Western Mass Pioneers 20th Anniversary Team

Celebrating the 20 Best Players in Pioneers History



Pat Boucher

Patrick Boucher has been a rock in the Pioneers defense since 2004. From Cromwell, CT, Pat is a consummate team player and has an uncanny ability to gain possession of the ball and to pass it right on target. Pat stated “I’ve had some of the best times I can remember on the field while playing with the Pioneers. Mostly, I am glad to have made long lasting friends like Federico Molinari, Jay Willis, Maxi Viera, Dan Fabian, and Evan Burokas. I am looking forward to this season and the Open Cup.”


Evan Burokas
Evan, from Auburn MA and Merrimack College joined the Pioneers in 2012 and has been a midfield standard ever since. Evan is a natural leader, and is able to distribute the ball anywhere on the field. Evan stated that  “I am humbled and very honored to be recognized in the Pioneers top 20 players. Playing for this club, this community, and for Federico has been an amazing opportunity and I can’t thank the Pioneers family enough for what they’ve provided me over the past 7 years. The Pioneers community has a long standing history of many great teams, players and coaches who have all become like family to me. And it is that type of community and unwavering bond that makes this club so special to play for."   

Michael Butler
Michael only played one season for the Pioneers, but what a season it was! Michael, from Springfield MA and coming out of UMass, played in our inaugural season and quickly put the Pioneers on the map. In 1998, when the Pioneers played in the USISL D-3 Pro League,  Michael was the league scoring champion (39), goal scoring champion (15), Rookie of the Year and All League First Team. Michael left the Pioneers to play at the USL A-League team the Pittsburgh Riverhounds.

Jeff Deren
Jeff Deren was an outstanding striker and played over 100 games with the club. Jeff says "The Western Mass Pioneers will always hold a special place in my soccer memory. Having played over 100 games in front of family, friends and some of the greatest supporters in the country was unbelievable. There is such a rich history and mystique around the club and Lusitano Stadium, to be remembered as one of the all-time greats is an incredible honor." 

Danny Fabian

Danny Fabian makes the 20th Anniversary Team! Danny, from Southbury CT joined the Pioneers in 2014 out of Providence College. Danny is a silky smooth midfielder that is a tireless worker with a great first touch. He always seems to find the open man to make the perfect past.  Danny states “I am incredibly honored to have been selected amongst multitudes of talented players that have played with the club. A special thank you to the selection committee for choosing me to be a part of this 20th Anniversary team.”


Kyle Fletcher

Kyle was a dynamic defender who played with us between 1999-2005.  He said: "I am truly honored and proud to be named to the Western Mass Pioneers top 20 players list on the 20th Anniversary of our Club and Team.  The Gremio Lusitano represents more than just a stadium to me.  It is the meeting place where the families of Ludlow would come to cheer on their beloved team and enjoy a night out under the lights of the Gremio.  I had the pleasure of experiencing 7 great years with the Pioneers, playing some great futbol with some very talented players and devoted Professionals.   My days playing at the Lusitano Stadium were by far my best years as a player.  My family and I have many fond memories of the supportive and friendly people in and around the town that stood by me during my time in Ludlow.  Joe and Juanita Testori, Eddie and Suzanne Tremble, Brad Miller, Paul Kelly....it was like having a family away from home.   And who can forget the 1999 Championship Season or the 2005 National Final or the chance to play the Chicago Fire in the US Open Cup.   Thank you Rick Andre and Leszek Wrona for giving a young Canadian a chance to realize a lifelong dream of winning a Championship as a Professional and Captaining the 2005 National Finalist Team.   I will never forget our days together on and off the pitch or the wonderful fans, families and friends I had the opportunity to meet, some of which are my closest friends today.  Thank you again, the Pioneers will forever have a place in the hearts of the Fletcher family."


Robbie Jachym
Robbie played for the Pioneers for a blistering 6 season (1999-2004). A consummate professional, Robbie could score seemingly at will.  From Mielec, Poland, he was an All-American at the University of Hartford, and played for the Columbus Crew and the New England Revolution in MLS.  Robbie scored 55 goals over 90 games for the Pioneers, including the game winning goal for the 1999 USL D-3 Pro League championship. He also made the 1999 All League First Team, and in 2003 was the USL Pro Select League MVP, Scoring Champion, Goal Scoring Champion, and All League First Team. He is still considered the best player ever to wear the Pioneers shirt.

