Jay Perkins – Club President, Senior Staff Coach: An Erie PA native, Jay has been involved coaching at the youth and high school level for over 8 years. He is a teacher at Westlake middle school, and the head coach of the McDowell Varsity girls program that has won 3 consecutive District 10 championships under his tenure, including a State Championship Finalist in 2009. Jay is a graduate of McDowell high school, and is heavily involved in the Millcreek middle school soccer programs. Email Jay Perkins
Jamie Smith – Executive Director, Director of Coaching-Boys Program: Jamie Smith has been a driving force in the promotion of soccer for over 20 years. Smith, known for his Leadership and innovative style of coaching, has 15 years of soccer club operating and Director of Coaching experience.
He went on to take his United State Soccer Federation coaching licenses and the National Soccer Coaches Association of America’s Advanced National Coaching Diploma and Premier Coaching Diploma. In 1995, Smith spent time in Holland studying soccer at the Royal Dutch Soccer Federation (KNVB) – coaching school in Zeist. After passing all exams, Smith was honored as the youngest American to complete the NSCAA / KNVB International Coaching License. Full Bio Email Jamie Smith
Sanjin (Sonny) Vidakovic – Administrative Staff Director, Senior Staff Coach: Originally from Bosnia Herzegovina, Sonny has been involved in all levels of the game both as a player and a coach. A graduate of Cathedral Prep and Gannon University, where he excelled as a player, Sonny has been coaching youth club soccer for over 10 years, and is the Assistant coach of the McDowell Varsity girls program. Sonny holds a teaching degree and has worked at both Mercyhurst Prep and the Millcreek school district.
Dan Kowalczyk – Staff Coach and Administrative Coordinator: Dan Kowalczyk brings to the club over 20 years of playing and coaching experience. Dan played four years of Varsity Soccer for Fort LeBoeuf High School and continued his playing career playing for four years at Houghton College as well as many years of club experience. He started his coaching career at Scio Central School in NY and was the assistant men’s and women’s soccer coach at Mercyhurst college, the north east campus for two years.
Dan is currently a Health Educator Teacher at McDowell and will be entering his fourth season as the head Junior Varsity boys soccer coach and Varsity Boys assistant coach. He is also a current club coach and serves as the middle school soccer coordinator for all Millcreek middle schools.
Gary Kagiavas – Director of Coaching-Girls Program: Originally from South Africa, Gary brings over 25 years of playing and coaching experience at all levels, including College and professional, both here in the U.S where he holds a National USSF “B” License, and NSCAA National license, and has earned numerous coaching awards as the head coach of the NCAA Div II Edinboro University Women’s program for 17 years. In the youth and club levels, Gary has coached numerous teams that have produced hundreds of players that have gone into college programs, and has aided hundreds of players with their college recruitment opportunities. Email Gary Kagiavas
Pedro Argaez – Soccer Operations, Senior Staff Coach: Originally from Merida,Mexico, Pedro has been coaching boys and girls youth players for over 20 years.Pedro holds a National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) National Diploma and an NSCAA Youth National Diploma license. Pedro has been an active high school soccer coach for Seven years at Mercyhurst Preparatory School, where he has won the only High School Soccer State Championship in Erie’s history, as well as Pennsylvania coach of the year honors. Pedro is the founder and current President of GLA Soccer Association which encompasses several clubs and organizations from Pittsburgh, Cleveland, Buffalo and Canada.
Nenad Vidakovic, Senior Staff Coach: Vidakovic brings a wealth of international playing and coaching experience to the MSA coaching staff, and he works primarily as the director of the MSA gunners program.
He has 18 seasons of coaching experience at the club, high school, collegiate, and professional levels and currently holds the NSCAA National Coaching Certificate. Vidakovic coached boys’ soccer at Cathedral Prep in Erie for eight seasons. He led Prep to the PIAA state championship in 2001 and also guided the team to a state final appearance in 1997. His Prep teams won eight Metro titles and six District-10 championships. A former Yugoslavian National Team player, his experience includes playing in the European Cup and Olympic game qualifiers. Along with his experience on the Yugoslavian National Team, Vidakovic also enjoyed a 15 year professional career in Yugoslavia, Turkey, France and Cypress.
Jamie (Tekotte) Sallie: A native of Erie PA, Jamie has excelled both as a player and a coach for over 18 years. A graduate of McDowell, Jamie holds an NSCAA national coaching license, and has 6 years of College coaching experience at the NCAA Div. II program from Edinboro University. As a player, Jamie was a soccer scholarship recipient at the Division I Central Michigan University, and at the Division II Edinboro University, where she holds several soccer career records. As a youth coach, Jamie has been involved coaching for over 8 years from the Juniors level to the high school age players, producing dozens of scholarship recipient soccer players.
