Mercer welcomes women’s lacrosse, hires new coach

In front of a crowded room, Mercer University Athletic Director Jim Cole announced the inception of Mercer’s Women’s Lacrosse program under the direction of newly hired Head Coach Eve Levinson on Oct. 30.
The women’s lacrosse program will play its first season in the spring of 2015. Until then, Levinson will be responsible for recruiting. The recruiting process has already begun, as Levinson plans to have the first members of the women’s lacrosse program on campus next year to begin training.
“The opportunity to start a team from the ground floor, in a region where the sport that I really love is gathering momentum is a true gift,” said Levinson.
“We will be taking the next two seasons to build a base and prepare for competition,” Levinson said.  “This gives me the chance to really get out into the lacrosse world to find the right young women who will put us on the path toward a championship program and add to the complete picture of Mercer University, as well.” 
After she gains her second recruiting class, the team will compete in the Atlantic Sun Conference for an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.
“This is a fantastic, and unique, opportunity for all of us to make our own mark in lacrosse,” Levinson said.
Levinson brings eight years of coaching experience to Mercer after serving in various positions at the high school, club and collegiate levels. 
Most recently, Levinson served as head coach at Penn. State Abington, a Division III member of the North Eastern Athletic Conference.
Being a former collegiate player herself, Levinson brings a wealth of knowledge to the inaugural women’s lacrosse program. Levinson spent two seasons at the starting goalie for the Germantown Academy (Fort Washington, Penn.), where she earned Defensive MVP honors and Academic All-American status in her senior year.  After graduation, she joined the University of Pennsylvania women’s lacrosse team where she was a goalie and team manager.
Before taking on head coaching responsibilities at Penn State Abington, Levinson was an assistant coach and eventually interim head coach at Bryn Mawr College in Bryn Mawr, Pa.  In that capacity, she provided direct position coaching to goalies, including the 2010 Most Improved Player, and prepared field players to execute plays while developing tactical knowledge.  Her efforts at Bryn Mawr also extended beyond the field, as she played a key role in player recruitment.
While at Bryn Mawr, Levinson also spent time as Head Girl’s Lacrosse Coach of the Philadelphia Delegation at the JCC Maccabi Games, an Olympic style event held annually for Jewish teens between the ages of 13 and 16.  Her involvement included promoting the tournament to local lacrosse coaches, holding tryouts and planning practices.  At the JCC Maccabi games, her squads captured the bronze medal in 2010 and the silver medal in 2011.
Levinson looks forward to her opportunity to head the university’s Division I women’s lacrosse program, and strives to find athletes that will be successful on and off of the field. Levinson promises success with her at the helm of the program.
“Mercer is a top academic and athletic institution in the Southern region, and has made a clear commitment to furthering its strength in both of these areas,” Levinson said. 
“As seen in the beautiful new complex that is the home for lacrosse and football and the demonstrated passion for all of the athletic programs from Director of Athletics Jim Cole all the way through the student population, this is a wonderful place to grow a women’s lacrosse team.  It will be a joy to work and play in facilities that are constant reminders of how much your own efforts mean to the entirety of the community.  We are fortunate to have many pieces in place to push for success, and I have plenty of excitement and desire to get us on a winning track soon.”