LEXINGTON, Va. -- Jim Stagnitta, the winningest lacrosse coach in Washington and Lee history, has resigned in order to take over the lacrosse program at Rutgers University.
"Although I'm honored to have the opportunity and challenge offered by Rutgers University, this is a bitter sweet time for myself and my family," said Stagnitta. "The relationships and experiences that we have enjoyed at Washington and Lee can not be duplicated. I'm confident that we accomplished our goals set in 1989 and the program is in position to continue competing not only at the top level of Division III, but at the top level of intercollegiate lacrosse as a whole."
In his 12 seasons at W&L, Stagnitta posted a 136-42 (.764) overall record and guided the Generals to six ODAC Championships and five NCAA Tournament berths. The Generals have been nationally ranked in each of his 12 seasons and had won at least nine games every season.
"For the past 12 years, Jim Stagnitta has been an outstanding coach for the Washington and Lee lacrosse program," said Mike Walsh, W&L Director of Athletics. "He has produced an unparalleled tradition of success for our lacrosse program. Jim has accomplished this through effective recruiting, quality coaching and building lifelong relationships with his players. We are sad to see him leave although we can appreciate his desire to coach on the Division I level. Our challenge now is to find someone that can maintain the level of excellence that Jim has brought to our men's lacrosse program."
Stagnitta's team's finished no lower than fifth in the final Division III rankings over the past four seasons in posting a 56-8 (.875) overall record during that span. His 2000 squad advanced to the NCAA Tournament semifinals in amassing a school-record 16 victories against just two losses.
Washington and Lee finished the 2001 season ranked third in the final poll with a 14-1 overall record. W&L spent four weeks as the top ranked team in Division III.
A national search for Stagnitta's replacement will begin shortly.
-- GENERALS --