The only head coach to lead the University of Louisville women's lacrosse team, Kellie Young enters her sixth season at the helm of the program after building an impressive resume on the field and in the classroom in the same role at James Madison.
In the program's five-year existence, she has led the Cardinals to four-straight 10-win seasons and a trip to the BIG EAST Tournament semifinals in the program's inaugural year in the conference. At Louisville, Young has guided her student-athletes to nine all-conference honors, 10 all-region accolades, and one to All-America status. Academically, her team has been recognized by the Intercollegiate Women's Lacrosse Association each of the past three years.
Last season, the Cardinals were a team dominated by youth. Young's squad, though, earned top -20 status nationally in draw controls (No. 9) and caused turnovers (No. 18), and two players earned postseason honors. Nikki Boltja, notably, earned all-BIG EAST and IWLCA all-region honors after ranking in the top five nationally in goals per game. Academically, two student-athletes earned accolades and the team was recognized for its grade-point average for the third-straight year by the IWLCA.
In 2011, Young guided the Cardinals to their fourth-straight 10-win season, concluding the year with a 10-7 overall mark. The Cardinals cruised through the first part of the season, opening the year with six-straight wins. Arguably, the highlight of the year came a few weeks later when Louisville, ranked No. 20 at the time, knocked off its highest ranked opponent in school history in 13th-ranked Vanderbilt. The Cardinals concluded the year ranked in the top-25 nationally in a variety of categories: No. 2 in draw controls, No. 5 in ground balls per game, No. 9 in scoring offense, No. 13 in scoring margin, No. 21 in points and No. 25 in caused turnovers.
Under Young's watch, Bergan Foley again was among the country's elite on offense. Behind 65 goals, an average of 3.82 per game, and 71 points, Foley became the program's first All-American, as she was named an IWLCA third-team selection. The program's all-time leader in a number of categories, Foley concluded her career at Louisville with 265 goals, the fourth most in NCAA Division I history. Along with Foley, four other players earned all-region honors - the five selections is the most in program history - and four earned all-BIG EAST accolades. The team was recognized for its academic achievements, garnering the IWLCA Academic Squad status. Individually, Sammy Allen and Katie Zoeller earned individual IWLCA Honor Roll status.
In 2010, Louisville raced out to a 4-0 record and closed the season with an 11-6 overall mark. The squad finished the year with multiple highlights, one of which featured an upset victory at 19th-ranked Rutgers. Individually, Foley and Katie Oliverio become arguably the most dangerous tandem nationally. For the second time in her career, Foley was the nation's leader in goals per game (4.59) and ranked first nationally in goals (78), while Oliverio ranked first in assists per game (2.71) and second in assists (46). Collectively, the team ranked in the top-10 nationally in multiple categories: draw controls (No. 2), scoring offense (No. 3), ground balls per game (No. 7) and caused turnovers (No. 8).
With the team's strong performances, accolades at the conclusion of the year came as no surprise. At the conference level, Foley was tabbed a first team all-BIG EAST selection, while two others earned second team all-conference honors. Foley and Emily Dashiell were recognized regionally, as the duo was named IWLCA all-West/Midwest Region second-team honorees. Away from the playing surface, the team was tabbed an IWLCA Academic Squad for boasting a cumulative grade-point average of 3.0 or higher. Individually, the association recognized Allen and Zoeller to the IWLCA Honor Roll.
The 2009 season marked the Cardinals' inaugural year of lacrosse in the BIG EAST. U of L posted a 10-7 record and earned one of the four coveted spots in the conference championship, where it faced Georgetown. Again, Young's squad showcased a high-octane offense, led by Foley's 61 goals. She finished fifth nationally in goals per game (3.81) and 10th in total goals. A scrappy and tenacious defense also came to define Young's team, as Louisville finished in the top five in both caused turnovers and ground balls. One of the highlights of the season was an upset of No. 16-ranked Loyola in a 13-12 thriller.
In the program's inaugural season in 2008, Young led U of L to an impressive 12-4 record, including five-straight wins to close the season.
U of L was one of the nation's top teams on offense in 2008, ranking fifth nationally in scoring and draw controls. The Cardinals were sixth in scoring margin, seventh in caused turnovers and ninth in win percentage. Along with the team success in 2008, Young's Cardinals also enjoyed individual success, as Foley led the nation in goals per game at 4.07 per contest.
