July 11, 2014

Cortland's Taylor Tabbed to Lead Le Moyne

From Lacrosse Magazine Staff Reports | LaxMagazine.com | Twitter

Kathy Taylor will now take over as the Dolphins' head coach. (Darl Zehr Photgraphy via Le Moyne Athletics)

The regular season is still six months away, but there's already one guarantee about next May: The sidelines at the NCAA Division III women’s lacrosse semifinals will look pretty different.

On Thursday, Division II Le Moyne announced that Kathy Taylor, who guided Cortland to the Division III semifinals in each of the past four seasons, would take over as the Dolphins’ head coach. Taylor replaces Beth Hewitt, who joined Vanderbilt’s coaching staff last month. Hewitt led the Dolphins for five years as it transitioned from Division I program to Division II power. Le Moyne missed the NCAA tournament for the first time in its four-year Division II tenure last season.

"I am extremely grateful and energized for the opportunity that Matt Bassett and Le Moyne College has given me to be the next head women's lacrosse coach," said Taylor in a press release. "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. I look forward to working with the outstanding student-athletes and cannot wait to get started chasing a national championship."

Taylor coached Cortland to the NCAA tournament six times, while amassing a 115-7 record. In 2010, Taylor, who played at Cornell and then ran the high school program at Syracuse-area Fayetteville-Manlius, was inducted into the Upstate New York Chapter of the US Lacrosse Hall of Fame.

Taylor is the second high-profile Division III coach to change addresses this offseason. Trinity’s Kate Livesay resigned at the end of May to join the staff at her alma mater Middlebury, where she is the presumed successor to Missy Foote, who will step down at the end of next season.

Trinity, which has reached the championship game in each of the past three seasons, eliminated Cortland in the last two NCAA semifinals. This year's 8-7 defeat was Cortland’s only loss of the season. The Red Dragons have lost four straight semifinal games by a combined seven goals. Cortland, which topped LM's Top 20 for most of the season, ranked second, behind only two-time defending champion Salisbury, in LM's Early 2015 poll.

Fifteen Cortland players claimed All-American honors under Taylor, including recent stars-turned-coaches Lindsay Abbott, who is currently an assistant at Cortland, and Maria Di Fato, currently an assistant at Oswego.

Le Moyne, which was expected to lose just three seniors, went 12-5 last season, amassing a 9-3 record in the mighty Northeast-10, and was likely the first North Region team out of the NCAA tournament. The NE-10 sent three teams to the NCAA tournament last year, including NCAA champion Adelphi.

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