COACHING STAFF

JIM CARDELLO

Managing Member of Play the Game, LLC

Jim Cardello owns Play the Game indoor baseball and softball practice facility. Before opening, and running Play the Game, Cardello was the assistant coach of the UMass Lowell (River Hawks) softball team from 2009-11. Working with the River Hawks hitting, the teams’ batting average jumped over 80 points, and their number of home runs in one season almost doubled.

Since opening the doors at Play the Game, Jim has become the Head Softball Coach at Divison II Merrimack College in North Andover, MA.  He is a eight-year coaching veteran of collegiate softball programs and a 14-year coaching veteran.

Prior to Merrimack College and UMASS Lowell, Jim had a two-year stint as assistant softball coach at Tufts University (2007-09), where he worked primarily with bunters and slappers, as well as outfielders. The Jumbos earned an impressive 85-13 record during his two seasons on board and earned two NCAA Regional berths and one World Series trip. The Jumbos were ranked No. 4 in the final 2009 NFCA national poll.

From 2002-07, he was the head baseball coach at Daniel Webster College and racked up the most games coached and most wins in program history. Prior to his time at DWC, Cardello was the head baseball coach at New England College from 1994-98.

A graduate of Southern New Hampshire University, Cardello was a student-athlete for the Penmen from 1988-91 and returned in 2002 to complete a  bachelor’s degree in business administration, and is currently working on his masters degree. While at Southern New Hampshire, Cardello was a standout baseball player and was named the team’s Most Valuable Player as a rookie. He was the only freshman in school history, on any athletic team, to earn that honor. He was named to both the All-Region and All-Conference teams, as well. He is still ranked number two with single-season home runs with 6 in his freshman season.

Professionally, he served as the third base coach for the Nashua Pride baseball team of the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball from 1998-99. He also coached women’s baseball in the North American Women’s Baseball League from 2006-08.

He is a 16U coach for the Granite State Gamers Softball Organization.


KRISTA MACKENZIE

12U Coordinator / Softball Instructor

medium_UML_softball__headshots__0245MacKenzie, who graduated in 2013 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration, spent four seasons with the River Hawks. She earned three Northeast-10 All-Conference Team Honors, starting with a berth on the NE-10 All-Rookie Team as a freshman, an all-conference second team spot as a sophomore and an all-conference first team honor as a senior. In her final campaign, she also earned All-East Region Second Team distinction.

MacKenzie left UMass Lowell tied for first in the all-time record books in runs scored, tied for second in at-bats, third in hits, ninth in RBI, second in stolen bases, third in batting average, and second in on-base percentage.

MacKenzie graduated from UMass Lowell with a Bachelors Degree in Business Administration.


RYAN BEAL

Baseball Instructor/Strength & Conditioning

Ryan BealRyan Beal is available to work with baseball and softball players on hitting, fielding, baseball pitching, and catching, as well as strength & conditioning programs for ball players. Before working with Play the Game, Ryan played college baseball at Ohlone College (JUCO) in California before heading to Central Connecticut State University on a baseball scholarship before transferring to St. Anselm College. Before concussions sidelined Ryan beginning in his sophomore year of college, Ryan was an elite catching prospect getting looked at by several MLB teams.

Beal was an All-State player at Goffstown High School. He played on the 2010 American Legion State Championship Team from Goffstown, leading that team in hitting. Ryan also played summer stints in the Futures League as well as with the Keene Swamp Bats in the NECBL. Ryan posted numerous pop-times sub 1.9 seconds as a catcher known for his defense. Ryan was also an accomplished hitter who ran a sub 6.9 60-yard-dash.

While Ryan was still playing ball he started incorporating workout routines and programs through Cressey Sports Performance. These programs were highly effective and added speed, strength, and explosiveness to Ryan’s game. Now he offers the opportunity to players who want to raise the bar of their own game by helping them develop personal workout programs to build speed, strength, and explosiveness.

Beal still lives in Goffstown and has graduated from St. Anselm College with a degree in Natural Science. Ryan is hoping to continue his pursuit of education and his passion for Life Sciences as he looks at Medical Schools to attend in 2016. He still works out often, coaches baseball when and where he can help out, and loves to pass on America’s Pastime to those who want to work at it.


MARC PANTAZIS

Baseball Instructor

Marc Pantazis is a 2000 graduate of the University of Maine, and a Black Bear catcher for two years.  Prior to becoming a Black Bear he played at the Community College of Rhode Island. At CCRI he played in the DII Junior College World Series. Pantazis has also played for the Rhode Island Reds of the NECBL wood bat league.

Following his graduation from the Black Bears, Pantazis became a member of the Black Bears’ coaching staff, and then coached at Rhode Island College from 2000-2007. In 2005, RIC won the Little East Conference Championship.

Pantazis has worked at several indoor baseball facilities in Rhode Island, Massachusetts and New Hampshire.

Marc is available for baseball hitting, fielding, pitching, and catching lessons.


LAUREN EBSTEIN

Pitching Instructor

EbsteinLaurenEbstein enters her sixth year of coaching with experience at Colgate, Valparaiso and Tufts University.  Most recently she was named the assistant coach at Tufts University.

Before coming back to Tufts she completed a record breaking season at Valparaiso University where the Crusaders won their second consecutive Horizon League Tournament and participated in first round of the NCAA tournament, winning the first post season game in program history.  Pitchers were selected as Horizon League Pitcher of the Week four times in addition to a pitcher being named the Pitcher of the Championship during the conference tournament.  Under Ebstein’s guidance, a freshman pitcher broke the school’s single season strike out record and finished the season leading the Horizon League in ERA and strikeouts and second in wins.  The pitcher was also named by ESPN.com as the “Player to Watch” in the Ann Arbor, Michigan NCAA Regional.

Prior to her time at Valparaiso, Ebstein spent two seasons at Colgate University where she coached the Patriot League Pitcher of the Year and three of her pitchers were selected as all-league during her two season there.

Ebstein started her coaching career at Tufts where the team finished fourth in the Division III College World Series in 2009.  She was part of the NFCA Division III New England Regional Coaching Staff of the year in 2009.

Ebstein was a four-year letterwinner for the Tufts softball team, winning the NESCAC championship in 2007 and participating in three NCAA Regionals. Ebstein graduated from Tufts in 2007 and earned her masters degree from Boston University in 2009.

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