Like fine wine, Dave Leckie’s soccer skills get better the longer he plays. And few men in New Jersey soccer history have played as long at a high level as Dave Leckie.
Although he just celebrated his 58th birthday, Dave continues to play competitive soccer in the Men’s Master League for Sante Fe Soccer Club, earning Most Valuable Defensive Player honors in 2002 after leading his team to seven championships in 10 seasons.
Dave, who grew up in the Trenton area, lives in Basking Ridge with wife Annie and daughters Kate (26) and Elly (24). He is a special education teacher at New Beginnings School in Fairfield.
His soccer career, which dates back over 50 years to youth leagues in the Trenton area, has included successful stints in the high school, college, pro, amateur and now master’s leagues.
Inducted into the Mercer County Soccer Hall of Fame in 1997 and the following fall into the Hall of Fame at his alma mater Mercer County Community College, Dave’s name has been synonymous with soccer success at every level he played.
After excelling for three all-star seasons on the varsity team at Ewing High School he was names to a U.S. Select 15-year old team that toured Ireland and after graduating from high school spent a year with the pro St. Mirren Club in Scotland.
Dave’s collegiate career began at Mercer County College CC where he led the team to the 1968 national championship as a freshman and was named All-American twice. Then it was on to Alderson Broaddus College in West Virginia for two more All-American seasons. He played in the College Senior Bowl after producing 99 goals 101 assists at A&B where he was named West Virginia Player of the Year.
Dave began his collegiate career with the Cleveland Cobras of the American Soccer League where he played five season, and was twice name ALL-ASL, and played in 35 International matches. He went on to play one season with Atletica SC in Mexican League and five in the Canadian/American League.
Dave, a second generation Mercer Hall of Fame inductee, played for the Trentn Extension SC that reached the U.S. Amateur Cup final in 1976, then led German American Kickers to three N.J. State Cup titles in five years with that team.
His list of former teams includes Trenton Italians of the New York Super League, United German Hungarians of the East Penn League, 3-time N.J. Over 30 Cup winners Smitty’s Kicks.
As successful as a coach he was as a player, Dave would serve as assistant coach at Trenton State and Cleveland State, coached Mercer County CC to the National Junior College finals in 1986 where he earned National Coach of the Year honors.