IWLCA Recognizes 14 as Coaches of the Year
from Press Release
The IWLCA has recognized 14 collegiate mentors as 2013 Coaches of the Year in their respective regions, with three being honored as National Coach of the Year. Divisional champions Jim Nestor from Salisbury, Meghan McNamara from C. W. Post, and Jenny Levy from North Carolina each led their teams to the NCAA title and were selected by their peers to receive the national recognition.
In Division III, Nestor led his team to the NCAA Championship for the second time in six attempts. It was the ninth time Nestor was been voted the top coach in the conference (Capital), after leading the Sea Gulls to an undefeated regular season, marking the 11th-consecutive season that Salisbury has gone undefeated in regular-season conference play. Earlier this season, the team broke the Division III record for consecutive-conference wins, and that mark currently sits at 72-straight conference wins.
Seven of Nestor's colleagues were honored as Regional Coaches of the Year. Kate Livesay (Trinity), Missy Foote (Middlebury), Carol Cantele (Gettysburg), Meredith Buzzi (Kenyon), Kathy Taylor (Cortland), Laura Moan (Susquehanna) and Suzette Soboti (Redlands) each earned a nod by the IWLCA.
Livesay led her team to the NCAA Championship game for the second consecutive year. The Bantams ended atop the NESCAC standings and were 21-1 on the season, finishing a perfect 10-0 in NESCAC play. Livesay mentored midfielder Megan Leonhard to the NESCAC Player of the Year award along with two other first-team selections (attacker Kaitlin Hildebrand and defender Hillary McNamara). Leonhard was also named an All-American.
Moan, a January 2010 inductee into The Greater Baltimore Chapter of the US Lacrosse Hall of Fame, was named the head coach of Susquehanna University's women's lacrosse team in November 2008 and completed her fifth full season at SU in 2013. This past season Moan and the Crusaders won a program-record 17 games, captured its first-ever Landmark Conference title and advanced to the NCAA Tournament. Following the regular season, Moan and assistant coach Katie Zichelli were named the Coaching Staff of the Year, five players received All-Conference recognition and senior goalie Emily Stankaitis earned All-America status.
SUNY Cortland fifth-year head coach Kathy Taylor led the Red Dragons to their 15th consecutive SUNYAC Tournament title, 15th straight NCAA Div. III playoff appearance and third consecutive NCAA Div. III Final Four this past season. The Red Dragons tied for third nationally, finishing with a 21-2 record, the third straight year Taylor has guided Cortland to a 20-win season. During 2013, the Red Dragons put together an 18-game winning streak, just one short of the school record. For her career, Taylor has posted a 93-16 overall record and her .853 winning percentage is tops in team history. This past season, Taylor coached three first team IWLCA All-Americans, the SUNYAC Player of the Year and the SUNYAC Rookie of the Year, as well as the Synapse Sports Div. III Rookie of the Year.
The Kenyon Ladies, led by North Coast Athletic Conference Coach of the Year Meredith Buzzi, made history in 2013 by claiming stake to the program's first-ever NCAC Tournament championship, along with becoming the programs most winning coach in its 40 year history. Behind a record-setting season by senior midfielder Leah Sack, the Ladies advanced to the NCAA Division III Tournament for the second time in four years. Sack, the NCAC Player of the Year and All-Region selection, obliterated Kenyon single-season records for assists (68), assists per game (4.86) while climbing to the top of the charts in career points (259) and assists (169). Her marks for single-season and career assist totals surpassed conference records, as well. As a team, the Ladies set new single-season, offensive standards in points per game (25.07), goals per game (16.43), assists (121), and assists per game (8.64) en route to a remarkable year. Buzzi and the Ladies finished the season with a 13-3 overall (doubling last year's win total) record and a 7-1 ledger in conference play behind three 40-plus goal scorers, including NCAC Newcomer of the Year Jane Symmes, and a total of six all-conference honorees.
Carol Cantele guided the Bullets to their league-record eighth Centennial Conference championship this spring. The team went unbeaten in conference play (9-0) for the second consecutive season and advanced to the NCAA Division III Tournament for the 12th consecutive campaign. Gettysburg spent the entire regular season ranked in the top five in the national poll and closed the year with a record of 19-2, including an undefeated record in regional competition. In her 21st season at the helm, Cantele became the first Bullet women's lacrosse coach to reach 300 career wins and capped the year with a career record of 305-92 at her alma mater.
Foote led her team to the NCAA national semifinals for the 16th time in 2013. The Panthers finished the season with three one-goal losses, two at top-ranked Trinity and one to eventual NCAA Champion Salisbury. Despite losing their starting goaltender and several key starters, the Panthers had another impressive season, leading the NESCAC in goals/game, shots and draw controls. Foote has now coached 499 career games, owning a record of 394-104-1.
Suzette Soboti led the University of Redlands women's lacrosse team to back-to-back SCIAC Championships en route to a 15-5 overall record and a nearly perfect conference mark of 11-1. The Bulldogs ran the table at the SCIAC Tournament after clinching the title with a semifinal win over Pomona-Pitzer Colleges. The Maroon and Gray advanced to the NCAA Division III Championships for the third time in school history and served as host to the opening round in consecutive seasons. Redlands gained eight All-SCIAC honorees, including midfielder Jacky Craycraft as the SCIAC Player of the Year and midfielder Stephanie Garrett as the SCIAC Newcomer of the Year. Six Bulldogs landed on the IWLCA All-West Region teams and Craycraft garnered a pair of All-America distinctions. Bulldog goalkeeper Ana Martinez reset the school record for career saves and midfielder Crystal Painter now sits atop the program's list for career assists.
