Meet our Licensed Soccer Instructors
Catalyst Program Director & Club Founder: Paul Holocher
Since 1999, the Catalyst Soccer Club has had the special mission of developing the grassroots game of soccer in the United States. Paul Holocher is the founder and driving force behind this mission. Paul is now excited to be the Director of Development for the Maui United Soccer Club, taking part in helping to develop the youth players and coaches of Maui and surrounding islands to learn and enjoy the game at the higher levels. Paul is a soccer educator and coach that has developed players at every level of the game.
As a player, Paul helped Santa Clara University to a 1989 NCAA Tournament championship and a 20-0-3 record under coaches Steve Sampson and Mitch Murray. Paul went on to a seven year professional career becoming one of the first Americans to play in a European first division when he signed with FC Admira Wacker of the Austrian Bundesliga at the age of 23. Paul returned to the United States from Europe for the formative years of the MLS playing for both San Jose and Chicago before retiring from professional soccer at age 28 to begin his formal coaching career.
As a collegiate head coach for 15 years at both UC Santa Cruz and Cal Poly, Paul Holocher compiled a 181-84-32 overall record and led his programs to six total NCAA Tournament appearances while helping develop many professional players and a strong community passion for the great game of soccer.
Catalyst South Bay Director: Ricardo Espinosa
Catalyst Soccer’s South Bay Director, Ricardo Espinosa, joined Catalyst after an extensive soccer career both as a player and a coach. Ricardo began his soccer career in Lima, Peru where he was born. From Peru, his family moved to the United States where he attended and played soccer at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. After college, Ricardo played professionally for the Monterey Jaguars from 1995-96, and the San Diego Sockers in 1996. From 1997 – 2002, he was involved at both the youth and college level coaching as a coach for UC Santa Cruz Men’s Soccer. Currently the Head Coach at Gavilan Junior College in Gilroy, Ricardo is committed to developing the youth of the South Bay and Monterey regions.
Catalyst Northern California Director: Philip Bliss
Catalyst Soccer’s Northern California Director, Philip Bliss, became passionate about soccer when he was just four years old. During Philip’s soccer career, he played goalkeeper for the SCC Bobcats and the SCC Breakers. While Philip played for the Santa Cruz County Breakers, the team won three State Cup Championships and traveled to four Far West Regional Tournaments.
The Catalyst Soccer Club has influenced Philip’s life in a very positive way. At the age of ten, Philip was a camper at the first ever Catalyst Soccer Camp, held in 1999, which was coached and directed by Club Founder, Paul Holocher. Paul continued to coach Philip in soccer for over ten years and he still continues to mentor Philip. With over twenty years of playing soccer, Philip’s passion for the game is still as strong as ever. He naturally spreads enthusiasm and energy to young soccer players willing to learn and play soccer.
Philip graduated from San Jose State University in 2014. Focusing on his major of Recreation Management, he earned the degree of Bachelor of Science of Recreation.
Catalyst Central Coast Director: Ian Lane