Penn women’s lacrosse associate head coach Melissa Lehman has been hired as head coach of Rutgers women’s lacrosse.
Lehman, who graduated from Penn in 2008, had worked alongside head coach Karin Corbett for the past 10 years, guiding the Quakers to a number of impressive performances. During her tenure, Lehman saw the Red and Blue compete in eight Ivy League regular season championships and win three Ivy League Tournament titles. The Quakers also made 10 trips to the NCAA Tournament.
"It is with bittersweet emotion for both me and the entire Penn Women's Lacrosse program that Melissa leaves for the next chapter in her coaching life," Corbett said in a Penn Athletics Statement. "We are all so genuinely excited for her to lead her own team at Rutgers and know she will do a fantastic job to build that program into a national contender. I coached Melissa for four years and had the great privilege to work alongside her for the last 10. She is a true player's coach who challenges them to be their best, while doing so in a supportive and caring way. She has touched so many young lives here at Penn and has been a tremendous role model for all of them. Rutgers is very lucky to get such a great coach, but more importantly, a tremendous person to lead their lacrosse program."
In her last four years at Penn, Lehman had taken on the role of associate head coach. Lehman worked predominantly with the Quakers’ defense and midfield, helping them develop their strategy.
Many of the players Lehman coached have received both All-American and All-Ivy honors. Most recently, rising senior Erin Barry was named Ivy League Midfielder of the Year in 2019, an honor that Alex Condon received in 2017. Barry and Condon have also both been recognized twice as All-Americans at midfield.
"I want to thank Karin for everything she has done for me over the last fifteen years and for preparing me for this next step in my career as a head coach," Lehman said in a Penn Athletics statement. "I am so grateful to have been able to work alongside such an incredible mentor, but more importantly, I am so thankful that she took a chance on me, as a player and a coach, bringing me to Philadelphia and Penn, the place I've called home for nearly half my life."
“Although I am sad to leave the incredible staff and the amazing Penn community, as an alum I will always be cheering on the Red & Blue from afar," Lehman said.
Before she was a coach, Lehman played for Penn’s team from 2005 to 2008. As a player, Lehman was integral in the process of elevating Penn’s status as a team. She helped the team win the Ivy Championship outright two years in a row, in 2007 and 2008. In 2008, when Lehman was captain, the Quakers reached the finals of the NCAA Tournament.
For her efforts as a player, Lehman received two All-Ivy honors; she was named first-team All-Ivy in 2008 and given an honorable mention in 2007.
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