MERION STATION, Pa. – Former United States National Team member Shannon Taylor will join the Saint Joseph’s field hockey coaching staff in time for the 2016 season. Taylor, who spent three seasons as an assistant at Massachusetts, will serve as the Hawks’ associate head coach.
“I have been honored to welcome and work alongside an outstanding staff over the past two seasons,” head coach Lynn Farquhar said. “Our staff and players group share a special work rate, passion, and loyalty that shape our foundation and program mission. Our program growth on and off the field is a result of individual efforts with a greater belief valuing team.
“I’m thrilled to welcome Shannon to Hawk Hill as an associate head coach,” Farquhar said of Taylor, whom she coached at both Richmond and Syracuse. “Shannon will play a significant role on staff as we look to make strides in the 2016 fall season. She brings a wealth of knowledge as an established player and coach both at both the collegiate and international level. Her character and journey to find success are essential keys to our program; Shannon resembles ‘the magis’ and Saint Joseph’s mission.”
“I am very excited to join the Hawk Family and be able to coach with Lynn, who was one of my mentors when I played,” Taylor said. “It is an honor to work for SJU and I look forward to working with the athletes not only on the playing field but in the classroom as well."
Taylor, who graduated from Syracuse in 2008, has spent three of the past four seasons as an assistant coach at Massachusetts, helping guide the Minutewomen to a pair of Atlantic 10 championships. She joined the staff in Amherst in 2012 before taking a year off the play with the National Team. After her international retirement, Taylor returned to the UMass staff for the 2014 and 2015 seasons, the latter of which saw the Minutewomen claim the A-10 title and a victory in an NCAA Tournament play-in game.
A 2012 Olympian, Taylor was involved with USA Field Hockey as a player for seven years, beginning with her selection to the under-21 squad in 2006. Taylor then played for the developmental squad before being named to the National Team in 2010. She was a key part of the United States side that won gold at the 2011 Pan American Games, scoring three goals in the final tournament, including one in the gold medal match against Argentina. Taylor was then named to the team that participated in the 2012 Olympic Games in London.
Taylor enjoyed a successful collegiate playing career as well. She played for three seasons at Richmond, helping lead the Spiders to three consecutive regular season and conference tournament doubles; during her time with the Spiders, UR did not lose a game to a conference foe. Taylor was named the Atlantic 10 Offensive Player of the Year in 2006 after leading the conference in both goals and points for two consecutive seasons. Her 69 points scored in 2006 remain the highest single-season total in conference history.
After redshirting for a year, Taylor played her final season at Syracuse, where she earned All-America and All-Big East First Team honors as the Orange reached the Final Four. Taylor was voted the Big East Championship Most Valuable Player and was named to the All-NCAA Tournament Team as well. Her 31 goals and 79 points in 2008 are both single-season program records that still stand today.
The Hawks will open up their 2016 campaign at Ellen Ryan Field on Friday, August 26, with a matchup against Maryland in the Conference Cup.