LEXINGTON, Ky. – Lexington Sporting Club is proud to announce its youth Phase Directors for the upcoming season.
Phase Directors are responsible for overseeing certain stages of the player pathway structure, providing support for coaches and players within their segment of the model. It is the goal of the Phase Directors to help cement the Lexington Sporting Club culture and ensure the Club’s methodologies are implemented.
“The process of hiring Phase Directors has been a major piece of the puzzle,” said Sporting Director Sam Stockley, “It adds an extra layer of support to our youth club structure for coaches, players and parents, as we’ll have another resource for the player placement program and talent identification, player development, coaching education, and communication.
“It was important for us to have specialists within each phase, but also find directors that have strong relationships within the community that will be ideal ambassadors for Lexington Sporting Club.”
Lexington Sporting Club has four phases in its structure: Skill Acquisition (U7-10), Technical Refinement (U11-12), Preparation (U13-15) and Pathway to Pro (U16-19). There will be two directors assigned to each phase on both the girls’ and boys’ side.
Throughout the week, we’ll share more detailed descriptions and goals for each of the four phases, beginning tomorrow (April 26) with the Skill Acquisition Phase.
Learn more about each Phase Director, and what Stockley has to say about each below:
Skill Acquisition Phase (U7 – U10)
Marcus McMullen is from Melbourne, Fla., where she grew up playing youth soccer. After high school, she played collegiate soccer at Flager College in St. Augustine. Before she moved to Lexington this past March, she spent three years coaching a U11 girls team for Cincinnati Soccer Club. Grace said she is “so excited to be a part of growing youth soccer in Lexington. To be a part of a club that prioritizes player development is so special, and I am so happy to be here.”
Marty Tappel also calls Lexington home. He became a National Champion when he played for Javanon FC and gained another National Championship title with Busch S.C. He also gained collegiate playing experience when he attended Saint Louis University. Marty has coaching experience from Commonwealth SC for a variety of ages ranging from U9 through U13. Currently, he is a coach for Javanon FC with their U12 team. He explained that he is “excited for the youth players of Lexington to get top class coaching and competition level within the club and highly competitive leagues for an opportunity to showcase the talent from Central Kentucky.”
Sam Stockley: Marty is a great addition to the staff. He’s a quality player who has been through the youth national team pathway. His hunger to continue to develop as a person and coach is what made him stand out and be an excellent part of our coaching staff.
Timbo Jenkins was born and raised in Nicholasville, Ky. He has played for various select teams including Bluegrass United, LYSA Select team, and has even traveled to Europe to compete throughout England and France. During his college years, he shifted his athletic interest to pursue basketball, but his passion for soccer never died. Jenkins has coached and been a Youth Academy director for many years, and has even coached and directed 3v3 futsal tournaments on a national level. When asked what excites him most about Lexington Sporting Club, he said that he is, “most excited about the unity of players, coaches, directors, and facilities for Lexington soccer!”
Sam Stockley: Timbo is an amazing trainer, and his passion and excitement to want to help improve young players is infectious. His unique thinking was a difference maker when it came to player development in this area.
Technical Refinement Phase (U11 – U12)
Scott Lowery is originally from Elizabethtown, Ky., but has been rooted in Lexington since 2004. He has over 8 years of coaching experience at recreational and competitive club levels. The biggest contribution to his coaching career has been with Commonwealth SC. Scott led the Girls Academy to its largest membership total while he helped to redesign the Academy program. During the off season he also coaches indoor games and 3v3 events and has a team to place 3rd at the National Championships. Scott said that he is most excited about “the immediate training impact that our youth players will receive from the merging of two strong clubs. These players & teams now have the advantage of playing against each other up to 3 times a week as opposed to only a few times a year. When you combine that with Lexington Sporting Club’s well organized youth club structure, performance offerings and a Player Placement Program that fosters season long incentive to compete, our young athletes have everything they need to succeed at the highest level.”
Sam Stockley: Scott is a huge addition to the team. His passion to unite the football community and knowledge of the player pool in this market stood out to us. He will be a great support for all coaches, players and families within his phase. He has excellent communication skills that will be a big piece of this role.
Tom Morgan is from right here in Lexington. He previously played for the LYSA select team and Bon Air Soccer Club. Once he reached the collegiate level, he kept his skills in the state and played for Western Kentucky University. He is “excited Lexington Sporting Club is investing in our soccer community and the growth of Central Kentucky soccer.”
Sam Stockley: Tom’s reputation within this soccer community was big reason why he was a perfect fit for our coaching staff. His passion and hunger to improve, support and help players and the people around him was evident on all conversations.
Brent Chase is from our neighboring state, hailing from Westerville, Ohio. He is currently the head men’s soccer coach at Georgetown College; but formally was the head coach of Finlandia University for four years and an Assistant Coach at Ohio Dominican University for seven years. He has also spent four years coaching with the Columbus Crew in the nation’s seventh-ranked youth club. Brent has earned numerous awards such as Coach of the Year, Player of the Year, 40+ All Conference Award Winners, 50+ All-Academic Award Winners, and multiple Academic All-Americans. Brent is “excited to be part of the development of our future home-grown professional players.”
Sam Stockley: I’m ecstatic that Brent is part of our team. He’s got fantastic knowledge and experience with player development at all levels, and will be a great supporter for the coaches within the phase.
Preparation Phase (U13 – U15)
Bo Lankster is a Lexington native who has coached high school soccer for almost 30 years at Paris High School and Tates Creek High School. He also has over 25 seasons of club coaching experience for several age groups with Central KY Storm Club and Lexington FC. Additionally, Bo has years of experience as a staff member for ODP Camp on both the State and Regional level. Bo mentioned what excites him most about Lexington Sporting Club is that “we directly support the only professional soccer club in the Central Kentucky region. We will be a part of the rich Lexington Sporting Club culture and it will be our responsibility to help meet their developmental needs so they are prepared as our youth players to have success within and outside of Lexington Sporting Club.”
