recognition as a senior.
After graduating from APU with a degree in youth ministry, Cathey played one year for the Cascade Surge in Salem, Oregon in the Premier Development League.
From 2007 through 2009, he played professionally in South Africa for Ajax Cape Town (currently named the Cape Town Spurs Football Club) helping lead the Ajax to a runner-up finish in the South African Premier Division. From 2009 to 2011, Cathey coached professionally in South Africa.
Returning to the States in 2011, Cathey served as an assistant coach at Stanislaus State for three years, during which the program won its first collegiate conference championship and experienced its first NCAA Division II Tournament win.
“Morgan is a dynamic leader whose coaching philosophy aligns with our mission,” noted Ruiz. “I look forward to the impact he and his family will have on our students and our community.”
“Throughout the entirety of the interview process, our family was thoroughly convinced that Westmont aligns completely to our desire to serve a university, not just an athletic department and soccer program,” noted Cathey. “Westmont as a whole is an institution that we thoroughly believe in. We also believe, likewise, that the men’s soccer program provides a platform to be extremely successful in the ways that we value success.
“I believe that success within a collegiate program embodies every form of growth opportunity available. I believe Westmont provides a platform to impact not just the soccer player, but to impact the whole person.
“What we also experienced is that Westmont’s heart is to provide every resource and experience possible to impact the whole person and the athlete. Success for us looks like young men growing to become the best soccer players they can be and, likewise, being equipped to become the best version of themselves when they leave the confines of Westmont College. I believe that we will create young men that will be able to make an immediate impact in the world in whatever vocation they go into.
“My goal is to create the most enjoyable college soccer experience possible. What I believe is foundational to that experience is playing the game a certain way that is designed to enjoy every interaction with the game. So, when people come and watch us play, it will be enjoyable to watch because it is enjoyable to play.”
Ruiz shared, “The search committee felt strongly that Morgan would bring a dynamic skill set to the program from which our players will benefit. His recruiting vision, player development philosophy and experience in developing culture are all strengths that he will bring to our program.
“It became evident in the process that Coach Cathey will bring a level of intensity to the training environment that will push our student-athletes to maximize their gifts and talents. I am confident that his deep commitment to his faith and background in ministry will allow him to profoundly impact the lives of each of his student-athletes. We are very excited about the future of Westmont Men’s Soccer.”
“We want to express our gratitude to Dr. Beebe,” said Cathey. “It was great to meet him. Hearing his vision for the institution was something that helped me and helped align our hearts.
“I also want to communicate my extreme gratitude to Robert Ruiz, Dave Odell and Kirsten Moore. They have been nothing short of incredible through this process. They have made the process such an ease and have made myself and my family feel so welcome.”
Cathey and his wife, Cari, have four children: Bauer, a 12-year old son, two daughters – 10 year old Lucca and eight year old Mallie – and a one-year-old son, Duke.
Ron Smith is the sports information director at Westmont College.