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Andy Copelan steps down as Fairfield’s men’s lacrosse head coach

Copelan led the Stags to back-to-back CAA regular season titles in 2015 and 2016.

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Andy Copelan has stepped down as the men’s lacrosse coach of the Fairfield Stags in a press release sent out by the school earlier this morning. Copelan has accepted a position as the Major Gifts Officer for Athletics Advancement and Head Coach of the Boys Lacrosse program at Greenwich Country Day School in Connecticut.

Copelan went 87-78 in his 11 years at Fairfield, including back-to-back CAA regular season championships in 2015 and 2016 and their only appearance in the CAA title game in 2016. His .527 win percentage is the best in program history.

Copelan took over the position from Ted Spencer prior to the 2009 season, when Fairfield was still a member of the ECAC. He helped lead the Stags to six straight conference tournaments with four appearances in conference championship games beginning in 2011. He never had a losing season until 2017 when Fairfield went 5-9. The program has since had below-.500 campaigns in their last two campaigns and failed to win a CAA conference game this season.

Prior to Fairfield, Copelan was an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator with the Maryland Terrapins for three seasons. In his final two seasons in College Park, Copelan’s recruiting classes were ranked in the top three by Inside Lacrosse. Copelan was also the head coach with the Marist Red Foxes for two seasons beginning in 2004, when he was the youngest head coach in the country at the time. Copelan played his college lacrosse at Bucknell and graduated in 2003.

In addition Fairfield will be letting go of assistant coach Colin Hulme, sources tell College Crosse. In other assistant coaching news, Gary DiClementi is out as the associate head coach of the Wagner Seahawks. He played a big role in organizing fall activities when Matt Poskay left in the middle of the fall season.

With the departure of Copelan, Fairfield joins Harvard and Navy in schools with head coach openings. Holy Cross and Quinnipiac’s head coaches are on an interim basis.

PRESS RELEASE:

FAIRFIELD, Conn. – Andy Copelan has stepped down as the head coach of Fairfield University Men’s Lacrosse, as announced today by Director of Athletics Paul Schlickmann. The 11-year head coach of the Stags has accepted a position as the Major Gifts Officer for Athletics Advancement and Head Coach of the Boys Lacrosse program at Greenwich Country Day School.

“I would like to thank Coach Copelan for his dedication to Fairfield University and his commitment to Stags Men’s Lacrosse for the past 11 years,” said Schlickmann. “He has been integral to the development of our program infrastructure and engineered our successful transition to the Colonial Athletic Association (CAA).

Coach Copelan always placed a premium on being a positive mentor and role model to the young men in his program to ensure their growth on and off the field. We wish him and his family great success in this exciting new chapter of their journey.” Copelan went 87-78 in his 11 years leading the Stags, guiding Fairfield to a USILA national ranking in seven campaigns. He was chosen by his peers as the 2015 CAA Coach of the Year after piloting the program to the first of back-to-back CAA Regular Season Championships, culminating with Fairfield’s first-ever appearance in the CAA Championship Game in 2016. Copelan exits Fairfield as the program’s all-time leader with a .527 win percentage.

“I love Fairfield University, the young men in our locker room, and the many wonderful people I have met throughout the University community,” said Copelan. “It has been a privilege to serve as the men’s lacrosse coach for the past eleven years and I would like to thank both the current and former administrations for extending me that opportunity. At the end of the day, this is a family decision and we are excited for the next chapter. I wish the Fairfield Lacrosse program the best of luck, and I will be rooting for the guys to have lifelong success and happiness.”

A national search for the fourth head coach in Fairfield Men’s Lacrosse varsity history will begin immediately. The Stags will be assisted in the process by Ventura Partners, Inc. led by Katy Young Staudt.