NORTON, Mass. –Director of Athletics and Recreation John Sutyak '00 has announced the hiring of Bryan Waggoner as the next head men's soccer coach at Wheaton College. Waggoner joins the Wheaton staff as the fifth head coach in program history after serving as head coach at Randolph College in Lynchburg, Va. for the last 11 seasons.
"We are thrilled to welcome Bryan to the Wheaton College family as our next men's soccer coach," stated Sutyak. "Bryan's experience in building a competitive Division III men's soccer program from the ground up and achieving regional and national success, at a small liberal arts institution similar to Wheaton, was extremely impressive to us. We are looking forward to introducing Bryan to the community and to our men's soccer alumni as we work toward continued success in the NEWMAC and NCAA."
Waggoner built the Randolph men's soccer program from scratch when the college transitioned to coeducation in 2007. Since then, he has guided the WildCats to an appearance in the highly regarded Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) Tournament every season since entering the league in 2008. In 2011, he helped to lead Randolph to the schools first ever ODAC championship in a men's sport, and its first-ever NCAA tournament appearance for a men's athletic program, as the WildCats won a school record 18 games and advanced to the NCAA sweet 16. For his efforts, Waggoner was named the ODAC Coach of the Year.
"I would like to first thank Athletic Director John Sutyak and the entire search committee for trusting me with the future of Wheaton soccer. I am truly honored to be a part of a program with such a rich tradition and a special group of alumni," said Waggoner. "I would also like to thank all the staff that took the time to meet with me and embody the tight-knit, high relationship environment that Wheaton exemplifies. I am excited to work with the entire athletic department and school community as they made it very evident how much they cared for the development and experience of the student-athlete, something that resonates at the core my philosophy. I cannot wait to get to work with our Wheaton soccer family. With the foundation of exceptional alumni and student-athletes that are dedicated to strive for greatness, we will rise together."
In 2013, Waggoner was named the Virginia Sports Information Directors (VaSIDA) Coach of the Year, as Randolph went 17-2-1 and won the ODAC regular season crown, ranking as high as No. 15 nationally in both the United Soccer Coaches (USC) and D3soccer.com polls. That squad became the first team in ODAC history to win 10 league games in a single men's soccer season. In 2015, the WildCat's finished second in the ODAC with a 7-1-3 record, along with an 11-game unbeaten streak, en route to a 13-5-3 record and a trip to the ODAC Championship game.
Prior to Randolph, Waggoner spent three seasons as an assistant coach at his alma mater, the University of Richmond. Waggoner also spent time as the head coach at Douglas S. Freeman High School in Richmond, Va., where he amassed a 24-11-8 record over three seasons, as well as spending one season as the assistant men's and women's soccer coach at Linfield College in Oregon.
At the club level, Waggoner has served as the technical director of the Virginia Capital Area Soccer League, where he analyzed, evaluated, and trained teams throughout the club system. In addition, he was the head coach of the under-18 boy's elite team, guiding it to five tournament championships and a final four standing in the state cup.
Waggoner is a 2002 graduate of the University of Richmond and was a four-year letter winner in men's soccer for the Spiders. He served as team captain his senior year under head coach Jeff Gettler, who coached former Wheaton men's soccer coach Matt Cushing at the University of Massachusetts. Waggoner earned the Coaches Award for his leadership skills his senior season and graduated from Richmond with a degree in sociology.
Wheaton concluded the 2017 season with a 7-8-2 overall record and 2-4-1 record in the NEWMAC. The Lyons had three players earn NEWMAC all-conference honors, including the NEWMAC Player of the Year, Amara Sesay, who was also named to the USC all-region team. Mike Coven was named the NEWMAC Coach of the Year after graciously stepping in as interim head coach following the sudden passing of longtime head coach Matt Cushing in August.