In Division II, LIU Post's Meghan McNamara led the defending National Champions to another NCAA finals appearance. In 2013 they defended their title topping Limestone 10-7. Going into the season the Pioneers did not focus on last years success, McNamara knew it they would have to continue to improve and work hard everyday. LIU Post finished the season undefeated with a record of 20-0. This years championship marks the fourth National Championship for the program. The team posted 3 first team All-Americans, 2 second team All-Americans and 10 Pioneers were name to the All-Conference team. Among the standouts, Jackie Sileo earned her second consecutive player of the year honors and Ashley Olen was named most outstanding player of the NCAA Div. II tournament.
Limestone head coach Scott Tucker helped lead the Saints to the most impressive season in program history with a 20-2 overall record, No. 2 national ranking and the second NCAA Division II National Championship Game appearance in program history, both within the past three years. The 20 wins is the most in the more than 40 years of Limestone lacrosse history (men's and women's) and goes along with the second highest winning percentage in the country (.909). The latter is one of four top-five national rankings that include No. 2 in points (512) and scoring defense (6.18). The Saints were also third in scoring margin (9.36). This season Tucker has coached four players that have earned All-American status, including first-team honoree Sarah Oor, as well as five All-South Region selections. He was also named Conference Carolinas Coach of the Year for the seventh time and third consecutive year before winning his 200th career game in an 11-10 double overtime victory over No. 3 Rollins in the national semifinals.
In Division I, North Carolina's Jenny Levy led the Tar Heels to its first NCAA championship this spring, capturing the national title with a triple-overtime, 13-12 sudden-victory win over top-seeded and previously undefeated Maryland in the final game. To advance to the title game, UNC defeated Northwestern, 11-4, in the semifinals, limiting the Wildcats to a season-low in goals and beating the defending NCAA champions for a second time this season. Levy led Carolina to the program's seventh appearance in the NCAA Tournament semifinals and its second national title game berth in 18 seasons, all under Levy's tutelage. Levy is the fourth coach to win an NCAA title as both a player and a head coach, and is the sixth-winningest coach in NCAA women's lacrosse history (in number of wins). The Tar Heels went 18-3 in 2013, setting a new UNC record for most victories in a season.
Three other Division I coaches were honored as Regional Coaches of the Year, including Syracuse's Gary Gait, Penn State's Missy Doherty, and Denver's Liza Kelly. Gait wins the honor for the second consecutive year; all three led their squads to the NCAA tournament in 2013.
Doherty led the Nittany Lions (14-7 overall, 4-1 ALC) to their second straight NCAA quarterfinal appearance and the program's most wins since the 1999 season. Under her guidance, Penn State secured back-to-back NCAA tournament berths for the first time since a three-year span from 1995-97 and finished undefeated at home for the first time since 1991. Relying heavily on underclassmen, Doherty steered the Nittany Lions to a share of their first American Lacrosse Conference regular-season championship and led Penn State, which defeated three top-10 teams, to its highest ranked victory since 2007 with a win against then-No. 2 Florida. In 2013, Doherty coached three IWLCA All-Americans, including Tewaaraton Award nominee Maggie McCormick.
Gait led Syracuse back to the national semifinals for the second consecutive year and fourth time in the past six years. The Orange went undefeated in Big East play for the second straight year to claim its sixth regular-season title. Syracuse also won the Big East Tournament crown, defeating No. 6 Georgetown on its home field. The Orange has won 13 consecutive games heading into the national semifinals. The Orange has one of the highest scoring offenses in the country, ranking second in the nation in the latest NCAA statistics. In addition, SU's defense has held its opponents to less than 10 goals in 13 consecutive games. Gait mentored three IWLCA first-team All-Americans, including BIG EAST Attack Player of the Year and Tewaaraton Award finalist Alyssa Murray and BIG EAST Defensive Player of the Year Becca Block. Overall, six members of the Orange earned All-Northeast Region honors.
Kelly led Denver to its first ever NCAA Tournament and Tournament victory in 2013, going 18-3 overall and a perfect 8-0 in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation, the fourth time in Kelly's seven seasons at DU that the Pioneers have swept the conference season. For her efforts, Kelly won 2013 MPSF Coach of the Year honors. The Pioneers ranked among the NCAA's Top 10 in caused turnovers (2nd), win percentage (4th), points (5th) and scoring offense (9th). Three Pioneers led the nation in individual statistics: Jill Remenapp in assists (74) and assists per game (3.52), Kate Henrich in caused turnovers (3.33) for the second-straight season, and Hannah Hook in saves (190). Kara Secora joined Remenapp, Henrich and Hook on the IWLCA All-West/Midwest Region teams, and Henrich was named an IWLCA Second Team All-American.
2013 IWLCA National Coaches of the Year
Division I: Jenny Levy, North Carolina
Division II: Meghan McNamara, LIU Post
Division III: Jim Nestor, Salisbury
2013 IWLCA Regional Coaches of the Year
Mid-Atlantic Region: Missy Doherty, Penn State
Northeast Region: Gary Gait, Syracuse
South Region: Jenny Levy, North Carolina
West/Midwest Region: Liza Kelly, Denver
North Region: Meghan McNamara, LIU Post
South Region: Scott Tucker, Limestone
Berkshire Region: Kate Livesay, Trinity
Boardwalk Region: Laura Moan, Susquehanna
Chesapeake Region: Jim Nestor, Salisbury
Empire Region: Kathy Taylor, Cortland
Great Lakes Region: Meredith Buzzi, Kenyon
Metro Region: Carol Cantele, Gettysburg
Pilgrim Region: Missy Foote, Middlebury
West Region: Suzette Soboti, Redlands