Sam Stockley: Bo’s reputation in the Lexington football community was evident from the first day I arrived here. His passion to unite the footballing community and his inclusive nature will make him a huge success within this role. He will be a great support to all the coaches, players and families in his phase.
Morgan Proffitt was born and raised in Columbus, Ind.. She played NCAA Division I soccer at Marquette University. Following college, Morgan was drafted to play professionally with the Chicago Red Stars. She has played at professional level with several teams throughout the country and even internationally. Some of those teams include Washington Spirit, playing abroad in Champions League with Slavia Praha in Prague, and then she finished her career with Seattle Reign. She stated that, “Growing up, I always had the mindset of playing at the highest level. To do that, I had to travel an hour and a half away from my hometown to get to that competitive training environment and to be seen by college coaches. Lexington Sporting Club will bring so many new opportunities for both our females and males that they won’t need to seek out options further away. With professionalism, structure, an educated and passionate coaching staff, and a direct pathway to play professionally, it’s an exciting time to be a soccer player in Kentucky-no matter what his or her end goal is with the sport. I am looking forward to using my experiences playing professionally to help our girls reach their goals on and off the field this year!”
Sam Stockley: As a former professional player who has grown up through the American system playing college and professional, Morgan’s experiences and knowledge of the player pathway is invaluable to our young female players. She will be a huge resource for coaches, players and families.
Todd Bretz brings an abundance of coaching experience to the table with over 30 years at high schools here in the Lexington area. He has over 500 wins as a high school coach which includes 28 regional tournaments, eight state final-four appearances, four state championships, and two state runner-up titles. This six-time National Coach of the Year mentioned that what makes him most excited about Lexington Sporting Club is, “the opportunity to benefit all the soccer players in the Commonwealth. Lexington Sporting Club has a goal and commitment to developing and providing opportunities for all levels of players to excel from the recreational player to pros.”
Sam Stockley: Todd is a huge asset to this program. His knowledge, experience and love for the game is evident, and every time he steps onto the field there is an obvious passion for player development.
Logan Wiley is originally from San Diego, Calif., but has spent most of his life playing and coaching soccer in Kentucky. He has played for Harrison County High School, Bluegrass United Soccer Club, and Transylvania University. Logan also has three years of experience as a Lexington Soccer Club (TOCA) Trainer. Although he just began his coaching career in 2021, he has had his foot on the ball since he was just five years old. Logan believes that “with the team of coaches and mentors we have, we are going to guide the youth of Lexington on the path to becoming one of the most prolific organizations across the country.”
Sam Stockley: Logan will be an excellent addition to this phase. He has a real hunger and thirst to make players better, and has a burning passion for continued education in the game.
Pathway to Pro Phase (U16 – U19)
Sol Forsythe has ten years of coaching experience in various levels of youth soccer from recreational to school and club soccer. He has directed teams to multiple tournament achievements for both male and female teams, including 2019 Nike Turf Classic Champions (U14 Girls) and 2022 KH Volta Cup Futsal Champions (U13 Boy). Sol’s love for the game is also shared amongst his three children who all play club soccer. His main goal as a coach is to “focus on outreach and increasing opportunities for female players especially in rural and outer counties where clubs and higher-level play is not easily accessible.”
Sam Stockley: Sol brings a different perspective to our program, with experience working with clubs outside of Lexington in rural counties. His attention to detail and processes is going to make us all better.
Megan Skinner has a wide range of coaching experience including being a University of Nebraska Assistant Coach, Girl’s Director of Coaching for two different clubs in Nebraska and Kentucky. She has also been LFC Girls’ Academy Director and U11-U13 LFC Coach. Along with coaching, Megan also has player experience with Creighton University as a four-year starter, USYSA U16 All-American, and U23 Region 2 Olympic Development Program Team.
Sam Stockley: Megan’s knowledge and experience of the landscape of female football at all levels – both locally and nationally – became evident the moment we spoke. She will be a huge resource for our female players who have the goals to play either for our professional women’s team or in college.
Diego d’Angelo brings his talents all the way from Firenze, Italy. Along with playing soccer on both Italian and American soil, he has been a competitive travel head coach for Lexington FC for twelve years for ages ranging from 11-18. Diego additionally has ten years of youth soccer coaching experience with Lexington Youth Soccer Association (LYSA) and six years of high school varsity assistant head coaching experience at Lafayette. He stated: “whether a player is interested in developing and competing at the club level, in a true academy system, collegiately or at the professional level, Lexington Sporting Club is going to be a game changer in terms of the opportunity it will provide through its training complex, holistic support infrastructure, and professional staff. Ultimately, it is all about the players and this organization will maximize their experience.”
Sam Stockley: Diego has an outstanding knowledge of the local market and is going be a great addition to the team. I’m excited for Diego and what he can bring with his passion and leadership.
Kenny Nusbacher has over 30 years of coaching experience at state, regional, and national level. Along with being a high school coach, Kenny has 12 years of ODP coaching experience at both state and regional level. He was born and raised in Brooklyn, N.Y., but called Lexington home when he played for Transylvania University in college. Kenny has also played on the professional level with both the Lexington Bluegrass Bandits and Birmingham Grasshoppers of the USISL. For Kenny, “Lexington Sporting Club brings for the first time a truly professional environment for all the players and families in the Lexington and central Kentucky area, and links directly with Lexington’s own men’s and women’s professional teams.”
Sam Stockley: Kenny has been a huge supporter of the program since day one, and I believe his knowledge of the market and the local talent is a huge asset for this Club and this phase, specifically.