Jul 10, 2014 Phil Blackwell Uncategorized
Just a decade removed from the back-to-back state championships she won at Fayetteville-Manlius, Kathy Taylor is back in the neighborhood – but now as the head coach of the Le Moyne College women’s lacrosse team.
Le Moyne announced Taylor’s hiring on Thursday in the wake of her leading the Red Dragons to four consecutive NCAA Division III semifinals and an undefeated regular season in 2014.
Taylor replaces Beth Hewitt, who left the Dolphins after five seasons (where her teams went 71-20 and twice reached the NCAA Division II semifinals) to take an assistant coaching job at Vanderbilt University.
“I am excited about the future of the program and thrilled to come in and continue the great work Beth Hewitt has done in establishing Le Moyne as a national contender,” said Taylor. “I look forward to working with the outstanding student-athletes and cannot wait to get started chasing a national championship.”
Of course, Taylor first made her coaching name at F-M, where she established the girls lacrosse program in 1988 and won 245 games in 19 seasons, culminating in those state titles she won with the Hornets in 2004 and 2005.
Four years later, Taylor moved up to the college ranks and took the head coaching job at Cortland State, her college alma mater. At the time, the Red Dragons had a streak of 10 consecutive SUNYAC conference titles, but had only reached the NCAA semifinals once in program history.
Cortland State went 14-7 in Taylor’s first season (2009), and then improved to 17-3 a year later, just as Taylor earned induction into the Upstate New York chapter of the U.S. Lacrosse Hall of Fame.
Then, in 2011, Taylor was SUNYAC Coach of the year, helping the Red Dragons win 21 games, a program record (19 of them in a row), and get to the NCAA Division III semifinals.
Much the same thing happened in 2012, with 20 wins and a national semifinal defeat to eventual champion Trinity. Then, in 2013, Cortland State carried an 18-game win streak to the NCAA semifinals where, again, Trinity stopped them, 8-6, en route to the national championship.
All of it culminated in a 2014 season where Cortland State, for the first time, went through the regular season undefeated, won the SUNYAC championship for the 16th year in a row and, again, reached the NCAA semifinals where, again, Trinity stopped them just short of the title game.
During Taylor’s six-year tenure, Cortland State went 115-17, for a winning percentage of .871. The Red Dragons were 48-1 against SUNYAC foes in the regular season and, counting the post-season, won 53 in a row against league competition. She coached 15 players to first-team All-American status and 34 of them were first-team All-SUNYAC selections.
Taylor is heavily involved with the Intercollegiate Women’s Lacrosse Coaches Association, serving as a member in IWLCA’s National Board of Directors, coaching in All-Star games and as a committee member for the U.S. Women’s Team Tryout Select Committee.