Stocks, Howley Tabbed to Start UIndy M&W Programs
from press release
INDIANAPOLIS – The University of Indianapolis made official its addition of men's and women's lacrosse, announcing the hiring of two head coaches Wednesday. Newlyweds Greg Stocks and Jillian Howley, both former head coaches at Division II Lake Erie, will each step in as their respective gender's very first UIndy lacrosse head coach.
Married just a few weeks ago, the duo comes to Central Indiana from Lake Erie College in Painesville, Ohio – a suburb of Cleveland. Both will have a year to recruit and build a staff before starting NCAA Division II competition in the spring of 2016.
"We are extremely excited to welcome Jillian and Greg as our head lacrosse coaches not only because of their successful coaching backgrounds, but also because they are a great fit for the University of Indianapolis," said Dr. Sue Willey, UIndy Vice President for Intercollegiate Athletics. "Their passion for their sport, team-player attitude and desire to establish a positive experience for our student-athletes makes them a perfect fit for UIndy."
A native of Long Island, N.Y., Jillian Howley became a first-time head coach in August of 2011, guiding Lake Erie to 30-23 record in three seasons. Howley led LEC to back-to-back runner-up finishes in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletics Conference regular-season standings, as well as consecutive GLIAC Tournament semifinal appearances.
"I feel like the stars are aligning for us, actually," beamed Howley. "We both landed a job at UIndy after just getting married a few weeks ago. It's exciting.
"UIndy has such a strong athletics department from top to bottom, and I'm thrilled to be a part of it. Also, starting an NCAA lacrosse program has also been a goal of mine since helping build a new program as a student-athlete."
After being a four-year starter on both the women's lacrosse and field hockey teams at Division I Robert Morris University (Pa.), Howley had stints as an assistant on D-II staffs at Bloomburg University (Pa.) and Mercyhurst University (Pa.), as well as with a number of club teams.
Like his wife, Greg Stocks comes to the Circle City from Lake Erie College, having built the Storm lacrosse program from scratch starting in late 2007. The Nanaimo, British Columbia native molded LEC into a nationally-ranked program, appearing as high as No. 9 in the United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association poll.
In 2013, he was named the Eastern College Athletic Conference Coach of the Year and Lacrosse Magazine's Division II National Coach of the Year, guiding his team to the quarterfinals of the NCAA Division II Tournament. This past spring, Stocks led Lake Erie to the ECAC Tournament championship.
"I've started a program from the ground up before, but I'm really looking forward to the challenge of doing it again at UIndy," said Stocks. "I was very impressed with their leadership and facilities. I believe men's lacrosse will soon contribute to the school's winning culture. I can't wait to get started."
Prior to earning his first head coaching job at LEC, Stocks spent time as an assistant at Division II Wingate University (N.C.) and D-III Lycoming College (Pa.). He played collegiately at Mercyhurst University (Pa.) before earning a bachelor's degree in 2006.
"We would like to thank Dr. Willey and President (Rob) Manuel along with the entire search committee for this incredible opportunity," said the pair in a joint statement. "We are honored and excited to be selected to start the men's and women's lacrosse programs at the University of Indianapolis and are thrilled to be a part of the Greyhound family."
The addition of men's and women's lacrosse ups UIndy's total number of varsity sports to 23. Both teams will start NCAA competition in the spring of 2016, using Key Stadium as their competition venue.
With limited conference options in Division II lacrosse, both teams will begin as independents, joining the Greyhound wrestling squad as UIndy's only teams not affiliated with the Great Lakes Valley Conference.
However, future plans are in the works for a conference destination for both programs.
"The most logical choice for our women's program would be the GLIAC," said Dr. Willey. "As a former associate member in both football and swimming and diving, we could easily fill that same role with women's lacrosse. We're very familiar with the schools in that league, as is Coach Howley.
"On the men's side, the ECAC is the most attractive option right now," continued Willey, "especially with the success Coach Stocks has already had there at Lake Erie."
A meet-and-greet with both of the new coaches will be scheduled later this summer. Stay tuned to UIndyAthletics.com for forthcoming details.
comments powered by Disqus