2017 Women's Soccer
Head Coach Rhonda Smith
Contact information for Coach SMITH
Office phone: 419-358-3020
Head Coach Rhonda Smith is in her third year at the helm of the Bluffton University Women's Soccer program. She led the Beavers to a 7-10 mark in her first year as the head coach.
Smith, an assistant coach at Bowling Green State University the last two years, is the first full-time head coach in Bluffton women’s soccer history.
At Bowling Green, Smith worked with goalkeepers, including one who led the Mid-American Conference in 2014 both in saves—a school-record 146—and saves per game.
Smith was previously an assistant women’s coach at Youngstown State University in 2012—the most successful season in the program’s history—and at Duquesne University from 2010-11. From 2007-10, she was an assistant women’s and men’s coach at Ashland University.
Smith earned her bachelor’s degree in education, physical education and health in 2006 from Concord University in Athens, West Virginia. During her four-year playing career at the NCAA Division II school, she was a two-time captain who received all-conference honorable mention in 2002—when her team won the West Virginia Intercollegiate Athletic Conference title—and second-team all-conference honors in 2003.
Also at Concord, she was a founding member and president of Student Athlete Mentors, vice president of the Student Athlete Advisory Committee and, in 2006, recipient of the Senior Scholar Athlete Award. In 2005-06, she was a student assistant coach as well.
Smith, who completed a master’s degree in applied exercise science at Ashland in 2009, has directed soccer camps at Bowling Green and Youngstown State, has been an assistant camp director at Duquesne and has coached at other college-based camps. The Greencastle, Ind., native has also been a soccer club coach in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Indiana and West Virginia, and holds several coaching certifications.
In addition to her coaching duties at Bluffton, she will have teaching responsibilities in the university’s academic department of health, fitness and sport science.
Assistant Coach Cheryl Bell
Contact info for Coach BELL
Office phone: 419-358-3488
Cheryl Bell is in her first year as a graduate assistant for the Bluffton University Women's Soccer team. She graduated from Baldwin Wallace University in May 2017 with a Bachelor of Arts and Science Degree in Sport Management and a minor in public relations. Bell played striker for four years at Baldwin Wallace (NCAA DIII) where she was a two-year captain. While in her fifth year at BW, she was a student coach for the women’s team and procured a position as the assistant varsity girls soccer coach at Avon Lake High School.
A native of Piqua, Ohio, Cheryl graduated from Piqua High School in 2012. During her time at Piqua, she was a 4-year varsity letter winner in both soccer and track. While obtaining multiple all-conference accolades in both sports, she was the captain of both teams as well.
Bell has earned her NSCAA Goalkeeper level 1 & 2 diploma. She is continuing her education at Bluffton University in the Masters of Business Administration program.
Assistant Coach Mustaq Ahmed
Contact info for Coach Ahmed
Office phone: 419-358-3237
Mustaq Ahmed returns to the Bluffton University soccer program for his 12th year as a women's assistant coach in 2017. He is also the buildings and grounds supervisor at Bluffton University.
Ahmed played soccer for Bluffton from 1974 through 1977 after arriving in the United States as a foreign student through MCC from Dhaka, Bangladesh, so he is very familiar with the university and the community of Bluffton.
From 1983-93, Ahmed coached youth soccer for Bluffton Family Recreation in the Black Swamp Soccer League (BSSL) during both the spring and fall seasons, developing his love for teaching the game to young players. He started the Under-14 travel teams for boys and girls in Bluffton, directing squads in the Northwest Ohio Youth Soccer League. (NYOSL) His first girls' team took home the Spring Championship trophy in 1993.
In 1996, Ahmed started the girls' high school program at Bluffton and he led the team until 2002. While coaching at Bluffton High School, he was named the Division II Coach of the Year by the Ohio High School Athletic Association for District 4. Four times his squads competed in the district championship game and the Pirates were a regional finalist once during his tenure at Bluffton.
Recently, Ahmed led the Under-14 travel team for the West Central United based in Lima from 2004-07.
Ahmed resides near Bluffton with his wife of 36 years, Becki. They are the parents of Sarah, who lives in Columbus, and Sabrina, who was a two-time all-state selection from the Bluffton High School girl's soccer team and now lives in Findlay.