Hofstra University

Hofstra University Men's Lacrosse
Margiotta Hall 120 Hofstra University Hempstead, NY 115492300
Division 1 New York Northeast
Private Medium National competitor


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Shannon Smith

Shannon Smith, a three-time first-team lacrosse All-American who is among the most decorated players in the sport, is entering her seventh season as the head women's lacrosse coach at Hofstra University in 2019.

Smith became the ninth head coach in the history of the Hofstra Women’s Lacrosse program in July 2012.

Smith has coached the Pride to 49 wins in her first six seasons and led her squad to the Colonial Athletic Association Championship Tournament three times.

The 2018 campaign saw Hofstra win eight games for the second consecutive season against a schedule that featured seven teams that advanced to the NCAA Tournament. The future was on display for Hofstra in 2018 as well as all four of the Pride’s postseason honorees from the CAA were either sophomores or freshmen.

In 2017, Smith led Hofstra to eight victories as the program took a major step forward and upped its overall win total by five victories and increased its CAA wins as well. Individually she oversaw the development of several standouts, as Alyssa Parrella, Drew Shapiro, Alexa Mattera and Darcie Smith all earned awards from the CAA. Parrella arguably had one of the best freshman seasons in the nation as she picked up CAA and ECAC Rookie of the Year accolades.

Hofstra won a trio of games in 2016 as the team was decimated by injuries throughout the season. Following the season four Pride student-athletes would earn awards from the CAA, including Lindsay Scott as a member of the first team and Lindsey Alfano on the second team.

The 2015 season would see Smith lead Hofstra to an 11-win season and a regular season CAA title after finishing the regular season with a perfect 6-0 mark in conference play. It marked Hofstra’s first-ever perfect season in CAA play and the first time the Pride went undefeated in regular season league play since going 6-0 in the America East Conference in 2001. In just her third season at the helm of the program she led Hofstra to the number one seed in the conference tournament for the first time since the 2007 campaign. Smith’s stellar season leading the Pride garnered her CAA Coach of the Year accolades. She became the first Hofstra coach to win that award since 2005.

Smith has led Hofstra student-athletes to significant awards during her time at the helm. Brittain Altomare became Hofstra’s eighth-ever IWLCA All-American when she was named to the third team in 2015. She also garnered CAA Player of the Year honors, the Pride’s first-ever CAA Player of the Year honoree and first since 1996. She also coached April Iannetta to back-to-back CAA Defensive Player of the Year Awards in 2013 and 2014, as well as Becky Conto to the 2013 CAA Rookie of the Year Award.

In 2014 Hofstra posted an 8-10 record while finishing 12th in the nation in scoring defense. Junior goalkeeper Kelsey Gregerson ranked fourth in the country in save percentage and eighth in goals against average. In addition to Iannetta’s Defensive Player of the Year trophy, five other players received All-CAA accolades and two (Brittain Altomare and Iannetta) were named to the IWLCA all-region team.

In her first season at the helm, Smith led the Pride to an 11-8 mark and a berth in the CAA Championship game. The Pride posted a six-win improvement from 2012 and ranked in the top 20 nationally in scoring defense, ground balls per game and caused turnovers. Iannetta shared the CAA Defensive Player of the Year Award, Conto took home CAA Rookie of the Year accolades and Altomare set a new school record for assists under Smith’s tutelage.

Smith also has extensive coaching experience in the professional ranks as well as in the summer of 2016, Smith coached the Long Island Sound of the United Women’s Lacrosse League to the title in the inaugural season of the professional women’s lacrosse league. She added to her professional experience in 2018 as she was named the head coach of the New York Fight of the Women’s Professional Lacrosse League that begins play in 2018.

Smith completed a four-year playing career at Northwestern in May 2012. Among her many highlights included winning three NCAA titles, earning three first team All-American honors (2010, 2011, 2012) and capturing the 2011 Tewaaraton (presented annually to the NCAA women's and men's lacrosse player of the year) and lacrosse Honda (recognized as the top collegiate female athlete in her sport, and the award is considered by many as one of the highest honors a female college athlete can receive in the nation) Awards.

Smith’s incredible career at Northwestern was recognized in 2017 as it was announced she will be inducted into the Northwestern Athletics Hall of Fame this year. In addition, she was also inducted into the Suffolk Sports Hall of Fame in 2018.

Smith is very adept at the business side of lacrosse as well. Since 2009, she has served as a director with Long Island Top Guns girls lacrosse club. Smith has assisted with every aspect of the club and helped organize and coach a training program for over 300 players. From managing the business side of the club to coaching teams, Smith has played a vital role in the development of one of the top club programs in the area. Through her work with Long Island Top Guns, Smith manages a total of four camps, while overseeing a staff of over 20 people.

Smith’s immense experience at the highest level of lacrosse continues with her extensive US Lacrosse career. She was named to the roster for the 2012-14 U.S. women’s national senior team. Smith also was part of the 2011-12 U.S. women’s national training team and the 2007 U.S. women’s national under-19 team. As a member of the U-19 squad, she helped lead the team to the Gold Medal at the 2007 World Cup.

In June 2012 Smith coached the North squad at the 2012 Under Armour All-America Lacrosse Classic.

