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News - Details

2015 Excellence in Coaching

Excellence in Coaching2

Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer's 2015 Excellence in Coaching Award Winners

Note: This article originally stated that Eddie Leigh was one of this year's honorees. He is not. Jorge Severini is the third recipient along with Erica Walsh and Dave MacWilliams. Leigh will be honored by Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer in a different capacity.

Each year, Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer’s Excellence in Coaching award is presented to individuals who have demonstrated a lifetime of dedication to coaching and educating within our youth soccer community. Recipients have served with integrity, honor, humor and humility, and made extensive and far reaching contributions to the process by which youth soccer players and coaches are taught in Eastern Pennsylvania.

This year's winners are led by the coach of the 2015 National Champions, Penn State Women's Soccer, Erica Walsh.

Here are the honorees:

Erica Walsh: A Huntingdon Valley native, Walsh has enjoyed a distinguished career at all levels of coaching. She was an assistant coach for the gold medal-winning US Women's National Team at the 2008 Summer Olympics.

In nine seasons as the head coach of the Nittany Lions, Walsh has won or shared eight Big 10 regular season titles. Penn State has reached the NCAA Tournament in all nine of those seasons, finishing runner-up in 2012 and winning the ultimate prize last fall.

Walsh coached with Eastern Pennsylvania's Olympic Development Program as well as the US Women's Youth National Teams prior to heading to Penn State.

Jorge Severini: Severini, who passed away in 2014, was a staff coach for Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer for more than 25 years. Prior to coaching, Severini played professionally in his native Argentina as well for the Philadelphia Atoms of the NASL. He then made a home in the Philadelphia area, winning more than 200 games as the head coach of the Haverford High School Boys Team.

Severini was also successful in the youth ranks. His 1990 Willingboro Strikers (NJ) girls team won the US Youth Soccer National Championship and reached the final four each of the next two seasons. Severini also won the Eastern Pennsylvania State Cup with the Haverford Heat girls in 1995.

Dave MacWilliams: The Philadelphia native has been a staple in the soccer community since his days at Philadelphia University, where he led the nation in scoring as a senior and was named an All-American. MacWilliams enjoyed a professional career as a player before turning his attention to the sidelines.

He's been the head coach Temple University Men's Soccer since 2000. MacWilliams has won more than 100 games at the helm of the Owls. The Philadelphia Soccer Hall-of-Famer is also active in the youth soccer community. He currently coaches for Montgomery United. As the head coach of Eastern Pennsylvania's U17 Boys ODP team, MacWilliams finished second in the nation in 2002. He won ODP National Championships in 2003 and 2005.

MacWilliams, Walsh and Severini will be honored with the rest of Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer's Award Winners at the Annual Awards Banquet on March 12th. Tickets are available below.