03.04.13: The great news keeps coming for the CCRI Lady Knights’ basketball program! CCRI Head Coach Kate Lynch will be honored for being named The Women’s Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) Russell Athletic/WBCA JC/CC National Coach of the Year Award. Lynch has led the Lady Knights to an impressive 23-4 record one of the best starts in program history. In addition, the Lady Knights have recently captured their 10th consecutive Region XXI title and second under Coach Lynch who is a perfect two for two.
The RUSSELL ATHLETIC/WBCA National Coach of the Year is presented annually to one coach in each of the collegiate divisions: NCAA Division I, NCAA Division II, NCAA Division III, NAIA, and Junior College/Community College as well as High School. All six RUSSELL ATHLETIC/WBCA National Coaches of the Year are presented annually at the RUSSELL ATHLETIC/WBCA Coach of the Year Luncheon at the WBCA National Convention. The event will be held Monday April 8th in New Orleans, LA.
The award measures Team success during current season, Team improvement from previous season, Fulfillment of team potential, and Professional manner and attitude of coach. Coaches are nominated by all collegiate WBCA member head or assistant coaches are eligible to nominate an individual in any award region who fits the above criteria. A selection committee in each division chooses the RUSSELL ATHLETIC/WBCA National Coach of the Year via a conference call from the pool of Regional Coaches of the Year. NCAA Division III always includes their Final Four coaches in the pool of nominees. JC/CC does not have Regional Coaches of the Year, therefore all nominees are considered for this award.
Coach Lynch commented about receiving the award: "It is certainly a huge honor and I am still at a loss for words, but I really see it as more of a team award. I would not have had this opportunity if it was not for my amazing staff. I have two assistants who work so hard every day, on and off the court, and go above and beyond to make our program successful. This award belongs to our players too. They are the ones who get out on the court every single day and go to battle. Because of their determination, hard work, and focus, they have brought this program to the level it is at today. If it wasn't for my staff and players, I certainly would not have had the opportunity to even be considered for this honor. I am truly blessed to be surrounded by such great people."
CCRI Director of Athletics Joe Pavone commented “The Community College of Rhode Island is proud and honored to have our Women’s Head Coach Kate Lynch selected as this year’s Coach of the Year by the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association. Kate has guided her team to success this season both on the court and in the classroom. Her continued commitment to the Lady Knights program and its success truly sets the standard for young women in college athletics.”
CCRI women’s basketball team administrator and CCRI Compliance Officer Bev Wiley, who has been a long-standing advocate for Title IX and gender equity in athletics also added: “One of Kate’s strongest qualities both on the court and in the classroom is that she gets her student athletes to believe in themselves and inspires them to do more than they think they can. Her passion for the sport and the coaching profession is what makes her a great coach. This passion is infectious which motivates and inspires her student athletes to work hard and be successful.”
The Community College of Rhode Island, New England’s largest comprehensive community college, enrolls nearly 18,000 students in credit courses and thousands more in non-credit and job training classes. Its athletic program boasts 12 varsity programs and an academic support program for all student-athletes.