Herkimer County Community College has appointed Damon J. Neish, of Utica, NY, to the role of head women’s soccer coach.
After being a four-year starter at the University of Abertay Dundee in Scotland, where he earned his bachelor’s degree in sports coaching and development, Neish was appointed to a coaching role at New Fairfield in Connecticut for a year in 2011. He moved back to Scotland to begin working on his professional coaching licenses and began working for Dundee Football Club in their pro-youth academy.
In his four years with Dundee FC, Neish would head up the U19's, U14's and U12 ages in his time there, working with a multitude of different coaches and producing players to play for Dundee's first team in the Scottish Premier League, before eventually being named the team’s community development manager.
In 2014, Neish was named the head coach of Forfar Farmington Woman's Football Club. Farmington played in the Scottish Woman's Premier League, where Neish managed to navigate through two seasons keeping the small Angus club at the top level in the country. Neish also worked with a number of youth international players, helping the players adapt to international competitions.
During his time with Farmington, Neish also spent time with the Scottish Football Association, working with the regional squads, developing under the youth national coaches and the senior national coaching team.
Before moving back to the United States in 2016, Neish had a brief period as head of the performance academy with Jeanfield/St. Johnstone Women's Football Club. In his role Neish helped develop youth players to be ready to play in the Scottish Women's Premier League, working alongside Jason McCrindle, the manager of St. Johnstone WFC, to help bridge the gap between youth soccer and elite women's soccer.
Neish has been director of coaching at Rising Stars Soccer Academy since 2016, helping grow and develop soccer in Central New York and providing opportunities for players to play locally and beyond. In the five years he has been in the role, many of the players have gone on to play at the collegiate level. He has recently started working in Schuyler at Schuyler Sports and for Community Athletic Solutions in a bid to continue developing soccer in our community.
In his new role at Herkimer College, Neish will be in charge of recruiting, game and practice planning, and player development for the women’s soccer team. The Generals have established themselves as a national contender in women’s soccer over the years, earning eight Region III championship titles and 19 Mountain Valley Conference Championship wins, along with a National Runner-up finish in 2017.