July 22, 2010

Adelphi's Spallina Applies for Towson Opening

by Corey McLaughlin | Lacrosse Magazine Online Staff

Joe Spallina, head coach of two-time defending Division II champion Adelphi, has applied for the job at Towson vacated by Missy Doherty. He was also a finalist for a since-filled vacancy at Ohio State.

© John Strohsacker/LaxPhotos.com

Joe Spallina, head coach of two-time defending NCAA Division II women’s lacrosse champion Adelphi, said Thursday he is “100 percent interested” in the open head coaching position at Towson.
 
Spallina, who was a finalist for the Ohio State job that went to former UMass coach Alexis Venechanos, applied for the job at Towson on Wednesday and said he’s eager to hear back for an interview.
 
“I would be interested in a few situations and this is definitely one of them,” Spallina said by phone from his Long Island, N.Y., home. “It’s a program that is right there, in terms of being an NCAA contender… I’m confident I could do the job there. I really want the opportunity.”
 
In three seasons at Adelphi, Spallina compiled a 53-2 record and led the Panthers to consecutive national titles in 2009 and 2010, becoming the first D-II women’s lacrosse program to win back-to-back championships. Adelphi went 16-1 in 2008, 18-0 in ’09 and finished 19-1 last season, beating West Chester, 17-7, in the title game. And the Panthers are set up well to try for a third straight title, returning their top seven scorers.
 
“We’re loaded,” Spallina said. “That’s why for me to leave it would have to be a program that’s right there. Towson is on the cusp. Missy [Doherty, the previous coach] did a great job. I think I could put the finishing touches on that with my recruiting connections to Long Island and being right there in Maryland in one of the hotbeds.”
 
Before coaching Adelphi, Spallina was the girls' lacrosse coach at Rocky Point (N.Y.) High School for 10 years, winning three county titles in his final three seasons, and is still a physical education teacher there. (His brother, Dan, is now the girls' coach at Rocky Point.) Spallina is also in his first season as an assistant coach with MLL’s Long Island Lizards.
 
He and his wife, Marybeth, have four young kids, but Spallina said he would be willing to relocate to Maryland, where he has extended family.
 
Of his players at Adelphi, he said: “They know I’m out there. Everything we can accomplish at the D-II level is something we’ve already done. We’ve won wherever I’ve had the opportunity to coach. The next logical step is Division I.”
 
The Towson job became open in early July when Doherty, the coach the last seven seasons, was named the new Penn State coach. The Tigers won three CAA tournaments during Doherty’s tenure and made the NCAA tournament four times.


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