Travis Wall named St. Olaf head men's soccer coach

Wall becomes the eighth head coach in the history of Ole men's soccer. (Photo: Ohio Wesleyan Sports Information)
Wall becomes the eighth head coach in the history of Ole men's soccer. (Photo: Ohio Wesleyan Sports Information)

St. Olaf College Sports Information Department

NORTHFIELD, Minn. – The St. Olaf College athletic department is pleased to announce the hiring of Travis Wall as the eighth head coach in the history of its men's soccer program, as announced by Athletic Director Ryan Bowles on Wednesday.

"We are thrilled to welcome Travis to the Hill," said Bowles. "Travis is one of the top rising coaches in all of college soccer and his combination of character, success as a player and coach and his commitment to mentoring our student-athletes is a great win for our program and culture. I am confident that the future is bright for Ole men's soccer with Travis leading us."

A former NCAA Division III National Player of the Year, Wall comes to St. Olaf after four seasons on the staff at his alma mater, Ohio Wesleyan University, under Jay Martin, the winningest coach in NCAA men's soccer history. After joining Martin's staff in 2015 as an assistant coach, Wall was promoted to associate head coach in April 2017 and also served as the recruiting coordinator for the Battling Bishops.

"I am beyond excited to be named the next head men's soccer coach at St. Olaf," Wall commented. "Kurt Anderson did such an unbelievable job creating and maintaining this program over his 30 years at St. Olaf and I am humbled and honored to be selected as his successor. I would like to thank the search committee and Ryan Bowles for this incredible opportunity."

In Wall's four seasons on the coaching staff at Ohio Wesleyan, the Battling Bishops posted a combined record of 51-21-9 (.685), including a mark of 25-5-6 (.778) in the North Coast Athletic Conference (NCAC). Ohio Wesleyan made three NCAA Tournament appearances and advanced to the NCAC Tournament title game three times in his four seasons on staff.

Wall also served as Ohio Wesleyan's camp director, recruiting coordinator, travel coordinator and assisted in the development of training plans. He recruited the 2016, 2017 and 2018 NCAC Freshmen of the Year and also coached the NCAC Offensive and Defensive Players of the Year in 2015.

"I also want to thank my former boss and coach Dr. Jay Martin for his mentorship and guidance in developing me from an 18-year-old kid when we first began working with one another to who I am today - his leadership has been invaluable," added Wall. "I also want to thank my friend Jon Lowery, who hired me to my first assistant coaching position at St. Thomas and taught me so much about coaching this game and managing student-athletes. I am eager to get to campus and begin to work with the current group of Ole soccer student-athletes."

As a student-athlete at Ohio Wesleyan, Wall was a two-time NSCAA First Team All-American (2010, 2011) and was named the NSCAA National Player of the Year after captaining the Battling Bishops to the 2011 NCAA Division III National Championship. Wall scored in each of Ohio Wesleyan's final four games in the 2011 NCAA Division III Championship. Over his four years, Wall's teams went 78-11-5 (.856), as he finished his career in the program's top-five in goals (49), assists (36) and points (134).

Wall went on to play professional soccer for Minnesota United FC (formerly Minnesota Stars FC) of the North American Soccer League (NASL) from April 2012 to January 2014, after spending preseason with the Columbus Crew of Major League Soccer (MLS).

Wall's coaching career started at the University of St. Thomas, where he was an assistant coach during the 2012 and 2013 seasons, helping guide the Tommies to a record of 21-9-7 (.662). There, he assisted with all facets of the program and designed and implemented offseason cardio programs.

In 2014, Wall served as the Director of Soccer Operations at Division I Xavier University, as the Musketeers advanced to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament. At Xavier, he worked with the 2014 BIG East Staff of the Year during a season that saw the Musketeers set program records for wins, shutouts and goals-against average.

Wall also carries three seasons of high-level club coaching experience as the head coach of the U19 Ohio Premier Soccer Club Green team and was named the 2018 United Soccer Coaches Midwest Regional Coach of the Year. In 2018, he led the team to the U19 Elite National Premier League (ENPL) National Championship with a team that had eight members sign to play at Division I programs, including Elite Clubs National League (ECNL) National Player of the Year Luke Kiley. The team finished in fifth place at US Youth Soccer (USYS) Nationals in 2017 and was a semifinalist in 2016.

What Others Are Saying About Coach Wall
"Congratulations to St. Olaf College on a fantastic hire in Travis Wall. Travis was a tremendous player and is now a prepared and talented up-and-coming coach. With Travis' pedigree and experience, he will transition well to leading the men's program at St. Olaf to exciting things in the MIAC and North region." – Brandon Bianco (Head Men's Soccer Coach, Case Western Reserve University)

"Travis possesses all the values on and off the field to complement St. Olaf College and the athletic department with a men's soccer program to be proud of. His pedigree as a player and coach speaks for itself and the experience he brings will surely enhance each student-athlete's experience." – Jon Lowery (Head Men's Soccer Coach, University of St. Thomas)

"Travis is a shooting star in the world of college soccer. He has been part of tremendous success on various levels as his understanding of the game, his passion for coaching and his ability to connect with players are top notch. St. Olaf's men's soccer program is in wonderful hands." – Eric Nichols (Head Men's Soccer Coach, Bowling Green State University)

"Travis has been successful at every level of soccer as a player and coach. That will not change at St. Olaf. He will be great." – Dr. Jay Martin (Head Men's Soccer Coach, Ohio Wesleyan University)

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