Stafford Adds Two Members to Staff
gobearcats.COM Neil Stafford
gobearcats.COM
Neil Stafford
gobearcats.COM

July 21, 2014

University of Cincinnati women’s soccer head coach Neil Stafford has announced the addition of two members to his staff.

Stafford, in his second year at UC, has added Gavin MacLeod as a Volunteer Assistant Coach and Felicia Waldock as the Director of Operations.

MacLeod, a native of East Kilbride, Scotland, is a 2009 graduate of Lincoln Memorial University where he was a key member of the men's soccer program for four years. While playing as a defender he won  a conference regular season title (South Atlantic Conference 2007), two conference tournament titles (Gulf South Conference 2005, SAC 2007), two Southeast Regional tournaments (2006, 2007), and appeared in the 2006 Final Four and the 2007 NCAA DII National Championship Final. In addition, he was named 2008 NSCAA Scholar All-Region during a senior season where he served as team captain.

MacLeod also played for the Cincinnati Kings and the Vermont Voltage in the USL Premier Development League during summer breaks.

After obtaining his bachelor’s degree in kinesiology and physical education from LMU he moved to Leeds, England where he completed his masters in sport & exercise nutrition at Leeds Metropolitan University, graduating in 2010. During his time there, MacLeod began working for Leeds United AFC where he acted as the first team nutrition consultant, assistant strength & conditioning coach, as well as a member of the youth coaching staff.

MacLeod returned to Cincinnati in 2012 and began working with the Kings Soccer Academy as an assistant coach for their USL Premier Development League. He also was the head coach of the Cincinnati Saints men’s outdoor soccer team.

“Gavin had been working in our camps and clinics program, so we knew the quality he brings on and off the field,” said Stafford. “Apart from his soccer knowledge, Gavin has a very strong background in sports sciences and nutrition, so he will be an incredible compliment to the direction and vision of the program.”

Waldock, a native of Cincinnati, played collegiate soccer at South Carolina for two seasons before transferring to Purdue to cap off her career. With the Gamecocks, she led the team in scoring her sophomore season and helped them earn an 11-6-4 record. She scored 13 goals in 47 games for the Boilers, sharing the team lead with eight in 2008. Waldock played in all 25 games for Purdue's 2007 team that won a program-record 20 games and won the Big Ten Tournament crown.

Following her collegiate career, she played professionally in Finland in 2011, finishing as the team’s top goal scorer which led to her receiving a contract to play in Sweden in 2012.  

Waldock then headed to Texas A&M International after her international career, where she was an assistant coach for the women’s team. She aided the Dustdevils in posting one of their most successful seasons in program history and earning their first conference tournament bid. Additionally, four players were selected as all-conference players, an honor no TAMIU player had received prior to that season.

She has also garnered three gold medals representing the U.S. In 2009 and 2013, Waldock led the Americans to gold at the Deaflypmics and was awarded the unofficial “Golden Boot Award” both years for being the tournament’s top goal scorer. She added another gold medal at the Deaf World Cup in 2012. Following the tournament, she was selected as the inaugural winner of U.S. Soccer’s Disabled Athlete of the Year award.

“I’m really pleased Felicia decided to join us at UC,” said Stafford. “I think with her experiences, knowledge and love for the game she’ll be a great addition to the staff and a fantastic role model for the players. She’s a wonderful example of what it means to overcome adversity, and I’m sure we will all learn from her.”

Cincinnati opens the 2014 season against Samford on August 22 in Birmingham, Alabama.

The Bearcats return eight starters from a team that finished 8-11-1 overall and 4-4-1 in American Athletic Conference play. In Stafford’s first season, the team saw great improvement from the prior season, marking only the fourth time in 10 years UC accumulated eight or more wins and only the second time in 10 years they had four of more conference victories. Cincinnati, who was picked to finish ninth in the American, surprised the league by finishing sixth.