Washington State will “commence immediately” with a national search to replace women’s soccer coach Keidane McAlpine, Cougars athletic director Bill Moos said Tuesday.
McAlpine, who led WSU to two NCAA tournament appearances in as many seasons as head coach, was lured away Monday by Pac-12 rival Southern California.
“We appreciate what Keidane did during his time here,” Moos said Tuesday morning.
“Our focus is now to secure the very best coach available in order to keep the soccer program moving forward and competing at a high level in the Pac-12.”
McAlpine led the Cougars to a program-best second-place finish this year in the Pac-12, and was named the conference and NSCAA Pacific Region coach of the year.
This season, the Cougars tied the program record for victories with an overall record of 14-3-4, and his team and players set or tied 27 school records. Considered an offensive-minded coach, McAlpine showed his defensive savvy while at WSU as the Cougars finished 2013 ranked No. 7 in the nation with only 11 goals allowed.
Moos said the coaching search will be aided by the Washington State University Board of Regents’ recent approval of a facilities upgrade, including permanent covered stands on the north end and a modern media facility at midfield.
The facility also willl include a grand entrance with a concession stand, lights and a new scoreboard.
“The Cougar program has a lot to offer, given our sustained success, the talented players returning, the group of recruits committed for next season and the facility project,” Moos said.McAlpine’s departure leaves vacancies at all three Division I programs in the Inland Northwest; Idaho coach Pete Showler resigned last week after nine seasons, and Eastern Washington coach George Hageage stepped down on Oct. 29 after 14 years.
Meanwhile, USC athletic director Pat Haden said McAlpine “really stood out with his vision of what he wants to bring to the USC soccer program.”
USC won the NCAA title in 2007 but has not reached the postseason since 2010.