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Staff Directory

Rafael Martinez

Rafael Martinez


Head Men's Soccer Coach




Marshalltown Community College



Bldg & Room Number

SAC room xxx


Head Coach Rafael Martinez (Cordoba, Spain) became MCC’s third head soccer coach in the spring of 2010. Guiding the Tigers through the national spotlight throughout his tenure, Martinez is the winningest coach in program history with a record of 97-36-7 (.717 winning percentage). Since taking over the program, 5 of Martinez players have received All American recognition, with 3 of them being honored their two years at MCC. Coach Martinez has also led his program to success in the classroom, as his team has been recognized as NJCAA Academic Team of the Year in the 2015-2016, 2016-2017 and 2017-2018 seasons. Individually, 20 players have received Academic All American honors.

In 2017, Coach Martinez took a leave of absence after the MCC soccer team had played their first 5 matches of the season. Coach Chris Fuchsen took over as interim head coach, finishing the season with an overall 13-3 record, after losing in the Regional Semifinal match. Kino Ryosuke earned All American honors, as well as MCC Male Athlete of the Year. 6 players received All Region XI Honors. The team posted an overall GPA of 3.31, which ranked among the best in the nation. A total of 8 soccer players received Academic All American Honors.

2016 was another year of great success for the MCC Tigers. Coach Martinez led the team to a 15-4-1 record, but fell short of a trip to the NJCAA National Tournament after losing in the Regional Tournament Championship game. The team finished 2nd in the ICCAC Conference. Two players, Rafael Pereira and Fernando Gutierrez earned All American Honors, while 5 players received Academic All American recognition. A total of 9 players received All Region XI Honors as well as 16 receiving Academic All Region Honors.

2015 was a year for the record books for the Tigers as Martinez led the team to one of its most prominent seasons in program history. MCC posted a record of 18-1-2, with its only loss coming in the Region XI Championship game. Along with numerous team and individual accolades, Martinez boasted two NJCAA All-Americans in freshmen goalkeeper Rafael Pereira and freshman defender Fernando Gutierrez along with 11 All-Region XI picks. The team won its third regular season Region XI Championship as well.

Not only did the Tigers dominate on the field in 2015, the team earned its first-ever NJCAA Academic Team of the Year honor after maintaining an overall GPA of at least 3.0. Four players – Pereira, Pedro Oliveira, Miguel Jareno, and Florian Caraballo – earned prestigious individual NJCAA academic honors as well.

2014 proved to be another strong year in the win column for the Tigers as Martinez guided MCC to a 13-7-0 record, the fourth-straight year of at least 12 wins. MCC posted another second-place finish in the ICCAC with an 8-4-0 league mark. Despite a semifinal loss to Iowa Lakes Community College in the Region XI Tournament, the Tigers boasted a strong resume under Martinez. Juan Carrillo earned NJCAA Third-Team All-American honors, becoming the first player in program history to earn All-American recognition in consecutive years.

Eight members of the Tigers were named to the All-Region XI team, marking the fourth straight year MCC has placed at least six players on the All-Region squad. In addition, nine players earned All-Region XI Academic honors, including Carrillo who became the program’s second Academic All-American

Martinez guided the Tigers to their third-straight season of at least 12 wins in 2013 after the team posted a 14-4-1 record. MCC earned the No. 2 seed in the Division I Region XI Tournament after recording a 10-2 mark in league play. The Tigers appeared in 12 of the 13 weeks of the NJCAA Division I poll, reaching as high as No. 15.

Martinez coached his second All-American as freshman Juan Carrillo was named to the NJCAA Division I Second-Team in 2013. The Tigers also placed eight players on the All-Region XI team, including three first-team picks. Since 2010, Martinez has coached 22 All-Region XI selections with seven earning first-team honors.

After posting a 6-9 record in his initial year as head coach in 2010,  the Tigers improved to a 12-5-1 record in 2011 with a third-place finish in Region XI were ranked as high as No. 20 in the NJCAA Division I rankings. Martinez also led the team to win the Minnesota Classic Tournament, a competition that included junior colleges from all over the country.

Martinez’s head coaching career took off in 2012 as the Tigers advanced to the NJCAA National Tournament in Albany, GA. MCC dropped its opening round game to eventual National Champion Tyler CC, but won its next game against Jefferson College. The Tigers finished fifth at the national tournament and were ranked No. 9 in the final Division I poll.

Sophomore defender Javier Lopez was named to the NSCAA Junior College Division I All-American Team following the 2012 season. All nine sophomores from the 2012 team received scholarships to play at four-year universities.

Prior to becoming the program’s head coach, Martinez served as the assistant coach for three years at MCC, including the 2007 season when the Tigers finished 3rd in the NJCAA National Tournament in Tyler, TX.

Since 2010, Martinez has seen a magnitude of success in developing players and moving on to the next level. 28 players under Martinez’s mentorship have moved on to four-year institutions, including eight from the 2015 team.

Martinez, a native of Cordoba, Spain, has accumulated vast playing experience throughout his life. He started playing club soccer at age 9, when he was scouted by the coaching staff of Club Deportivo Alcazar. At age 19, he received the opportunity to compete at the amateur level with C.D. Miralbaida. After a very successful season, he was offered a spot at Seneca Club de Futbol, a club that competed at the semi-professional level in the southern part of Spain. During those years, Martinez was selected to represent his state in the National University Cup.

In 2004, he moved to the United States to play soccer at Iowa Wesleyan College (Mt. Pleasant). During his playing career with the IWC Tigers (2004-2006), he earned First-Team All-Conference honors and was named All-Conference Newcomer Player of the Year. He was named team captain and set school records both in season and career points and goals scored.

At Iowa Wesleyan, Martinez double majored in physical education and exercise science and wellness, graduating with honors in May of 2007. While in Spain, he graduated from the Universidad de Cordoba in 2003 with an elementary education degree. Martinez earned his master’s degree in Coaching and Athletic Administration from Concordia University-Irvine in the summer of 2013.

Martinez also has head coaching experience at the club level with C.D. Alcazar, soccer schools like Seneca-Real Madrid C.F., boys and girls high school soccer in Columbus Junction and Marshalltown, and in several international soccer camps. Coach Martinez holds a “B” National Coaching License from the United States Soccer Federation.

Martinez combines his coaching duties at MCC with teaching physical education at Marshalltown High School. He lives in Ames with his wife, Ashley, and their three sons: Iker, Rafa, and Pablo.