Sonia LaMonica, who was announced on Nov. 17, 2009 to become the sixth women's lacrosse head coach in school history, has resigned, according to a source. She reportedly informed the players of her decision earlier today.
In her only season in Emmitsburg, LaMonica, who had a baby this summer, led the team to an 8-10 record including 6-3 in Northeast Conference regular season play. The fourth-seeded Mountaineers fell in the first round of the conference tournament to top-seeded Sacred Heart, who won all 11 of its NEC matches en route to the NCAA Tournament.
Sophomore Jordan Corteza says that although the transition will be difficult, the team can draw on its experience from last season to get through this year.
"Having dealt with it last year gives us a clue as to how things are going to go but we are still in the dark with the future," Corteza said. "The upperclassmen have done a lot of 'coaching' us and helped out with not only lacrosse but our fears that we had coming back to school. We are a very close team and like last year we will just have to depend on each other to help out with lacrosse, school, social and anything else we may need."
In her first season at the Mount, Corteza was selected to the conference's All-Rookie team. The attacker was second on the team with 20 goals and 23 assists, earning her NEC Rookie of the Week honors on two separate occasions under the first-year head coach.
LaMonica will presumably pursue the vacant position at Towson University, where Missy Doherty left after seven years to become the head coach at Penn State University. LaMonica served as a head coach under Doherty for two years at Towson, and still resides in nearby Parkton.
This marks the second time in as many seasons that the athletic department will be seeking a new coach for one of its most successful programs in the NCAA Division I era. Denise Wescott left the Mount to be named the head coach at top rival Monmouth University on Sept. 12, 2009 after four years at the Mount. Women's lacrosse will join the men's golf program (2007 - 2010) in having a different coach in three consecutive seasons.
"I know that I can depend on every single one of my teammates to help me with anything I need and that is nice to know that I have them there. So no matter what happens we will all be together and able to help each other out," Corteza stated.
This also marks the third head coaching search the athletic department will undergo since late spring when Milan Brown resigned as men's basketball head coach, followed by the firing of former softball coach Larry Alvis.