By Chris Goldberg
Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 8/14/09
Kate Henwood, a standout player at La Salle who spent the past three years as an assistant at Villanova, has been named head coach at her alma mater, Garnet Valley High.
“I never saw myself coming back, but now that I am here, I’m really excited to be working with the same girls I have a lot in common with,” said Henwood, a social studies teacher at Garnet Valley Middle School. “It’s very convenient for me. Before, I had two full-time jobs; one as a Division I coach and another as a social studies teacher.”
Henwood was a four-year starter and captain for two years at La Salle. She ranks among the leaders on the Explorers all-time list in goals (102), assists (31) and points (133) and was an All-Atlantic Ten Conference and academic all-conference choice during her career.
She was hired as a long term substitute at nearby Penncrest after graduation and served as head coach of the lacrosse team that year. The following year she was hired as a full-time teacher at Garnet Valley MS (8th grade social studies) and that winter she accepted the post as an assistant at Villanova to Jebb Chagan.
Henwood, who also has coached club lacrosse, hopes to make the Jaguars a contender in the Central League. In their first two years of play in the powerful Central League, the Jags have struggled for wins while playing mostly underclassmen.
“I am looking for us to be more competitive in the Central League,” said Henwood, who was an assistant soccer coach at GV in 2006 and will return to that post this fall. “I (taught) a lot of the incoming freshmen; we have a really good pool of young talent.
“Obviously, there are a lot of traditions that already exist. I want to focus on the culture of the program and I want everyone to know there is a reason for everything we’ll do. Hopefully, we’ll not only produce great lacrosse players, but people who are ready for the next step no matter what they do.”
Henwood said her experience in college coaching under Chagan – a former standout goalie at Widener who coached the boys’ team at Friends’ Central before moving to women’s coaching – will only help. Henwood hopes to use some lacrosse strategies that work for both boys’ and girls’ lacrosse.
“I am looking to be pretty innovative,” she said. “I’d like to put in a couple defenses and have enough depth at the midfield use midfield lines,” she said. “I gave up coaching this year against (Syracuse coach and playing legend Gary) Gait, (Navy’s legendary) Cindy Timchal and Jen Adams of Loyola.
“It was great to compete against coaches of that caliber. I did learn a lot, and I am eager to see what I can with that knowledge and how I can adapt to this age level.”
Henwood, a 2005 La Salle grad, also was invited to try out for the United States Developmental squad and participated in the U.S. Lacrosse National Tournament.
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