St. Ambrose is putting its men’s and women’s lacrosse programs in the hands of an experienced collegiate head coach.
Frank Rogers, who has spent the past five seasons leading the NCAA Division II women’s program at the University of Montevallo in Alabama, was named Thursday to coach both Fighting Bees programs.
With a background in the sport covering more than four decades, Rogers has been a head coach at the collegiate level for the past 12 years and has nearly 25 years of coaching experience.
"We were looking for somebody with significant experience as a head coach and with a background of building programs and recruiting the sport," St. Ambrose director of athletics Ray Shovlain said. "Frank has a history of developing programs and brings to St. Ambrose what we need at this time."
A New York native, Rogers was the first head coach for women’s lacrosse programs at Aquinas College in Michigan, Brevard College in North Carolina and most recently at Montevallo. He also coached the men’s program at Aquinas.
At St. Ambrose, he inherits a men’s program which finished 6-9 this spring, including a 1-5 record against Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference competition, and a women’s program which went 8-4 overall and took second place in the KCAC with a 4-2 record.
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The men’s program at St. Ambrose recently completed its sixth season while the school has offered a women’s program for the past two years.
Both face increased recruiting competition because of the recent growth in the number of collegiate programs in the Midwest, and Shovlain said experience in that area was important.
"Recruiting is a major issue in lacrosse right now," Shovlain said. "Frank is already reaching out to the players we have committed to St. Ambrose for the upcoming year, and with the contacts he has developed across the country, he has a game plan to build our recruiting base in lacrosse."
Prior to beginning the program at Aquinas, Rogers coached the men’s and women’s club teams at Western Michigan and spent nine years as a high school boys lacrosse coach in Michigan and New York.
His most recent team at Montevallo finished 6-10, including a 3-5 record in the Gulf South Conference.