Meet Our Coaches

Meet Our Staff

We are here to provide you and your family with the best youth soccer experience possible! We are proud to bring you a group of highly accomplished coaches and administrators. Read the bios below to learn more about your coach and other leaders in our community.

Rob Marinaro

Director of Coaching
Coach - U9 Boys

Phone: 330-622-7600
Office: 330-672-8425

Email: rmarinar@kent.edu



One of the longest-tenured coaches in the Mid-American Conference, Rob Marinaro enters his 12th season as Kent State’s head women’s soccer coach in 2012 and his 16th season with the program.

A goalkeeper by trade, Marinaro spent five seasons (1993-97) playing with various teams in the National Professional Soccer League, finishing his professional career with the Cleveland Crunch. He also played for the Harrisburg Heat, Buffalo Blizzard and Chicago Power. He was selected to the NPSL All-Rookie Team in 1994 and was the runner-up for Rookie of the Year honors as a member of the Power. Marinaro first played professionally with the Toronto Blizzard of the American Professional Soccer League from 1992-93. His brother Hector, currently the men’s soccer coach at John Carroll University, is the all-time leader in points and goals in Major Indoor Soccer League (MISL) history.

 In addition, Marinaro served as a coach for the Ohio State North team for the Olympic Development Program and was a member of the ODP Region II staff. He also worked at the Cleveland Crunch Summer Camps in 1995 and 1996. Currently, he is the director of coaching for the Stow Soccer Club.

 A native of Toronto, Ontario, Marinaro received his master’s degree in sports administration from Kent State in the summer of 2001. He graduated from Clemson University in 1992 with a bachelor’s degree in language and international trade and was a member of the Tigers’ 1987 national championship team. Marinaro currently holds a United States Soccer Federation National “B” Coaching License.

 He resides in Stow with his wife, Michele, and their son, Michael (12).

Pat Sweeney

Youth Recreational Academy
Coach - U11/U12 Boys 

Phone: 440-479-9061

Email: psweene3@kent.edu





The 2012 campaign marks the fifth season on the Kent State sidelines for assistant coach Patrick Sweeney. A veteran among the club soccer circles throughout Ohio, Sweeney boasts over 20 years of Olympic development and club soccer coaching experience to the Kent State program.

 Since 1987, the 25-year NSCAA member has served as an Olympic Development coach for the Ohio Youth Soccer Association. In 1997, he joined the United States Youth Soccer Region II Olympic Development Program and has been a member of the girls and boys coaching staff for the past 12 years.

The British Columbia product was named the 1996 Greater Cleveland Public High School Coach of the Year at Shaker Heights while also picking up Lake Erie League COY honors. He then earned the Greater Cleveland Private High School COY award in 2000 with the Hawken School when he lead the team to a state championship and was a two time Chagrin Valley Conference COY in 2000 and 2001. In 2005 he guided his 91/92 Girls team to the Super Y League National Championship and one year later took a 91/92 Girls team to a US Club Soccer Region A Championship.

 A veteran of the Northeast Ohio premier club soccer scene, Sweeney most recently spent five years as the Director of Coaching for the Cleveland Whitecaps Premier Soccer Club. While a member of the Whitecaps staff, he was selected as the 2005 Coach of the Year. Sweeney also spent six years coaching with the East-West Soccer Club where he instructed various age groups along with coordinating arrangements for travel and summer camps.

A student of the game, Sweeney has a NSCAA Advanced Diploma and holds an ‘A’ level coaching license with the United States Soccer Federation as well as a USSF National Youth license.

 Following his graduation from Howe Secondary School, the Vancouver native played three seasons for the Cleveland Force Reserve MISL Professional Team before moving on to Cleveland State University.

 Sweeney and his wife Terri, have a daughter Shayla and a son Keenan. Sweeney earned a bachelor’s degree of general studies from Kent State in 2011 with minors in conflict management and athletic coaching.

Abby Richter

Coach U9  Girls

Phone: 330-904-0867

Email: arichter@kent.edu



With the start of the 2012 campaign, Abby Richter is in her seventh season with the Kent State staff after rejoining the program as an assistant coach in April 2008. Richter, who previously served on the Golden Flashes staff as a graduate assistant under head coach Rob Marinaro from 2003-04, returned to Kent State after spending the previous two seasons at Ball State University.

Richter also brings expertise as a collegiate goalkeeper. In 2010, Richter added to her soccer accreditation when she received an Advanced National Diploma from the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA).

Along with her work at Kent State, Richter has also coached elite soccer players internationally. In 2013, Richter will serve as the head coach for the United States Women’s Open team at the 19th Maccabiah Games in Israel. It will mark the third time Richter will be on the coaching staff for the United States.

Richter’s collegiate coaching career includes stops at Ball State, Iowa and Earlham College; she also served as an assistant varsity coach at Southwest High School in Green Bay, Wis.

A 2001 graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, Richter earned a bachelor’s degree in broad field social science and history. She received her master’s degree in sports and recreational management from Kent State in 2005.

During her collegiate playing career, Richter (then Rabinovitz) starred on the field at UW-Stevens Point as a goalkeeper and four-year starter guiding the team to four consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances and a 44-0 conference record. As a senior, she led the Pointers to the NCAA Division III Final Four and was a First Team Central Region All-America selection.

Richter obtained a NSCAA Goalkeeping Level One diploma and received her USSF D License. She has been a NSCAA member since 2002.

Richter and her husband Jeremy reside in Stow with their daughter, Grace.
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