Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 6/16/20 – From Press Release
Associate Vice President and Director of Athletics Sean Sullivan announced Sunday that Jon Sax (St. Joseph’s Prep), a former player and assistant coach at perennial power Tufts University with two national championships and six NESCAC titles to his credit, has been hired as the Head Men’s Lacrosse Coach at Catholic University.
“I am tremendously excited to welcome Jon to our department and University,” said Sullivan. “We had a very impressive candidate pool, but Jon’s programmatic vision, culture creating plans, and leadership experiences within one of the strongest programs in Division III, set him apart. He understands how to construct a student-athlete experience that is based on the fundamentals of accountability, selflessness and trust and will undoubtedly provide our players with both growth-oriented opportunities and a framework to competitively excel.”
Sax comes to Catholic after serving as the defensive coordinator at Colgate University in the Patriot League where he implemented a new defensive system and philosophy as the team faced No. 10 North Carolina and No. 5 Syracuse in its first two games of the 2020 season. He also recruited 11 members of the 2021 recruiting class, including five, 4-star recruits and the No. 41-ranked recruit in the nation.
“First and foremost, I want to thank Sean Sullivan, Dr. Judi Biggs Garbuio and the rest of the search committee for the opportunity,” said Sax. “Being chosen to mentor and coach at a faith and service-based institution as prestigious as Catholic is truly humbling and is a role I embrace as an honor and a privilege. I could not be more excited to begin building relationships with our players, members of the athletic department and the Catholic University community.”
Prior to Colgate, Sax served as the defensive coordinator at his alma mater from 2017-19. The Jumbos posted a record of 50-10 during his three seasons while making three NCAA Division III Men’s Lacrosse Championship appearances.
Tufts went a combined 37-4, won two NESCAC championships and advanced to the national quarterfinals in 2018 and 2019. With the Jumbos, he developed four All-Americans, managed daily operations, including scouting reports, film breakdown, practice planning and devised player development sessions. He also organized professional development events for alumni and players.
“What a great hire by Catholic University,” said Tufts head men’s lacrosse coach Casey D’Annolfo. “Jon Sax is a tremendous young coach with incredible potential. He is a fantastic tactician, a strong culture builder and tireless worker. Catholic University is getting a great one and he is the right type of guy to take men’s lacrosse to the next level. I’m very excited to watch the Catholic program excel with him at the helm.”
As a defender for the Jumbos from 2013-16, Sax won four NESCAC titles, back-to-back national championships in 2014 and 2015 and was a finalist in 2016. As a senior, he appeared in 22 of the team’s 23 games while making 21 starts.
During Sax’s seven-year association with the men’s lacrosse program at Tufts from 2013-19, the Jumbos totaled a 128-22 record, including a mark of 21-5 in seven NCAA tournament appearances and 2-1 in national championship games. They also won six NESCAC championships and were ranked in the top 10 of the final USILA Division III Coaches Poll six times.
“Jon has experienced and directly contributed to the level of daily dedication that is required to be the very best at your craft,” added Sullivan. “That knowledge, matched with a strong commitment to comprehensive player development, provides him with a brand of relationship building and leadership skill that will resonate with our student-athletes. I look forward to watching our men’s lacrosse team aspire and achieve under his tutelage.”
Sax received his bachelor of science degree in psychology from Tufts with honors in May 2016. He is also steeped in Catholic education and its mission, having graduated from St. Joseph’s Prep in Philadelphia.
“This is a great hire for Catholic as I hold Jon Sax in the highest regard,” said Brown head men’s lacrosse coach Mike Daly who coached Sax at Tufts and led the Jumbos to 244 wins, nine NCAA appearances, seven NESCAC titles and three national championships from 1999-2016. “He is tough, hard working, and authentic. He will do a tremendous job and I am excited for the future of Catholic men’s lacrosse.”
A native of Villanova, Sax trained cadets at the United States Military Academy’s Center for Enhanced Performance in performance psychology, devising cadet training and program evaluation protocols with Academy officials and instructors.