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2021-22 Season Head Coaches Bios

Director of Hockey Tony Lessel

Born and raised in St. Louis, MO  Tony enters his sixth season as Director of Hockey for the Jr. Everblades and the eighth year for Hertz Arena. Tony played youth hockey with the Chesterfield Falcons leading to tier 1 for the Jr. Blues and attending Chaminade College Prep. in St. Louis.

Since arriving in Florida in 2008 with a degree in Sport Management, Tony began working with the Florida Panthers in an entry-level sales position. From there he worked his way through the organization.  Within a couple of years, he was running the youth and adult travel/recreation programs out of Panthers Ice Den. Now with the Hertz Arena and the Jr. Everblades, Tony has grown both programs year after year with an emphasis on structure, development, and fun!

A USA Hockey Level 4 coach, Tony has coached numerous state championship teams of all levels over the years and worked with USA Hockey’s player development camps locally. He prides himself on development at the grassroots levels to ensure the stability of this great game in Florida for the future and has been recognized numerous times by USA Hockey for such achievements. Tony looks forward to raising many more championship banners once again this year for the Jr. Everblades.

8U Minor Head Coach Ryan Vesce

Ryan joins the Jr. Everblades organization after a long and successful collegiate and pro career.  Ryan graduated from Cornell University in 2004 and went on to play for 14 years professionally across the NHL, KHL(Russia), AHL, SHL(Sweden), Liiga(Finland), and Switzerland’s NLA and Swiss League.  

Ryan is committed to improving each player and is looking forward to developing their hockey skills, work ethic, discipline, and leadership qualities. 

 

8U Minor Head Coach Matt Spiller

8U Major Head Coach Ernie Hartlieb

Coach Ernie's interest in athletic performance development stems from his extensive career competing in ice hockey.  After a life-threatening hockey injury suffered at 18 years of age with a prognosis that he may never be able to play the game again, his passion for hockey and his desire to succeed expectations fueled his rehabilitation and lead him to become an all-rounded athlete who has garnered respect from coaches and players on all levels.

During his four years of collegiate play for the Miami OH Redhawks (CCHA), he received the Terry Flannagan Humanitarian Award recognizing Ernie's strong character and leadership skills both on and off of the ice.

Having played over a decade in the ECHL including four seasons playing at the AHL level (Worcester IceCats, Grand Rapids Griffins, Lowell Lock Monsters, and Rochester Americans), his eight seasons with the Florida Everblades culminated in the team Captain having his iconic #9 jersey retired.

Coach Ernie's leadership, motivational skills, training skills, and exceptional training ethics bring exciting elements to the Junior Everblades organization.

8U Head Coach Rene' Gauthier

10U A2 Head Coach Austin Petersen

Coach Austin is originally from Los Angeles, California, and has been a part of the Junior Everblades organization for more than ten years.  He is currently working towards his Master's degree in Psychology at FGCU.

Austin played for the Junior Everblades in the 12U through 18U divisions, was selected for the USA Atlantic Developmental Team, and as a defenseman for Florida Gulf Coast University. 

Currently, a USA Hockey Level 4 coach, Austin has been coaching with the Junior Everblades the past five seasons and has been a skating coach with the Hertz Arena Learn to Skate program for the past eight years.  His coaching accomplishments include numerous tournament championships, the SAHOF State 12U A Championship, and  SAHOF State 10A Silver State Championship. 

Austin's coaching philosophy focuses heavily on, creativity, character development, and leadership skills. 

 

10U A1 Head Coach Charlie Linglet

Coach Linglet concluded his 17th professional playing career in 2020.  He has gathered valued experience by playing in some of the strongest leagues in the world (NHL, AHL, KHL to name a few) while having the chance to learn from many experienced coaches along the way.

He begins his 1st year of coaching with the 10U A1 Junior Everblades.  Coach Linglet is proud to join the organization and is very excited to give his expertise to our young generation of players hailing from the Southwest Florida Region.

Coach Linglet wants his players to enjoy the game every time they come to the rink. He will contribute by helping his players develop their skill set, work ethic, team game, and discipline.

10U AA Head Coach Mike Grenzy

12U A2 Head Coach Craig Morton

Originally from the Metro Detroit area, Coach Craig grew up playing youth hockey in Michigan within the Detroit Little Caesars organization.  Following a successful junior hockey career, he played four (4) years of college hockey at Eastern Michigan University, where he received his Bachelor's Degree in Political Science, minoring in Business Administration.

 

Craig is a USA Hockey Certified Level 4 coach; his background includes being a former Head Hockey Instructor for Maximum Development Hockey based out of Windsor, Ontario and currently is a Head Instructor and coach with Southeast Elite Hockey. In addition, he has been a coach within the Junior Everblades organization for over 15 years, dating back to 2006 where his JEB Squirt team won the SAHOF state championship.     

 

Coach Craig's philosophy is based around team culture, skill development, and, most importantly, having fun. 

 

12U A1 Head Coach James Johnstone

Coach James has more than 20 years of experience instructing at hockey clinics and camps from Ontario to Southwest Florida.  

James' coaching tenure with the Junior Everblades began in 2006 leading the Mite AA team and since then he has coached every youth age division. Some notable coaching achievements include winning State Championships at the U18 AAA level in 2008, U12 A in 2018, and U10 A Silver in 2020.

James played minor hockey in Guelph, Ontario, and then for the Junior Everblades. He played junior hockey for the Walkerton Hawks and club hockey for Florida Gulf Coast University. 

Some key components of James’ coaching philosophy include an emphasis on developing strong team chemistry as well as helping each player improve their fundamental skills. Winning AS A TEAM, or at least improving outcomes over the course of the season, is a good measure of whether we are succeeding in our primary objectives, so James likes to win; plus winning is fun.

