Madison Memorial has named Cathy (Shaw) Patton as its new girls soccer coach, Spartans athletic director Jeremy Schlitz said Monday night.

Patton, a history teacher at Madison Memorial, has a wealth of soccer experience, including playing for the Spartans and the University of Wisconsin, Schlitz said. She primarily played central defender.

She was a captain and all-state player for Madison Memorial, which won WIAA state titles in girls soccer in 1986 and 1987, which were her junior and senior seasons. She played for UW, and during her time there the Badgers advanced to the 1988 NCAA tournament semifinals, falling to eventual champion North Carolina.

“I’m super-excited about it,” Patton said Monday night about being named the Spartans' coach. “It’s my alma mater. I played for the first coach – Jerry Haugh. He was like a second father to me. He helped me get through the teenage years fairly unscathed. He was a great coach. … I have a lot of fond memories of being part of the Spartans’ soccer family. I’m excited to get back into it.”

She also played in a semi-professional league prior to beginning her coaching career at various area schools, including coaching at various levels in boys and girls programs at Middleton, Madison Edgewood and Madison Memorial for more than 20 years. She had a stint as varsity coach in Middleton, she said.

Cathy Patton’s husband, Tim Patton, was the second coach of the Spartans’ girls program, after Haugh. She said she has coached with her husband at Memorial and against him, when she was at Middleton. She said she is looking forward to coaching her daughter, Rosie Patton, who will be a senior for the Spartans’ soccer team in the spring.

Cathy Patton, 48, replaces Ben Voss, who had coached the girls and boys soccer teams at Memorial. Voss recently resigned and decided to coach the Waunakee girls soccer team. Voss coached the boys team for 16 seasons and the girls team for 10 years.

Voss coached the Spartans’ girls program from 2008 to 2017. He compiled a record of 124-68-36. The Spartans won five Big Eight Conference titles (2009, 2010, 2011, 2013 and 2015) and they made three sectional final appearances (2009, 2011 and 2017) and two state appearances (2009, 2011).

In 39 years, three Spartans coaches won more than 600 matches (607-200-82): Haugh was 381-101-33 from 1979-2001; Tim Patton was 102-31-13 from 2002-07; and Voss was 124-68-36 from 2008-17.

Cathy Patton said Voss is a friend, so she has connection to the previous three coaches.

“It’s a tradition I am proud of,” said Cathy Patton, adding she hopes to continue that tradition.

"It's good to be back as a coach." 

Schlitz said the Spartans are still in the process of identifying and hiring their next boys soccer coach.


Jon Masson covers high school sports for the Wisconsin State Journal. He has covered a variety of sports — including the Green Bay Packers and Wisconsin men's and women's basketball and volleyball — since he first came to the State Journal in 1999.