Justine Sowry is entering her third season at the helm of the University of Louisville field hockey team.
The 2012 Cardinals posted a 12-8 overall record and made their eighth straight appearance in the BIG EAST semifinals. Three players earned all-conference honors while Amber Thomas was selected to the NFHCA All-Region team.
In her first season at the helm, Sowry's 2011 team featured six underclassmen in the starting lineup and posted 10 wins while earning the Cards' seventh straight appearance in the BIG EAST semifinals. Five players earned league honors and Hayley Turner was named BIG EAST Co-Offensive Player of the Year. Additionally, Turner and Collins were NFHCA All-West Region selections. Turner went on to become the seventh player in program history to earn All-American status.
Sowry joined the Cardinals on December 16, 2010 when Vice President for Athletics Tom Jurich announced that she would become the program's eighth head field hockey coach.
"We are thrilled to have the opportunity to bring a world class head field hockey coach to our nationally-ranked program," said Jurich upon her hiring. "Justine is an elite competitor and a great player's coach. She and her outstanding staff will lead us to the next level."
Sowry returned to where her collegiate coaching career started when she was an assistant under head coach Pam Bustin from 1998 through 2002.
"With world-class facilities and a commitment to athletic excellence, the tools are available to make Louisville one of the nation's elite," said Sowry. "I look forward to working with the student athletes and together building a championship program."
Sowry joined Louisville after four seasons as the head coach at UMass. During her time there, she compiled a 58-31 overall record, including a mark of 22-4 in Atlantic 10 play. Under her guidance, the Minutewomen earned powerhouse status in the Atlantic 10 and on the national level, claiming three A-10 championships and NCAA appearances (2007, 2008 and 2010).
In 2010, her final season at UMass, Sowry led the Minutewomen to a 15-8 overall record and a perfect 7-0 mark in Atlantic 10 play. She also earned her third A-10 Coach of the Year and her second NFHCA Division I Northeast Region Coach of the Year honors.
During her four-year tenure there, she coached 19 A-10 All-Conference selections, 17 All-Region selections, and five All-Americans. Sowry led the team to three conference titles and three NCAA tournament appearances. The Minutewomen posted 17 wins in the 2008 season and reached as high as No. 9 in the NFHCA rankings. Sowry's teams also produced solid defensive efforts, being consistently ranked among the nation's top 10 in shutouts and goals-against average.
Prior to her time at UMass, Sowry served as a USA High Performance Coach with the U.S. Field Hockey Association (USFHA) from 2003-07. During her stint there, she was the director of all goalkeeping programs, and the camp director of the FDIC, High School Open Camp and the Junior National Camp. Sowry coached Amy Tran, who was named the Goalkeeper of the Tournament at the 2006 World Cup in Madrid, Spain in addition to being named to the FIH World Team of the Year.
While Sowry was an assistant coach with the U.S. National team in 2006, the team placed sixth in the world at the games in Madrid. She also assisted with the 2005 Junior National Team which placed seventh in the Junior World Cup in Santiago, Chile. With the USFHA, Sowry wrote the curriculum for the Futures Team goalkeepers each of the last two years.
Before joining the USFHA, Sowry spent a year as an assistant coach for the Stanford University field hockey program (2003).
Sowry began her coaching career at the University of Louisville, where she spent five years (1998-2002) as an assistant coach to Pam Bustin. She aided Bustin in orchestrating one of the most remarkable program-building efforts in the nation. In their first season, the Cardinals snapped a 34-game losing streak and went on to produce winning records in each season from 2000-03 including the MAC conference championship in 2002. She also served as the Assistant Director for field hockey camps at U of L and has taught at various goalkeeping elite clinics since 1993.
The Sydney, Australia-native was a member of the Australian National Hockey Team from 1991-2001. She tallied 128 international appearances, and was a member of the country's 1996 and 2000 Olympic squads. She earned gold medals while playing on World Cup teams in 1994 and 1998. She earned her USA Level III Accreditation and continues to work with USA Field Hockey' U21, 19, 18 and 17 national camps.
Sowry earned her Bachelor's degree in physical education and mathematics from the University of South Australia in 1991.