Meet our Coaches and Counselors

You'll find several similarities between all of our coaches.

  • Soccer has always been a passion of theirs, each having played at the national level.

  • As licensed coaches with the National Soccer Coaches Association of America, they share this passion with young players in a proficient and encouraging way.

  • Each of our coaches are also parents of young athletes, and appreciate the value of a balanced, all-encompassing summer camp.

Curtis McAlister - Coach

Curtis has been the Bear Valley Soccer Camp Director of Coaching since 2011. As a crucial part of the Santa Clara Woman's Soccer coaching staff since 2003, Curtis serves as assistant coach, recruiting coordinator and works with the goalkeepers. At Santa Clara, Curtis has helped the Broncos win 203 matches in 15 seasons, qualify for 13 NCAA tournaments, win 23 NCAA tournament matches and advance all the way to the College Cup (NCAA's soccer version of the Final Four) in 2004.


Between 1991 and 1994, Curtis spent his off-season coaching goalkeepers on both the men's and women's teams at San Diego State University, where he discovered his love for coaching. He also served as head coach for a variety of youth club teams during his time as a professional player. In 1998, Curtis broke onto the collegiate coaching scene, becoming an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator at Washington State University, where he helped he Cougars achieve the program's best finish ever in the Pacific-10 Conference (third) and their highest-ever national ranking (19th) during the four years he was there. In addition to coaching at the college level, Curtis has served as the head goalkeeper coach for the Olympic Development Program West Region and as an assistant with U.S. Soccer National Youth Teams.

Curtis now resides in Capitola, CA with his wife and two daughters (both soccer players!). Though his playing days are over, he enjoys camping, dirt bike riding, and mountain biking.

Jessica Perkin - Coach

A native of New Jersey, Jessica played varsity soccer and basketball all four years at Union Catholic Regional High School. Her soccer accolades include being named Parade Magazine National High School Defender of the Year and All-American, Gatorade High School Defender of the Year, and two time NSCAA High School All-American. Not only was Jess a critical member of U.S. Youth National Teams since age 15, she was also a starting defender for the U.S. U-19 National Team when they won the first ever U-19 Women's World Cup in 2002.

Jessica came out West in 2001 to attend Santa Clara University where she earned a bachelor's degree in English with a minor in Studio Art, and was a starter on SCU Women's Soccer team from 2001 to 2004. As a freshman, Jessica contributed the assist that scored the winning goal to help SCU win their first ever NCAA Division I National Championship. Her college accolades include being a member of both the Soccer America All-Freshman All-American Team and the NCAA All-Tournament Team in 2001 and 2002, and the prestigious honor of the 2002 NCAA Tournament’s Defensive Most Valuable Player. 

Jessica also has extensive coaching experience, holding a USSF "B"  coaching license.  She has coached club soccer on both coasts (PDA & SC Breakers), as well as NJ ODP and Region 1 ODP.  She coached at three different Division 1 schools, Rutgers University, University of Virginia, and University of Nevada Reno, before making a move to Santa Cruz County to start a family. Jessica and her husband Kenny now have two children, Brayden and Tatum, and are both teachers in their local community.  Currently, Jessica runs the Girls Varsity Soccer Program at Aptos High School and just finished her 9th season as their head coach. Recently, Jessica was invited to coach with the U-14 U.S. National Team.

Bonnie Niesen - Coach & Camp Director

An alum of the Santa Clara Women's Soccer Team, Bonnie has coached at the Bear Valley Soccer Camp for several years now. She grew up in San Carlos, CA, where she played four years of varsity soccer at Notre Dame Belmont High School. By age 16, she had also worked her way up to ODP’s Region IV team of 18 players. During her years playing for Santa Clara, their team went to two College Cup Tournaments, and two quarterfinal rounds. Bonnie also received the Coaches Award during her senior year in 2006.


Bonnie graduated from Santa Clara with a bachelor’s degree in psychology, a minor in mathematics, and a Single Subject Teaching Credential. After teaching and coaching at Santa Clara High School for several years following graduation, she and her husband, fellow SCU alum and men’s basketball player Travis Niesen, moved to Scotts Valley and started their family. They now have two children and Bonnie enjoys coaching them in soccer and in life.

Meet Ryan, Jenna, Asher and Alyx. As locals to the Bear Valley area, they all grew up as regular Bear Valley Soccer Campers and continue to have a passion for soccer. Not only are they full of positive energy and ensure that camp is a fun experience for every camper, but they are also responsible and competent young adults. We are very lucky to have them!

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Bonnie Niesen, Director

Tel: 408-893-1113


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