Paul Kelly

Paul Kelly named to the 20th Anniversary Team! Paul was an excellent defender here from 1999-2002. He says "Playing with the Pioneers was the most fun I ever had playing soccer. The support of the fans, the history of Gremio Lusitano stadium, the greatest teammates, and winning...It's really cool to be selected for this honor, thank you. I'm looking forward to a great event in August and partying like it's 1999!"

Greg Kolodziey
Greg has been with the Pioneers since year one, playing with the team from 1998-2003, and then shifted over to become the team general manager and assistant coach.  
Greg was a soccer standout from Ludlow, and also had a stellar career with Syracuse University, where he participated in the 1986 Senior Bowl, made the 1984 Big East All-Tournament Team,  is their team leading Goals Per Season record holder with 18 goals in 1986, is tied for second on the Points Per Season with 39 in 1986, and holds many other records.  Greg also played for numerous successful Gremio Lusitano teams. Greg states "obviously,  it's an honor to be selected having played in the twilight of my career with the Pioneers.  There have been just so many great players, coaches, administrators, media people, and volunteers over the last twenty years to have helped grow the Pioneers brand to where we are today.  And of course the fans in Western Mass are some of the most loyal and dedicated as there are in the country. The electricity at Lusitano Stadium on game night is rarely matched in other venues."

Everson Maciel
Everson played here 2004-2008 at midfield and made 2004, 2005, and 2006 All League First Team, 2007 All League Second Team, and named #9 on the USL Second Division Top Team of the Decade! He stated that "It is an honor to be on the Top 20 Players for such a great club. Western Mass Pioneers has the best soccer environment in the country. For me it was always a pleasure playing for the club. There is no way to not give 110% in every game when you play at Lusitano stadium. Thanks to everyone involved within the club. You are the best!"

Brad Miller
Brad, from Longmeadow and out of UMass, played on the team from their inaugural season in 1998 to 2004. Playing as a defender, he had an uncanny ability to read the play defensively and start the attack out of the back. Offensively he was always a threat in the air on crosses and set pieces.  

Federico Molinari
Federico was an exceptional midfielder who could drop back to defend or push the attack. Federico, from La Plata, Argentina, played six season here (2003, 2006-2010), and is currently the Pioneers Head Coach, (2012-2014, 2016-present).  Federico is also Director of Coaching for the Western United Pioneers.  "When I arrived here in 2003, I never imagined that I would one day be the Head Coach here" commented Federico.  "The soccer community immediately made me feel welcome and appreciated.  I have a lot of passion and appreciation for the Pioneers and the Gremio Lusitano."

Ricardo Monje
Ricardo Monje, from Santiago, Chile, joined the Pioneers in 1999 and immediately made his presence felt.  A midfield wizard, he could creatively slot the ball anywhere and was always pressing towards the goal.  Ricardo played for many professional teams in Chile before joining the Pioneers for three seasons, scoring 12 goals.

Bryan O'Quinn

Bryan played here  2002-2005 (4 seasons) and in 2005 set the season record for GAA and shutouts 

He stated that "I have a wonderful love, admiration, and respect for the Pioneers organization.  For this team and club to achieve 20 years of success is a testament to the great leadership and devote passion that the organization has to the growth and development of the game.  I grew up in Agawam Massachusetts.  But I fell in love with soccer, the Lusitano Club, and Ludlow at a very early age.  Roughly when I was 10 years old, Tony Salvador and Joe Alves, recruited me to play for their Lusitano club team.  I cannot thank them enough for seeing potential in me and helping me develop my game.  Over the next 10 years I had the opportunity to play with the Lusitano club, the Jr Pioneers, and the Lusitano Whites and every day I had a chance to play a game at Lusitano Stadium was a special experience for me, no matter if it was in my days as a youth, or as a professional.  The community in Ludlow, is like no other soccer community I have ever experienced.  It didn’t matter if I was playing a men’s league game for the Lusitano Whites or a Pro game with the Pioneers, the fans and residents of this wonderful town always came out to support their team.  There was a wonderful camaraderie and family feel to playing in our stadium and to this day I miss the experience of playing in goal with fans hanging over the chain linked fence around the field yelling support to our teams!

