Tony Foti, Head Coach
Foti is currently in his 4th year as the assistant softball coach at Middle Tennessee State University. Coaching for over 35 years, with 21 years of international coaching experience and 20 years of college softball.
Foti spent the previous 7 years coaching professionally in Europe, Asia, Central and South America and Africa. In that position, Foti traveled the globe conducting elite coaches/player clinics and national team development camps. Foti has also served as Canadian National Team coach from 1985-1996 and again from 2005-2012, coaching in World Championships, Pan-Am Games, World Cups and the 1996 Olympic Games. In 2007 and 2008, Foti helped lead Forli in the Italian Championships and European Cup Championship.
Coach Foti fine-tuned his coaching expertise at the federally funded National Coaching Institute in Canada. There, he completed the prestigious advanced coaching program. The program stresses both the technical and theoretical aspects of coaching, and takes several years to complete. Foti has earned the title of Master Clinician, and conducts player and coaches courses. Foti has published numerous technical documents and coaching articles. Speaker at over 100 coaches clinics.
In the spring of 2001, Foti accepted the opportunity to be the head softball coach at Mercer University. Two years later, he was selected Atlantic Sun Coach of the Year after leading Mercer to a 35-23 record, advancing the Bears to their first Atlantic Sun tournament berth since 1997, and conference championship in 2003. The ASUN conference awarded Foti the coach of the year award again in 2006. Foti has also served a coach at UC Santa Barbara for seven years where the Gauchos captured the Big West Conference in 2000, a first for UCSB. Also winning the Big West coaching staff of the year in 2000.
Foti also coached U18, U21 and women’s open teams in club ball to Canadian National Championships and USA/ASA 18U Gold national championships. Foti also served as a coach of the Michigan Ice expansion NPF team in 2005.
Foti played men’s fastpitch before starting his coaching career as an assistant at Valley City College in 1985. He earned his first head coaching position at Red River College in 1986, winning the Canadian Community College National Championship. Foti continued playing men’s Fastpitch softball through the 1997 season.
Foti sits on several national and international coaches’ development committees. Foti has been inducted into the Manitoba Sports Hall-of-Fame,
Foti holds a BA in Education Administration. He has a daughter Devyn and a son Dayne.
“I am honored with the Greek Softball Federation and president Kostis’ trust and selection to coach the Greek Women’s National Team for the 2017 European Championships and world championship qualifier. We will create a world class coaching staff dedicated to the success and vision of this program. As we (softball) return to the Olympic Games in 2020, our work in the identification and development of athletes and creating a successful culture begins today. The process to world qualification and hopefully Olympic qualification begins with the commitment of the Greek Federation to this project and this staff”.
Angel Santiago, Assistant Coach – Hitting
Angel Santiago is in his sixth season as the head coach of the Nicholls State University softball program.
In 2016, Santiago was named Southland Conference Coach of the Year.
Prior to joining Nicholls in September of 2011, Santiago, a native of Chicago Heights, Ill., was an assistant coach for eight years at Florida State and the University of Nevada Las Vegas (UNLV).
A former minor league baseball player, Santiago spent three seasons at Florida State as an assistant for the Seminole softball program. Santiago is known as a specialist in hitting and catching.
Before joining Florida State in 2009, Santiago helped rebuild a struggling UNLV program during his five years in Las Vegas. In 2005, the Rebels recorded their third-highest win total (44) in the program’s history. That year the UNLV coaching staff received the West Region Coaching Staff of the Year honor presented by the NFCA.
Coach Santiago is a very active instructor with hitting clinics, coaching presentations, and sports fitness academies across the country. Santiago began his coaching career as the head baseball coach at Prairie State College in his hometown of Chicago Heights, Ill. Prior to his two-year stint with Prairie State Baseball, he played four seasons of minor league baseball in the independent leagues with the Dubios County Dragons (IN), Cook County Cheetahs (IL), Thunder Bay Whiskey Jacks (CAN), and Canton Crocodiles (OH). While playing Santiago was named to the Heartland League All Star Team in 1996 and crowned the league leader in batting average (.374) in 1997.
A graduate of Southern Illinois-Edwardsville, Coach Santiago studied Physical Education and is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS). He also earned certificates from USA Weightlifting and USA Track & Field which have helped him develop athletes in all disciplines of sport.
“I’m very thankful for the opportunity to help the Greek National Softball Federation prepare for the 20th European Championship in Bollate, Italy. This championship will be an incredible experience for the players and coaches participating”.
Shane Showalter, Assistant Coach – Defence
Shane Showalter is in his second season as the head coach at Austin Peay State University after serving three seasons (2013-15) as the program’s assistant coach.
Prior to coming to Austin Peay, Showalter, served as Colorado State-Pueblo’s head coach for 10 seasons and left CSU-Pueblo as the winningest coach in program history, gaining his 200th ThunderWolves victory in 2011 on his way to 244 career victories.
Under Showalter’s direction, the CSU-Pueblo program became a consistent contender in the Division II Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference, finishing second in his last season while being named RMAC Coach of the Year. In his last six seasons, CSU-Pueblo qualified for the RMAC Tournament each season, finishing second twice (2006, 2007).
Prior to serving as the ThunderWolves’ head coach, Showalter held the same position at Division III Colorado College (1999-2002), a non-scholarship program in Colorado Springs. Before arriving at Colorado College, he was an assistant coach at his alma mater Adams State (Alamosa, Colo.) from 1996-98.
Off the softball field, he served as assistant grounds keeper from 1999-02 for the Colorado Springs Sky Sox, the Colorado Rockies Triple A affiliate.
Showalter earned both his bachelor’s (Sports and Exercise Management) and master’s (Exercise Physiology) at Adams State.
He has a daughter, Maison.
