Thursday, February 21, 2013

Shine coach, FC Spokane director Quintero departs for Moscow

Jason Quintero, the Youth Development Director for FC Spokane and head coach of the WPSL Spokane Shine, is stepping down from both roles to take the Director of Coaching position with Moscow United, effective immediately.

“There are tons of different emotions going through me; excitement, apprehension, sadness for leaving so many people I've grown to know and love in my nine years with River City/FC Spokane and Spokane Shine,” said Quintero. “I'm excited for the opportunity at Moscow United.  It's been a whirwind of a week with them offering me the position on Sunday and then signing the contract on Wednesday.”

Quintero helped oversee the transition of the previously named River City SC to FC Spokane over the past two years while also taking the Shine from an overmatched team of young local talent to a squad of local, national and international talent that won the regular season division title last summer.

The sudden departure of Quintero leaves the Shine without a head coach just a few months before their title defense in an expanded division.

“The Shine management staff will be in contact with those players I've been recruiting and I hope they come.  I had some top-notch players committed to come in and I hope they choose to stay,” Quintero said of preparations he had already made for the upcoming season.

As for the new coach, “At the end of the day, Linda Davis is the queen bee.  I'm sure she'll make a great choice on who will be continuing to grow on what we've accomplished in such a short time with Spokane Shine.”

Though the change came out of left field, the Shine president was more excited for Quintero’s opportunity than daunted with the task to find a new coach on short notice.

“Moving forward, we look forward to new vistas, as is always the case with change. We embrace it,” said team president, Linda Davis. “We are looking a new coach; not a replacement, as Jason is one of a kind - we all are.”

Davis noted the coaching search has begun and is open to all. Interested parties are urged to contact the team and submit resumes to

“What was my initial reaction when I found out? In a word... thrilled,” Davis said of hearing the news Monday evening. “How exciting to see a young man of such patience, devotion, and self-less service to the Spokane Shine, to me, to our team, to his community be rewarded and recognized with such a wonderful opportunity.  As is always the case at the Spokane Shine, we care significantly more about the individual than any other entity or goal.

“In short, we are a team because of Jason's efforts.  His delightful skill set with our athletes, our fans, our professionals has built an incredible framework of strategic relationships which directly resulted in year over year attendance increase, year over year record improvement., and the championship of the Northwest Division of the WPSL.”

On the other side of the move, Moscow United club president Suzanne Anderson is pleased Quintero said yes. “We are very excited that Jason is coming on board as the new DOC for Moscow United. We are looking to expand our club and Jason has the background as well as experience to make that happen in the next few years.“

Moscow United has nearly 300 players (U9-U18) within the club and will feature at least 15 teams during the upcoming spring season. The player pool features players from Moscow and Lewiston as well as from across the border in Pullman, Wash.

Perhaps more importantly for a relieved Quintero, Moscow United is the lone club in town.

“While I'm sad to be leaving so many people, I'm not sad to be leaving the chaos that is youth soccer in Spokane and Washington State,” said Quintero. “There are so many things wrong right now and it's literally going to take a whole generation of players coming through the system and having the market self-correct itself by consumers in the long term.

“The loser in all of this is of course the kids, maybe not necessarily the top 40-50 players in the state at each age group, but the other average players around the state, including Spokane, who won't get full rides to college or play professionally that make up the 99 percent of the youth players.

“The great thing about Moscow United is they know exactly what market they're in and their main goal is to get every single kid in the city hooked on soccer and have a life long love for the game, which is my favorite part of this gig and what I think I'm best at anyways.  I think my life will be a lot more peaceful knowing that's my goal when I wake up every morning, and not needing to worry about other outside factors that are out of my control.”

Other Coaching Changes

Across the state, major news came out of Seattle the past two days as the US Soccer Federation announced that former University of Washington product and Seattle Sounders Women player/coach Michelle French was named the first-ever full-time head coach of the U20 Women’s National Team. The club followed that announcement by naming Hubert Busby Jr., who previously coached the rival Vancouver Whitecaps, as her replacement.

Northwest Nazarene named Mary Trigg, a former assistant coach at Sacramento State and San Francisco State University, as the new head coach of the Crusaders. As a player she helped lead the Fresno State to a pair of Western Athletic Conference titles before wrapping up her career at Campbell University in North Carolina. She returned to California, however, playing for the WPSL San Francisco Nighthawks and beginning her coaching career, spending three years with SFSU and two with SSU. Trigg was appointed to replace Jamie and Rachel Lindvall, who resigned in early December after 10 years leading the program in the Great Northwest Athletic Conference. Also in the GNAC, Western Washington made a slight change with long-time men’s and women’s assistant coach Greg Brisbon being promoted to the men’s head coaching position with Travis Connell remaining as the women’s head coach after leading both teams.

In the NWAACC, Wenatchee Valley CC named Yanet Candido, a former two-time NWAACC All-Star and program career scoring leader for the Knights, as the new head coach of the Knight’s women’s soccer team, replacing Lori Van Lith, whose team finished last in the league in 2012 with an overall record of 0-18-1, scoring seven goals while allowing an astonishing 158. The school also announced that the former head coach of the team from 2005-08, John Wright, is returning in an assistant coach capacity. Since his departure the program won a total of eight games in four seasons.

The University of North Dakota, opponent to EWU, Idaho State and Montana in the Big Sky, named Matt Kellogg head coach.