PISCATAWAY, N.J. (December 14, 2011) – Rutgers University Director of Intercollegiate Athletics Tim Pernetti has extended head women’s lacrosse coach Laura Brand-Sias’ contract through the 2015 season, it was announced Wednesday. Brand-Sias’ new contract begins immediately and runs through June 30, 2015.
Brand-Sias enters her 10th season as head coach at Rutgers. A former Scarlet Knight standout in her own right, Brand-Sias has pushed the Rutgers program to new heights throughout her tenure.
“Laura’s success, not only on the field, but in the classroom and the community is consistent with our mission at Rutgers,” said Pernetti. “As a former Scarlet Knight, Laura understands the day-to-day demands of a Rutgers student-athlete. She has set a standard of excellence for her team and we look forward to the continued growth of the program under Laura’s leadership.”
“I would like to thank Tim Pernetti for this opportunity and his confidence in my ability to lead this program,” said Brand-Sias. “Being an alumna of this program, the positive changes that have taken place over the last two years are extremely exciting. The support of the administration, especially [Senior Associate AD/Senior Woman Administrator] Kate Hickey, has put us in a great place for both immediate and long-term success. I am very thankful and excited for the future of Rutgers women’s lacrosse.”
During her nine-year tenure, Brand-Sias has built a foundation for national prominence in one of the nation’s toughest leagues. Brand-Sias hit the second-most victories in school history in 2003 and 2007 with 12 wins. She has led Rutgers to a 78-57 (.578) record as the sixth head coach of the program and was named BIG EAST Coach of the Year in her inaugural season.
While preaching a team-first mentality, Brand-Sias has helped many Scarlet Knights reach individual success. Under the coach’s watch, 25 Scarlet Knights have received All-BIG EAST postseason selections, and 24 players were named to the IWLCA All-Region teams. Last season, the squad placed five Scarlet Knights on the All-Mid-Atlantic Region Team, the most since 1985. Brand-Sias has also mentored two IWLCA All-Americans, including 2010 pick Brooke Cantwell.
Rutgers enjoyed a standout season in 2010, jumping out to its best start (5-0) in program history. RU finished the year 11-5 overall and ranked in the final regular season IWLCA Top-20 Poll.
Brand-Sias has also stressed success in the classroom, as RU was named an IWLCA All-Academic Squad for the third-consecutive year in 2011 by maintaining a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher. Rutgers also earned a perfect APR score in May and had 20 of its 28 members selected as a BIG EAST Academic All-Star.
Under the direction of Brand-Sias, Rutgers has also been very involved in the community. The team became involved with the Friends of Jaclyn charitable organization in 2008 after adopting Genna Camiolo, who suffers from pediatric brain tumors. The Scarlet Knights also assist with the Special Olympics, run in the Big Chill and participate in food drives, toy and blood drives and Read Across America.
Follow Rutgers Athletics on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/RutgersAthletics) and Twitter (@RUAthletics) for all of the latest news and updates. For specific updates regarding women’s lacrosse, follow the program on Twitter (@rulaxbrand). Fans can receive timely information, including special offers and giveaways throughout the year on our social media outlets along with http://www.ScarletKnights.com.