“I just want to thank the Greek Federation, President Kostis, and Coach Foti for this incredible opportunity. I am very excited to be a part of this coaching staff and organization. I am looking forward to the chance to connect with everyone involved in this journey”.
Shan McDonald, Assistant Coach – Pitching
McDonald comes from an illustrious college and international playing and coaching career. McDonald was the Head softball coach at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas for 17 years, leading the ‘Runnin Rebels’ to the college world series in 1990, 1993 and 1994.
McDonald came to UNLV in 1987 from Texas A&M, where she both played and coached softball for the perennial power and legendary coach Bob Brock. The 1983 Texas A&M Player of the Year led the Aggies to back-to-back national titles, an AIAW title in 1982 and an NCAA crown in ‘83. McDonald also played for the Canadian National team, leading them to the 1983 Pan American Games Championship, the first ever for Canada.
McDonald was a coach with the 1996 Canadian Olympic team, Canadian Junior National Team Head coach from 2001 to 2005 and assistant coach with the Junior and Senior Canadian teams from 2005 to 2012.
Upon leaving UNLV, she went on to be Head Softball Coach for the 2004 Chinese Olympic Team which finished fourth.
Currently a Physical Education teacher in Middle School, Clinician/Facilitator for Synergy Team Concepts, Co-Head Softball Coach for the only 18U Gold team in Nevada and private softball instructor. Continues to have extensive involvement with the development of softball as a coach and clinician for the International Softball Federation.
Graduated from Texas A & M with Bachelor of Science in Physical Education and minor in Biology in 1983. Has a Masters degree in Technology in Education.
“I am honored and excited for the opportunity to work with the Greek Softball Federation along with a great coaching staff and group of elite athletes in our venture for success at the European Championships this summer”.
Candida Cerri, Assistant Coach – Bench Coach/Operations
Candida Cerri joins the Greek National team after coaching and playing for the Italian National Team. Certified as a national team coach and pitching coach. Cerri was the pitching coach and bench coach of the Italian U13 team that won the European Championships in 2009.
A valued clinician and speaker, Cerri has lectured at the Italian Softball and Baseball Coaches Convention and conducted camps throughout Italy and Europe. Cerri introduced innovative team building and culture developing into the Italian National Team Program.
Cerri began her coaching career in 2001 with the Legnano Softball Club, leading them to an Italian B series national championship and promotion into the A2 league in 2003. Cerri also led the Valmarecchia women’s B team to promotion to A2 in 2013. Cerri was named as the pitching coach for the Italian U19 National team in 2013.
Cerri played for the Italian National Team from 1984 to 1991, pitcher and first baseman, winning the 1988 European Championship competing in the1986 ISF World Championships in Aukland, New Zealand and again the 1990 ISF World Championships in Normal, IL. Cerri also competed for the Bollate, Legnano, Bologna, Forli and Valmarecchia teams winning national or regional championships.
Cerri has a diploma in Graphic Design. Cerri has three daughters, Emma, Susanna and Dora.
“I’m honored to be part of this high level coaching staff after a few years of forced absence from the field. I’ll put all my experience in this project, helped by the fact that the European championship will be held in my hometown”
Babis Trigonakis, Assistant Coach/Trainer
Babis’ athletic career started in 1976 as a track and field athlete in Panionios Club. He was Greek National Champion in the high jump and a member of the Greek Track and Field National team. After his career as an athlete, he became the track and field coach at Panionios Club.
Babis began coaching Softball in 2005 as head coach of the then newly formed Faros Neas Smyrnis Club and developed the team into Greek National Champions in 2013. He was a member of the coaching staff for the Greek Cadet National Team in 2007, the U22 Women’s National Team in 2014, that won the bronze medal in the European U22 Championships and the Women’s National team in 2015, winning gold at the Balkan Championships. Babis has a University degree in Physical Education from the Kapodistrian University of Athens.
Denise Horafa, Team Manager
Denise has been involved with Softball in Greece since its very beginning both as a player and as a Coach/Team Manager. As a player Denise is a four time Greek National Champion and a two time Greek Cup Winner. She has played in numerous European Cup and Cup Winners tournaments with her biggest success being the silver medal in the 2007 B Pool European Cup Winners Cup tournament held in the Athens Olympic Venue & the participation in the following years’ A Pool tournament held in Italy.
Denise is currently a player and Assistant coach at the Dafni Palaiou Falirou Club and is also involved in the coaching and development of future Softball athletes. She was the U22 Women’s National Team Manager that won the bronze medal in the 2014 U22 European Championship in Dupnitsa, Bulgaria & Assistant Coach in the Women’s Balkan Softball Championship where the National team took home the gold medal undefeated. Denise was born in the United States and has a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Information Systems from the American College of Greece.
Malvina Georgaka, Nutrition Consultant
Malvina has a bachelor degree in Biology from National & Kapodistrian University of Athens. She is specialized in Clinical Nutrition and Dietology (MSc in Applied Nutrition and Dietetics from Harokopio University&. She currently works as a consultant of nutrition and physical well-being in a private practice in Athens. Malvina has been participating in national and international conferences regarding biology, nutrition and medicine since 2005. Over the past three years she has been an active member of a nutrition specialists team supporting marathon runners: 31st Athens Classic marathon 2013, 32nd Athens Classic Marathon 2014, 11th Panhellenic 100km Race 2015, 4th Athens Half Marathon 2015 and 16th Euchidios Athlos 2015.
As softball is a highly competitive and dynamic game which requires a mix of strength, speed, power and agility, in addition to quick judgement and sharp focus, Malvina will be providing valuable nutritional support to the women’s team. The right fueling strategies through nutrition and hydration have an effective impact on maximizing the players’ training and performance. She has always been a team sports fan and was a member and athlete of Agios Thomas Goudi Basketball team.