GREENWOOD – Lander University athletics director Brian Reese has announced the hiring of Anthony LePore as the first head coach of the Bearcats' men's lacrosse program.
LePore comes to Lander from Belmont Abbey, where he served as the associate head coach and offensive coordinator, while also assisting with game and practice planning, player development, academic development and recruiting.
"Anthony is know in this region as a stellar coach and has tremendous vision," Reese said. "His arrival at Lander signals the beginning of something special and provides great excitement for the program. He has a wonderful reputation and is someone who can build this program from the ground up and into a contender."
"I am both honored and deeply grateful for the opportunity to represent Lander University," said LePore. "I would like to thank Dr. Cosentino and Brian Reese for the opportunity to build and lead the new men's lacrosse program at Lander. I would also like to thank my family, Belmont Abbey head coach Chris Barrett and his players for their unwavering support throughout my career. To be the first state university to sponsor NCAA men's lacrosse in the state of South Carolina is a truly special and exciting opportunity. I am eager to begin the recruiting process and bring talented student-athletes onto campus to represent our university with honor and enthusiasm."
In his first season at Belmont Abbey, LePore helped guide the program to its best-ever record at 11-5, while coaching the first USILA All-American in program history. Six Crusaders were named to all-conference, including the Defensive Player of the Year and the Rookie of the Year.
The following year, 2016, Belmont Abbey would go on to establish another school record for wins with a record of 12-4, maintaining a Top 20 ranking in both the USILA Coaches Poll and Nike/Lax Magazine Poll for the entire season. LePore would guide the third-ranked scoring offense in the nation (14.5 goals per game) and the No. 6-ranked man-up offensive unit (converting at a 44% clip). After the season, five players were named to the all-conference team, two were named USILA All-America, and one player was named to the USILA North/South All-Star game. Additionally LePore coached the programs first-ever player drafted into a professional league (Connor Sellars – 1st Round, 10th overall selection by the Georgia Swarm in the 2016 National Lacrosse League Draft).
LePore joined the Crusaders in the fall of 2014 after a successful stint on the staff at Marymount University in Arlington, Va. At Marymount University, LePore coached the face-off unit and was co-offensive coordinator, helping the Saints to their first winning season (9-8) since 2001 and a berth in the ECAC playoffs.
Prior to Marymount, LePore served as head men's lacrosse coach at Northern Virginia Community College for two seasons. At NOVA, he was chartered with transitioning the team from a club to varsity program and member of the NJCAA. He guided NOVA in their final season of club play in 2012 and first season as an NJCAA varsity program in 2013. In doing so, he brought in the program's first recruiting class, claimed its first NJCAA victories, and coached the program's first All-Region XX players.
Before NOVA, LePore spent 10 seasons at Stonewall Jackson High School in Manassas, Va., serving as a social studies teacher and head boys lacrosse coach. At Stonewall, he guided the Raiders to two district championships, six regional playoff appearances, coached two US Lacrosse Academic All-Americans, 17 All-Region selections, 63 All-District selections, and left as the program's all-time winningest head coach. In his final season at Stonewall, he was recognized by the News & Messenger as the 2011 all-area Coach of the Year after guiding his team to a 12-5 record and capturing the Cedar Run District Tournament Championship.
LePore also served as the associate director of the Commonwealth Lacrosse Camp hosted by Capital Lacrosse and has coached numerous travel and local club teams.
Originally from Rochester, N.Y., LePore played collegiately at The Citadel and earned his undergraduate degree in 1999 before closing out his career at SUNY Geneseo while earning a graduate degree in secondary education in 2001.
LePore lives with his wife, Danielle, and daughter, Leah.