Aaron Pentz: A graduate from McDowell, Aaron has been coaching high school and youth soccer for over 15 years. Aaron holds an NSCAA National coaching license, and has been involved as a soccer coach for Millcreek and McDowell, as well as a club soccer coach for the last 10 years, where he has helped produced dozens of players that have gone to play college soccer. Aaron is a Math teacher at Westlake middle school.
Doug Bakka: An Erie PA native, Doug has coached for over 20 years at the high school and club soccer level. A graduate of Mercyhurst Prep, where he also serves as a teacher for the past 18 years, Doug has taken the Lakers to State Championship levels for the past two years. Doug holds an NSCAA national coaching license, and has coached at the highest level of club soccer, producing dozens of scholarship recipient soccer players. Doug has also coached and directed for several years in the juniors age program, where he teaches the most important skills to produce quality soccer players.
Jen Hart (Staff coach and club registrar): An Erie PA native and Mercyhurst Prep/Mercyhurst College graduate, Jen Hart has over 25 years of playing and coaching experience. Jen works with the younger girls teams at the club, where she excels coaching the fundamentals of the game and footskills necessary to become a great player, and she has coached hundreds of girls that have gone to play at the next level. Jen also serves a very important administrative role for the club, both as a registrar and in charge of uniforms and gear.
Sombath Inthavong: Originally from Laos, Bot has excelled as player and a coach at all levels of soccer for over 25 years. A graduate of Iroquois High School, Bot holds a NSCAA national coaching license and is also a member of the Mercyhurst Prep coaching staff where he won the boys program s first District 10 A boys title in school history and has then led the team to 3 consecutive D10 A titles and 2 PIAA state championship appearances. Bot has 10 years coaching experience ranging from the Juniors level to high school age, teaching the most important skills and producing some of the brightest and best soccer players in the region.
Jason Falk: An Erie native, Jason has over 11 years experience coaching youth club soccer. He also has 7 years experience at the high school level, and currently is the Varsity Boys Coach at Fort LeBoeuf High School. Jason is also a math teach at Fort LeBoeuf High School.
Michael Romeo: A native of Erie, PA, Michael has been coaching soccer for over 18 years. For 10 years, Michael was an assistant coach at Cathedral Prep, assisting former Varsity head coach and current MSA Gunners director Nenad Vidakovic for 7 years. Michael went on to coach in the Erie School District at both the middle school and high school levels. In joining MSA, Michael brings with him many years of club soccer coaching experience that has span all age levels. Michael is an elementary school guidance counselor in the Erie School District.
Josh Hopkins: A native of Erie, PA, Josh has been coaching soccer for over 8 years holding a NSCAA D License. Josh started coaching at Mercyhurst Prep where he won District 10 in 2006 and was the runner up in 2005 and 2007. Josh currently coaches at General McLane who won District 10 in 2011 and was the runner up in 2012. Josh has played at the club level in Erie and also went on to play at Division III Baldwin Wallace.
Dan Young: An Erie PA native, Dan has been coaching soccer for over three years now, all at General Mclane High School. Dan coaches as the head JV coach and is the assistant for the varsity program where they have won District 10 in 2011 and runner-up in 2012. Dan brings over 20 years of playing experience including playing at the club level for many years and four years at Mercyhurst College (University) where they competed in the NCAA tournament twice. Also had the opportunity to play tournaments in Germany and Holland.
Tom Kaspick: A resident of Erie, PA since 1986. Tom has been coaching youth soccer in the area for over 11 years. He has been a director on the board of EYSA for the past eight years as well as serving as the director of refereeing. He is the current President of Millcreek Soccer Boosters for McDowell High School. He has also coached on the club level for the Erie Lightning, and coached for and founded the Erie Titans Soccer Club. Tom operates his own consulting company here in Erie.
Bryan Kowalczyk: An Erie, PA native, Bryan has 20 years of combined coaching experience at the high school and club level. He was the head coach of the boys and the girls varsity soccer teams at Fort Leboeuf for a total of 9 seasons and has coached club soccer for 20 seasons. In addition, he played soccer for Houghton College and currently holds the NSCAA National Diploma License. Bryan is currently a Health & Physical Education teacher at Fort LeBoeuf High School.
Chris Cruikshank: Chris brings over 15 years of playing and coaching experience to MSA. A native of the Baltimore, MD region, Chris played numerous years of club soccer and continued his playing career at Houghton College as a varsity starter.
In addition to coaching at MSA, Chris has coached in the Millcreek area as the head middle school boys soccer coach at JS Wilson since 2010
Melissa Leszek: A native of Erie, PA, Melissa has excelled in the world of soccer for over 16 years. Starting at age six, she has played 12 years at club level, was captain for her high school team at Fairview, winning four D-10 championships as well as several awards; and an NCAA Div. II scholarship recipient for Edinboro University. Melissa is known for her positive attitude, encouragement, and success as a youth coach and strives to teach important skills and well rounded knowledge of the game to help her players perform at the next level, including high school.