University of NC at Charlotte

9201 University City Blvd Charlotte, NC 28223
Division 1 North Carolina Southeast
Public Very Small Competitive team


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Clare Short

Charlotte 49ers Director of Athletics Mike Hill has announced the hiring of Clare Short as the first head coach to lead the new women’s lacrosse program. Short brings over 10 years of experience, including the last six seasons as head coach at Queens University of Charlotte, multiple trips to the NCAA Div. II Final Four and numerous regular season and tournament conference championships to the 49ers.

“When we made the decision to add women’s lacrosse, it was with every intention of competing at a championship level,” said Mike Hill, Director of Athletics. “Clare Short has a championship pedigree and has built a national power right here in our own city. Her passion and competitive spirit coupled with her remarkable accomplishments as a head coach make her a perfect fit at Charlotte.”

Short has spent the last six years at Queens quickly becoming the program’s all-time winningest coach. Averaging 16 wins in five full seasons and a 5-0 start in 2020 prior to the COVID stoppage, Short guided the Royals to three-straight appearances in the NCAA Div. II Final Four, including an appearance in the national championship game in 2021.

“I am incredibly grateful to Director of Athletics Mike Hill and Executive Associate Athletic Director Ragean Hill for giving me this opportunity,” began Short. “It is such an honor to be named the first head women’s lacrosse coach at such an established university. I am eager to build and represent Niner Nation at the division one lacrosse level. Charlotte has an unmatched athletic department that will attract the top players and allow this program to be one of the best in the country.”

Short, a two-time South Region Coach of the Year, won eight-straight South Atlantic Conference tournament titles with the Royals, seven regular season championships, three South Region titles and four appearances in the NCAA tournament. At Queens, Short coached 15 all-Americans, 22 all-region players and 42 all-conference athletes.

This spring, Short led No. 1 ranked Queens to a 21-1 record. The Royals won their sixth regular season South Atlantic Conference (SAC) championship and seventh SAC tournament title, marking the second-straight year of being the top-ranked team in the country. The lone loss was a heartbreaking 13-12 overtime defeat to third-ranked East Stroudsburg in the national semifinals. The Royals set a new division two record this past season with 463 goals while setting new program records for assists (238), points (701) and draw controls (437).

As a player at Lock Haven University, Short was a four-year starter from 2009-2012 and led the Bald Eagles to four-straight Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) titles and three Elite Eight appearances in the NCAA tournament including the national title game in 2009.

Short’s coaching career began at Randolph-Macon College for one season before joining Queens as an assistant from 2013-2014. Short earned her first head coaching job at Lenoir-Rhyne in November of 2014 before returning to Queens as head coach in July of 2016.

“The city of Charlotte has given me so much in my career already and I’m thrilled to continue it with the 49ers,” continued Short. “It’s been a pleasure recruiting to this region for the past nine years. I am thankful for my time spent building the program at Queens. Charlotte is a desirable city and growing rapidly. It’s the perfect time to bring lacrosse to UNC Charlotte. Along with the city, the 49ers have everything to offer a top recruit. The facility plans that Charlotte has with its EverGreen Master Vision will be an incredible recruiting tool. Everyone on campus has so much passion for success and it feels great to be joining such a winning culture. This is a perfect place to make history with the first-ever women’s lacrosse program.”

Charlotte will begin its first season of play during the 2024-25 season as a member of the American Athletic Conference.

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Sarah Stagaard

Charlotte women's lacrosse head coach Clare Short announces the addition of Sarah Stagaard as the first assistant coach to join the program. Stagaard joins Short after the two turned Queens (NC) into an NCAA Div. II powerhouse.

"I am happy to welcome Sarah to Niner Nation," began Short. "Sarah brings a winning attitude along with a competitive background. Her knowledge of the game and experience with player development will help raise our new program to the top of NCAA Div. I. Sarah will hit the ground running on the recruiting trail and help us bring the top talent to Charlotte."

Stagaard assisted Short in driving the Royals to a 21-1 record last spring becoming the #1 team in the nation winning another South Atlantic Conference regular season and tournament title. Another south region title followed in the NCAA II Women's Lacrosse Championship before ending the year with a 13-12 overtime loss to East Stroudsburg in the national semifinals. Stagaard's first coaching position came at Bloomsburg for the 2021 season after finishing a stellar career at Grand Valley State.

Playing all four years with the Lakers and never missing any of the 57 matches played during that time and having COVID abruptly end her senior season in 2020, the midfielder still found the back of the net 84 times notching 93 points over her career. A total of 95 draw controls, 51 ground balls, 23 caused turnovers and seven game-winning goals rounded out her playing career.

Stagaard reunites with Short to hit the recruiting trail prior to the first season of competition in the spring of 2025. Fans can stay up-to-date with Short, Stagaard and the start-up women's lacrosse program on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram following @CharlotteWLAX on all three platforms.

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Kendall Goldblum

Assistant Women's Lacrosse Coach

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