A key player on three teams that captured NCAA titles at Northwestern (2009, 2011, 2012), Smith was the Most Outstanding Player of the 2011 and 2012 Championships. During her career, she scored 58 points in the NCAA Tournament to rank second all-time in that category.

Smith is not defined solely by her postseason honors and awards, though, as she totaled 254 goals, 108 assists and 362 points during her career. Her goals total ranks first all-time in program history, while she is second all-time in points and third in assists. Her 86 goals in 2011 are a single-season record for the Northwestern program. In addition, she ranks eighth all-time in NCAA Division I women’s lacrosse in points and ninth in goals.

She played in 91 games during her career at Northwestern, adding 118 draw controls, 85 ground balls and 28 caused turnovers. Smith had 19 game-winning goals during her career and her 2011 season was her most prolific with 86 goals, 42 assists, 128 points, 39 draw controls, 25 ground balls and eight caused turnovers.

Smith has done charitable work in the Long Island community as well. She is actively involved with the Friends of Jacyln Foundation and Our Lady of Grace Garden. She also helped lead a group of counselors at the South Bay Elementary School (West Babylon, New York) Lacrosse Camp to raise $6,500 towards the reconstruction of the school after a fire. At Hofstra, she has continued the women’s lacrosse programs involvement with the HEADstrong Foundation as well as the Stephen Siller Tunnel To Towers Foundation.

A native of West Babylon, New York, Smith attended West Babylon High School where she was a six-time letter-winner and was a member of the varsity squad starting in seventh grade. Smith was one of the top scholastic lacrosse players to ever come out of Long Island as she had 729 points on 505 goals and 224 assists during her career. Both the points and goals totals are New York state records as is her 129 goals in 2006.

Smith received her bachelor of science in liberal arts, with a major in economics and minor in business institutions program, from Northwestern.

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Amanda Johansen

Amanda Johansen is in her first season with the Hofstra Women's Lacrosse program in 2019.

Johansen spent the 2018 season as an assistant coach at the University of Southern California. While with the Women of Troy she helped guide USC to a 10-win campaign and assisted in the development of five student-athletes earning all-conference honors from the Pac-12 and three earning IWLCA All-Region accolades. Johansen served as the offensive coordinator for USC and help lead a unit that averaged 12 goals per game.

Prior to working at USC, Johansen spent a season as a graduate assistant coach at Mount St. Mary’s. She served as the program’s defensive coordinator at Mount St. Mary’s and also oversaw much of the planning as it related to team travel.

Johansen was a decorated student-athlete at USC as she compiled 194 points on 134 goals and 60 assists during her 77-game career with the Women of Troy. She also had 258 draw controls. The 2013 Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Rookie of the Year and a Intercollegiate Women’s Lacrosse Coaches Association Third Team All-American as a senior, she was a team captain in 2015 and 2016 and was an integral part of USC’s first-ever NCAA Tournament appearance and run to the NCAA Quarterfinals as a senior in 2016.

Johansen has also played professionally as she played two seasons with the Baltimore Ride of the United Women’s Lacrosse League and most recently is a member of the Baltimore Brave of the Women’s Professional Lacrosse League.

Johansen, who graduated from USC in 2016, earned her bachelor’s degree in business administration and also received a minor in sports media studies. She earned her master’s degree in sports management from Mount St. Mary’s in 2017.

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Torin Varn

Torin Varn is in his third season as an assistant coach with the Hofstra Women's Lacrosse program in 2019.

Varn serves as the program’s offensive coordinator. In his first season on the staff he helped lead the team to eight wins, a five-win improvement from the previous season. The Pride would win another eight games in 2018 as a young roster set the stage for future successes.

Varn has also established himself in other areas of the sport of women’s lacrosse as he will serve as an assistant coach with the New York Fight of the Women’s Professional Lacrosse League in 2018 and also works extensively with the Long Island Top Guns girls lacrosse club.

Varn, a 2014 graduate of Hofstra with a degree in history, was a four-year member of the Pride Men’s Lacrosse team and earned All-Colonial Athletic Association honors in his senior campaign.

Varn joined the Hofstra program after serving as a volunteer assistant men’s lacrosse coach at Mount St. Mary’s (MD) in 2016. He served as the offensive coordinator for the team and helped four players to all-conference accolades and two players earn spots in the North-South All-Star Game. Varn also assisted in recruiting and handling equipment.

Prior to his position at Mount St. Mary’s, Varn was a graduate assistant coach with the Stevenson men’s lacrosse program from 2014 to 2016. He handled a multitude of tasks with the Mustangs, including recruiting, practice planning, development and academic support.

Varn, a native of Ithaca, New York, also earned his first all-conference honor in 2014 by being named to the All-CAA second team. He started all 16 games on attack as a senior. Varn recorded career-highs of 32 goals, five assists and 37 points and led the team in goals and was second in points. He finished out his career with back-to-back 30-goal seasons. For his career he had 73 goals, nine assists and 82 points.

Varn has also worked various lacrosse camps as part of the Hopkins Hofstra Elite Lax Camp and has extensive volunteer experience with the HEADstrong Foundation, Tunnel to Towers Run and Hurricane Sandy recovery efforts.

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