Prior to taking the reins of the Louisville lacrosse program, Young earned a 51-24 career record in four seasons as head coach at JMU, where she led the Dukes to three NCAA Tournament appearances, including two quarterfinal appearances, three Colonial Athletic Association titles and a top-five national ranking. In 2006, the Dukes were 15-5 overall, including a 6-1 mark in the CAA en route to sweeping the regular season and tournament titles, and advanced to the quarterfinals of the NCAA Tournament for the second time in three years. The Dukes capped the 2006 season with two players earning IWLCA/U.S. Lacrosse All-America honors, while Young earned CAA Coach of the Year honors.
In her four seasons at James Madison, Young coached seven All-America honorees, three CAA Player of the Year award winners, two national player of the year finalists and one national defender of the year winner. Former assistants Lisa Staedt and Matt Lawicki, both of whom were on Young's coaching staff at JMU during the 2006 season, followed her to Louisville.
In 2004, Young led JMU to a school-record 16 wins, including a record setting 11-game winning streak and a perfect 7-0 league mark, and an appearance in the NCAA quarterfinals. Four members of that 2004 squad earned All-America recognition. Notably, midfielder Gail Decker was a finalist for the Tewaaraton Trophy and the Honda Award; both are national player of the year awards. Other individual award winners for the 2004 JMU team included Jessica Beard, the womenslacrosse.com Defender of the Year, and Johanna Buchholz, the Aimee Willard Award winner, which signifies the top collegiate player at the U.S. Lacrosse National Tournament.
In 2003, Young's first season as the Dukes' coach, she led JMU to a 13-6 record, the CAA championship and a berth in the 16-team NCAA Tournament. Under her guidance, the Dukes defeated top-ranked Maryland and also posted key wins over nationally ranked Penn State, Dartmouth and Yale. All but one of JMU's regular-season losses were to teams ranked in the top six nationally, including a one goal loss to eventual NCAA runner-up Virginia. Staedt was a finalist for the Tewaaraton Trophy. Young closed the 2003 campaign by being selected to coach in the North-South Senior All-Star Game.
Under Young's guidance, the Dukes not only excelled on the field but also in the classroom. In her first three seasons at JMU, the Dukes had 37 players honored by the CAA with the Commissioner's Academic Award, while 27 players received the JMU AD's Scholar Athlete Award, and 10 more were named to the IWLCA Academic Honor Roll.
Prior to taking over the reins at James Madison, Young was the first assistant for four seasons at Georgetown. There, Young helped lead GU to a NCAA runner-up finishes in 2001 and 2002 and NCAA quarterfinal appearances in 1999 and 2000. Georgetown had a record of 57-16 during her tenure. She also has coaching experience at two Division III institutions, as she served as head lacrosse and soccer coach at Sweet Briar (Va.) College from 1996-98 and assistant lacrosse coach at Amherst (Mass.) College from 1994-96.
Young is a 1993 graduate of Mount Holyoke College in South Hadley, Mass., where she was a two-time (1992, 1993) all-region and all-conference selection in lacrosse, was co-captain as a senior and earned Mount Holyoke's Ruth C. Timm Award as the team's most outstanding player. The Lyons' 1993 record of 13-4 still stands as the best mark in school history. Overall, Young earned nine varsity letters in four sports - lacrosse, soccer, softball and basketball - at Mount Holyoke. In 1993, she received Mount Holyoke's Athletic Director's Award for service to Mount Holyoke athletics and the local community.
Following her collegiate playing career, Young continued to compete on the field as a player from 1999-2002. She was a member of the U.S. National Development Team. In 1999, Young gained international playing experience, competing for the U.S. in test matches against the English National Team.
Young also has been actively involved with the overall state of the game in the United States, having served on the executive committee of the Women's Division Board of Governors for U.S. Lacrosse from 1998-2005. As vice president, she chaired the competitions committee that oversees the U.S. Lacrosse National Tournament, the premiere event for women's lacrosse in the country. Currently, Young is in her second season serving on the IWLCA Weekly National Ranking and all-Region committees.
The Massachusetts native holds a bachelor's degree in political science and women's studies from Mount Holyoke College and earned a master's degree in sport management from Massachusetts in 1997. Young has two daughters, MacKay and Hadley.