HAVERFORD, Pa. – Haverford College Director of Athletics Wendy Smith '87 has announced the hiring of Katie Zichelli as the Fords' next head women's lacrosse coach. Zichelli comes to Haverford after spending the last three seasons as the assistant coach/associate head coach at Franklin & Marshall College.
"I am very excited and honored to be joining the Haverford College community," said Zichelli. "I look forward to building upon the existing success of the women's lacrosse program. I would also like to thank Wendy and all the members of the search committee for this opportunity."
"I am excited to welcome Katie to the Haverford athletic department as our new head women's lacrosse coach," stated Smith. "Former coach Lauren Wray has left a solid foundation for Katie whose emphasis on excellence for both the student and athlete made her an ideal selection. I look forward to her leadership in developing a program that will reflect Haverford's emphasis on academic success, the core values of trust, concern and respect, and the pursuit of excellence at the conference and national level."
During her time with the Diplomats, Zichelli had a hand in all aspects of the program that won two Centennial Conference Championships (2015, 17), made two appearances in the NCAA Final Four (2015, 16), and had another trip to the NCAA Sweet Sixteen (2017). Her work was instrumental in helping the Diplomats to a 58-11 record over those three seasons, including a 25-2 mark in Centennial Conference matchups.
In addition to her work recruiting, scouting, developing practice plans, and organizing clinics, Zichelli was primarily in charge of the Franklin & Marshall defense that led the Centennial Conference in caused turnovers during each of her three seasons while also collecting the most ground balls during two of those years. Her defense never finished outside of the top 12 teams in Division III in goals against average, ranking as high as seventh in 2016 when her unit allowed just 5.92 goals per game.
Prior to her time as an assistant at Franklin & Marshall, Zichelli got her start in college coaching as the top assistant at Susquehanna University during the 2012 through 2014 seasons. Susquehanna made the NCAA Tournament in each of her final two seasons, winning the 2013 Landmark Conference Championship. Zichelli was named the IWLCA Division III Assistant Coach of the Year in 2013 and was part of the Landmark's Coaching Staff of the Year on two occasions (2012, 13).
Outside of college coaching, Zichelli has head coach experience with the Xtreme Lacrosse Club in Lancaster, Pa. and previously spent three summers as the head coach of the STEPS Lacrosse Club in Chester, N.J.
Zichelli graduated from Lock Haven in 2011 with bachelor's degree in management and marketing. During her time as a student-athlete with the Division II Bald Eagles, she was a two-year captain who led the team to three Pennsylvania State Athletics Conference (PSAC) Championships (2009, 10, 11) and a pair of Division II runner-up finishes (2009, 10). A four-time All-American who earned first-team accolades during each of her final three seasons, Zichelli was twice named the IWLCA Division II Defender of the Year (2009, 11). She was named the NCAA statistical champion in both ground balls and caused turnovers during the 2009 and 2010 seasons.