Coaching Staff

John Zizzo
Director of Athletics

John began his coaching career at the age of seventeen in the local sandlot leagues of his hometown, Youngstown, Ohio. His 16 year run finished with a NABF National Championship with his Miller Brewing summer collegiate team in 1986.

John started his college coaching career as an assistant at Youngstown State University in 1980 under Coach Dom Roselli. He went on to assistant coaching positions at Miami Dade North C.C., Palm Beach C.C., and Indiana University. He was hired in the fall of 1987 as the third head coach in YSU history where he served from 1988 to 1991. His YSU Penguins set the school record for wins in the 1991 season.

In 1992 Coach Zizzo left YSU for the expansion Colorado Rockies as a scout and minor league hitting coach. He was also a minor league field manager in professional baseball for the Sioux Falls, SD Canaries and Canton, OH Crocodiles. He most recently managed the North Shore Navigators in the Futures Collegiate Baseball League for three seasons 2015 to 2017.

John has three children Jonathan, Stefanie and Jack.

John Zizzo

Phillipp Panno
Head Coach

Phil was born and raised in Youngstown, Ohio. He is a 1983 graduate from Youngstown State University with a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration. He worked as a nursing home administrator for thirty-two years. Phil played baseball for two years under Coach Dom Roselli while at YSU, and two years in Miami, Florida, at Miami Dade Community College, and St. Thomas University. Phil was a player/manager in the Youngstown AA Baseball League, winning nine Championships in twelve years. Phil was inducted into the Youngstown Curbstone Coaches Hall of Fame in 2010.

Phil lives in Boardman, Ohio, with his wife of thirty-two years, Mia Panno, and his children, Phillipp Jerome, twenty-one, a student at EGCC, and Angelina Rose, eighteen, a senior in high school.

Phil Panno

Dave Smercansky
Pitching Coach

Dave Smercansky is a product of Poland High School where he played both football and baseball.  A three year starter in baseball, Dave held or tied 16 pitching records upon graduation.  Dave was inducted into the Poland Hall of Fame in 2013.  He then went on to Youngstown State University where he was a four year starter, collected 20 wins, and held two pitching records.  He posted a stingy .026 ERA in one season and also the lowest career ERA of 1.37.  Dave was inducted into the Youngstown State Hall of Fame in 1995.  Dave graduated from Youngstown State with a B.S. in Comprehensive Social Studies and a Masters Degree in Secondary Administration. Dave went on to teach and coach at Boardman Hiogh School.  As the Head baseball coach for 12 years Dave’s teams posted a 213-92 record.  He was the Mahoning Valley Coach of the Year 8 times.  Dave them became the Director of Athletics.  Upon retirement, Dave became an assistant coach at Westminster College for 3 years.  Dave is being inducted into the Boardman Hall of Fame this fall for baseball.

Dave is married to Mary Lynn and has three dogs, Braxton, Brady and Sadie.

Dave Smercansky

Dan Flora

Information Coming Soon