12U AA Head Coach Keith Anderson

12U AA Head Coach David Lundbohm

David Lundbohm was born in Roseau Minnesota where he played high school hockey. After high school hockey, he played in the USHL, for the Fargo/Morehead Icesharks. After his time in the USHL, he went on to play four years for the University of North Dakota.

Coach Lundbohm started his professional career with the Carolina Hurricanes and was sent to play for the ECHL Florida Everblades. After leaving the Everblades,  the Providence Bruins of the American Hockey League welcomed him aboard.   After leaving the Bruins, David took his game to Europe and played eight seasons throughout Europe before moving back to Florida. During his career, Coach Lundbohm played in over seven hundred games.

He enjoys golfing and has been coaching for JEB for eight seasons!  He and his wife Sabrina, their children Weston, Ellie, and Dane live in South Fort Myers.

14U A Head Coach Keith Van Damme

Keith comes to us from Crystal Lake, IL with a wealth of coaching and clinic experience.

It all began in Superior, Wisconsin for Keith at a young age and developed into playing at the University of Wisconsin Superior. He has coached and developed players for over 35 years with USA Hockey Level 5 Master certification and IIHF certificate in Training Theory.

He’s known as one of the finest hockey clinicians in the Midwest and has volunteered many summers working with players of all ages and levels. He has a proven track record of commended performance coaching at the youth and high school levels, with a passion for amateur hockey and commitment to optimizing an unwavering team, players, and organizational success.

Keith’s overall coaching philosophy remains the same no matter what level the players are at; make sure the kids are having fun and skills development.

14U AA Head Coach Pete Flores

16U AA Head Coach Tony Lessel

Born and raised in St. Louis, MO  Tony enters his sixth season as Director of Hockey for the Jr. Everblades and the eighth year for Hertz Arena. Tony played youth hockey with the Chesterfield Falcons leading to tier 1 for the Jr. Blues and attending Chaminade College Prep. in St. Louis.

Since arriving in Florida in 2008 with a degree in Sport Management, Tony began working with the Florida Panthers in an entry-level sales position. From there he worked his way through the organization.  Within a couple of years, he was running the youth and adult travel/recreation programs out of Panthers Ice Den. Now with the Hertz Arena and the Jr. Everblades, Tony has grown both programs year after year with an emphasis on structure, development, and fun!

A USA Hockey Level 4 coach, Tony has coached numerous state championship teams of all levels over the years and worked with USA Hockey’s player development camps locally. He prides himself on development at the grassroots levels to ensure the stability of this great game in Florida for the future and has been recognized numerous times by USA Hockey for such achievements. Tony looks forward to raising many more championship banners once again this year for the Jr. Everblades.

Lady JEB Coach Kiley Fewster

Born and raised in Fort Myers, FL, Kiley enters her first year of coaching. She grew up playing Junior Everblades from U10 to U16. After that, she went off to play hockey at Northfield Mount Hermon Prep School in Gill, MA. Following high school, she went on to start the first NCAA D3 women’s ice hockey team at Hobart and William Smith Colleges in Geneva, NY in 2014. She received the Heron Award, the Women’s Hockey Team award, and a Strength and Conditioning All American Award during her four years there. Since then, she has gone on to obtain her nursing degree and is currently a nurse at Health Park Hospital.

Kiley desires to help grow girls' hockey in the town she grew up in and helped her to a successful college hockey career. Being a part of the inauguration of two womens' hockey programs was a huge honor for her. She brings her dedication, competitive spirit, and love of the game to her team. 

Lady JEB Coach Seana Perkins

Hello! My name is Seana Perkins, and I am a goalie from Fort Myers. I am currently a junior at FGCU majoring in Secondary Social Science Education. In high school, I attended a boarding school, Kimball Union Academy in NH where I played varsity ice hockey, field hockey, and softball. My goal is to graduate and move back to New England to teach and coach ice hockey at a boarding school. As a kid, I played for the Miami Toros, Florida Eels, and Kissimmee Lady Vipers. I only got to play girls hockey for two years before going to prep school. All I wanted was a team and a coaching staff that were women. I hope to be a mentor, advocate, and friend to these young girls that so badly need representation in Florida. 

Goalie Coach Kyle Hayton

Please join us in welcoming Goalie Coach Kyle Hayton to the Junior Everblades Staff.  

Coach Hayton grew up playing youth hockey in Colorado for multiple teams including the Colorado Thunderbirds. He moved on to play high school at Shattuck St. Mary’s in Minnesota where he won two National Championships.

Kyle then played juniors in the USHL for the Sioux City Musketeers for two years. He committed to play NCAA D-1 for St. Lawrence University. After his junior year, Kyle graduated early and completed a transfer to the University of Wisconsin where he played his senior season as a Badger while completing graduate courses.

Kyle’s college career produced many achievements including All-American, multiple Hobey Baker finalist, multiple Richter Award finalist, Ken Dryden Award, Rookie of the Year, multiple NCAA All-Star Team, and many more. Following his final college season, Kyle signed in the AHL for the Milwaukee Admirals. He continued on to play for the Fort Wayne Komets, Allen Americans, and Greenville Swamp Rabbits in the ECHL over 2 seasons. During the 2nd Pro season, Kyle suffered a career-ending elbow injury.

Over the course of Kyle’s playing career, he has coached all ages from youth up to professional and has run goalie camps and private lessons with a variety of different coaches and camps including Mitch Korn, Shattuck St. Mary’s Camps, ITC Goaltending, Devenir Goaltending, Josh Robinson, and others. In addition to coaching, Kyle has gathered years of experience and knowledge of the goaltending position from numerous top goalie coaches from across the country.

Coach Kyle is extremely excited to pass his knowledge and expertise to the goalies of the Jr. Everblades and have a lot of fun in the process.