 

As for my days with the Pioneers, I was honored to play professionally for the club that I had played my entire meaningful youth career for.  I loved working with Rick (Anthony), Greg K, Lesek, and John Voight, throughout my career!  As aforementioned, it was an absolute pleasure stepping on the pitch to play every home game for our team.  There was a special feeling coming out of the locker rooms on game day and hearing the joy and support of our fans there behind us.  Not only were the fans wonderful for us on the field, but many would stay after the game to share stories, talk about the game, and to interact with us players.  It was an outstanding experience and I appreciated the bond that I made with the fans and with my teammates.  I played with some wonderful professionals and friends, and our memories and experiences together will never be forgotten.   I appreciate everything that the Lusitano club has done for me over the years, I spent my youth at the Stadium, and the Ludlow community helped me to understand the importance of passion and family.   I greatly appreciate this honor, but more importantly I appreciate the opportunity and love that this club and community offered to me over the years!


Danny Pires

Danny played here from 1999-2003 as a GK.  He states "I'm honored to be part of the Western Mass Pioneers 20th Anniversary Team.  The Pioneers will always have a special place in my heart especially with Ludlow being my hometown and being able to play in front of all my family and friends.  We had a great group of guys and shared many fantastic memories and accomplishments.  There is no better place to play than at Lusitano Stadium!"


James Proctor
James played here 2002-2003 at midfield. He was the 2002 USL D3 Pro League Assist Leader and made All League First Team. He was also the 2003 Assist Leader. He says "playing for the Pioneers was an amazing experience that I'll never forget! I loved the community, supporters, organization and was privileged to play with some tremendous players that I'm still friends with to this day."

Maxi Viera

Maxi Viera started playing here in 2013 and immediately made an impact. This dynamic midfielder can do it all – defend, pass and shoot. From Montevideo, Uruguay, Maxi came here straight from the University of Rio Grande. He also won the 2016 Goal of the PDL Playoffs. Maxi said “I want to thank the Pioneers for giving me a chance to be a part of this huge event and have the opportunity to play alongside great players that represented the club in the past.”


John Voight
John Voight makes our 20th Anniversary Team! John was our starting goalie from 1998-99.  John was on the 1999 National Championship Team and was also named the National Championship MVP, and later coached the Pioneers from 2001-03, and 2002 Division Champions. John said “What a great honor it is to be chosen to the Pioneers 20th anniversary team! Winning the national championship at Lusitano Stadium in front of thousands of our fans was the highlight of my playing career. We had an incredible group of players who all had a great passion for the game and winning. We were also very fortunate to be a part of such a tremendous organization and play in a fantastic environment and for the best fans in Soccer Town USA!"  I would like to thank GM Kolodziey for setting up this fantastic event, Celso Correia for his vision and fortitude in building this club, to the Gremio Lusitano for their support, Rick Andre for facilitating our success and John Ingalls for assisting me during my coaching tenure. Best wishes for the upcoming season!" John is also returning to the Pioneers this year as the GK coach!

Jay Willis 
Jay joined the Pioneers in 2005 as a defender and has been a Pioneers fixture for over 15 seasons. Now Jay helps develop future soccer professionals as an assistant coach with the team.  Jay, from Ludlow, was a longtime captain, and able to organize the defense and move the ball forward. Jay also had incredible athleticism and able to mark any player, and had a phenomenal ability to head the ball, either out of danger or into the goal.
Jay Willis

Paul Wright

Paul, a native of the Rock of Gibraltar, was a silky-smooth forward who scored 22 goals over 55 games from 1999-2002.  Before joining the Pioneers, Paul set many goal scoring records for Central Connecticut State University.  He also has played with the Philadelphia Kixx (MISL) and Real Balonpedica (Spanish Segunda B). Currently he is the head soccer coach at the University of Saint Joseph.  Paul stated “playing on the 99 Championship team for Leszek and the Western Mass Pioneers was an honor, some of my favorite memories in soccer, great teammates playing in a wonderful soccer community."