OKLAHOMA CITY –– USA Softball is proud to announce the selection of Ron Hackett (Richmond, Va.), Tim Lyon (South Jordan, Utah) and Tony Aresco (Stonham, Mass.) as Head Coaches for the USA Softball Men’s National Team (MNT) program. Selected from the USA Softball MNT Coaching Pool, Hackett will serve as Head Coach for the MNT while Lyon and Aresco will lead the U-23 and U-18 Men’s National Teams, respectively.
“Congratulations to all three coaches on this much-deserved selection as a Head Coach for each of our Men’s National Team Programs,” said USA Softball Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Craig Cress. “The Men’s National Team program has made great strides in developing talent across the U.S. while providing as many opportunities as possible for athletes to compete at a high level. We look forward to having Coach Hackett at the helm of the Men’s National Team in addition to Coach Lyon and Coach Aresco leading the way for the U-23 and U-18 programs.”
Hackett has been involved with USA Softball as both an athlete or coach since 1991. As a player, Hackett competed at the grassroots level in the Men's Open/Major division for Jac n Do's Pizza and continued his playing career through 2002 for teams in the Philadelphia area. Following his playing career, Hackett went on to manage ESA Team in (2013-14) and the Northeast Drillers (2015-16) before joining the coaching staff for the Hallman Twins (2017-current), where he has helped lead the team to two third-place finishes at the USA Softball Men's Major National Championship (2018-2019). Hackett joined the MNT as an Assistant Coach in 2019 and has helped lead the Red, White and Blue to a second-place finish at the Pan American Games and a fifth-place finish at the World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) World Cup during the 2019 season. Hackett was named Head Coach at the end of 2019 upon Coach Gregg Leathers retirement and has led the team in events throughout the United States in 2020.
“It is an absolute pleasure to remain Head Coach for the Men's National Team for the upcoming cycle,” said Hackett. “I look forward to continuing the work needed as we strive for a gold medal in 2022 at the World Championships in New Zealand. I also look forward to expanding our efforts to identify and develop players across the country in striving to attain our goal as a top tier organization in Men's Fastpitch for years to come."
Lyon has been tabbed Head Coach for the inaugural U-23 MNT, marking his seventh stint as Head Coach for the Men’s National Team program. Lyon first joined the USA Softball Men’s National Team Program as an Assistant Coach for the National Team Festival and Pan American Qualifier (1998) and International Softball Federation (ISF) Men’s World Championship (2000) where Team USA earned the Bronze Medal. Selected as Head Coach for the MNT in 2001, Lyon later led the program to their first playoff round appearance since 1985 and a 5-3 record en route to a fifth-place finish at the 2012 World Championship. Two years later at the 2014 edition, the U.S. squad finished with a 7-4 record and a consolation championship under Lyon’s leadership.
“It is an honor to be chosen to help build the first-ever U-23 Men's National Team,” said Lyon. “I believe we have a good pool of players to work with but are always looking for anyone that would like to be considered. We have a lot of work ahead of us as we prepare to qualify for the World Championships in 2022. I am looking forward to working with the USA Softball community to launch this new international division.”
Tony Aresco joins the U-18 MNT with more than 30 years of experience coaching Men’s Fast Pitch and has led his teams to four USA Softball National Championships. A member of the 1998 MNT athlete pool, Aresco began his coaching tenure with USA Softball in 2018 as a Junior Men’s National Team Assistant Coach and has been part of two U-18 WBSC Men’s Softball World Cup (World Championship) coaching staffs.
"I am incredibly excited and humbled for the opportunity to lead the U-18 Men's National Team, and the chance to compete and represent the United States on the highest stage,” said Aresco. “Having been involved as a player and now coach, I have a tremendous amount of respect for the coaches and players within USA Softball and am ready to build a foundation where we can be a contender and consistently compete among the best. I want our program to make USA proud both on and off the field with consistent excellence. I'm very grateful to the USA Softball staff and Men's National Team Selection Committee for this opportunity."
For more information on the USA Softball National Team program, please visit USASoftball.com