Spokane Shadow News Release - Wednesday, March 28
The Spokane Shadow announced that Jesse Retan, a member of the Men's First Team since its return in 2014, has been appointed as the new head coach of the Evergreen Premier League team.
"I am thrilled to be the next head coach of Spokane Shadow U23. The team for me is a great opportunity to continue our club philosophy at a higher level," said Retan. "It is truly special what our club offers, having a full pyramid of development for our players. The U23s can be a good option for former youth players returning from college seasons and some players who have signed for college programs and are seniors in high school.
"We have a strong group of players coming in and we will be looking to compete and leave our stamp on the league. The EPLWA is a good league that I competed in as a player and I know we need to be sharp to compete. I will look to bring my energy and passion for the club and for the game each and every day."
The Cheney, WA, native is no stranger to the Shadow or EPLWA. As a youth player, he was a standout in the Shadow's initial years as a youth club and was a member of the regional pool from 2004-06 in the USL Super Y-League (the nation's first national youth league) and a national pool selection in 2005. He returned to the club initially as a Men’s First Team player in 2014 and would join the club as a coach a year later. He would help lead the team to EPLWA championships in the first two seasons of the league in 2014 and 2015.
"Jesse has been one of the constant voices and leaders for the EPLWA and NPSL teams over the last four years on and off the field, setting a fantastic example for the collegiate and youth players that he has been around,” said Men's First Team General Manager Gerald Barnhart. "His dedication to the program has been amazing when you consider how much he has juggled it with his coaching responsibilities and even managed to meet up with the team for evening games on road trips when youth games on the west side happened to coincide with those contests."
His collegiate playing career saw him play for NWAC powerhouse Peninsula College, where he led the league in assists and earn All-Star recognition in 2008. He returned home to the Spokane area to finish his collegiate career at Whitworth.
Based on his experience as a player in the league and his coaching role for several of the club's older boys age groups, Retan was a natural selection for the post.
“Appointing Jesse as the Head Coach for this team was an easy choice for the club,” said Men’s First Team Head Coach Mike Pellicio. “His ability to draw the best out of players, commitment to the club’s philosophy, and willingness to put others above himself mean that he’s an indispensable person for this club."
Name Changed to Spokane Shadow U23
The club also announced today that moving forward the EPLWA side will be known as Spokane Shadow U23. The change reflects a more seamless integration between the Men’s First Team (NPSL), the U23 team (EPLWA), and the club’s youth programming, ensuring that players from Spokane will have abundant options for their competitive and developmental needs.