By Chris Goldberg
Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 9/25/12
Jef Hewlings, who built several Philly boys’ lacrosse programs into powers in the 1980s and 1990s and recently at Emmaus, was officially named head coach of Strath Haven on Monday.
Hewlings had successful stints at Malvern Prep and Penncrest early in his career. At Emmaus, Hewlings led the Green Hornets to four league titles and two appearances in the Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association (PIAA) quarterfinals in his four-year term (2008-11).
Hewlings guided Emmaus to a record of 66-22 and won the Penn Valley League crown in 2008 and then the Lehigh Valley Conference titles from 2009-11. His Hornets claimed the District 11 championship in 2009 and 2010.
Hewlings, who served as a part-time volunteer assistant last year at Ridley, left the Emmaus post due to a time conflict with his full-time job. But his work schedule changed, allowing him to pursue a new job.
Hewlings replaces David Waldman, who resigned this summer after 11 years as head coach (124-96 record).
“I think I knew I wanted again to be a head coach and, of course, the Central League schools are always an attractive option,” Hewlings said. “Frankly, my job has changed. It needed to be the right time; it’s such that I can make that commitment now.”
Hewlings said his goals at Strath Haven – a perennial playoff team – will not be based on winning percentage in Year One.
“We’re not measuring the team goals in terms of wins and losses,” he said. “The goal is to make sure the kids have a great experience – the wins take care of themselves when that happens.”
Hewlings said he likes a team that uses transition and plays strong defense at both ends.
“I would say my inclination is – personnel-willing – is to play up-tempo,” he said. “We want to push it at both ends and, frankly, one of the goals is to make something happen on our rides. That’s a really specialized part of the game and one we should take advantage of.”
Hewlings, a Ridley grad who played college lacrosse for West Chester, helped build fellow Central League member Penncrest into a power from 1989-99. In his last two seasons at Penncrest the Lions reached the semifinals of the Pennsylvania Scholastic Lacrosse Association playoffs.
Hewlings also coached at Malvern Prep and was an assistant there from 1981-82 before taking the helm and building that program into an Inter-Ac League contender. 83-87
In 2000 Hewlings started the program at Oneonta High in central New York. He also was an assistant at Hartwick College for five years before coming to Emmaus.
Hewlings also is a board member for the Philadelphia Lacrosse Association who heads the New Start Program, which helps build new lacrosse programs in underserved areas.
Tags: Strath Haven