We've reached the end of the week and survived all of the storms over the last few days. The 4th of July is on the horizon so those loud banging noises and smells of smoke outside most likely are originating from some folks celebrating early.
I am not Daryl, as she commands her crew at the Louisville Bats this week, but we will explore more of the realm of Louisville Athletics today.
With the fall seasons approaching in a month and a half, I thought a new segment of "Getting to Know the Coaches" for our various women's teams would be fun. While many of the head coaches for our women's teams have been around for some time, the assistant coaches can often feel like a revolving door as many of them continue to work their way up in hopes of becoming head coaches themselves one day. We'll start with field hockey today and work our way to other fall teams in future segments.
Getting to Know the Coaches: Field Hockey
Justine Sowry, Head Coach
One of our more tenured head coaches at Louisville is Justine Sowry. The Australian native has overseen the Field Hockey program for 12 years and is preparing for the big baker's dozen this season. Sowry was officially hired on December 16, 2010 after her predecessor Pam Bustin left for Duke. She was previously an assistant under Bustin at Louisville from 1998-2002.
The Louisville Field Hockey program reached several new heights under Sowry's guidance. The Cards have made eight NCAA Tournament appearances in her 12 years. Only 18 teams make the tournament each year (nine automatic qualifiers and nine at-large bids) so even top 15 teams have been on the outside looking in before.
The Cards won the ACC regular season title in 2021 and the fall portion of the 2020 altered schedule. UofL has produced a whopping 23 NFHCA All-Americans since Sowry took over.
She was "a bit of" a field hockey player herself too, having played for the Australian National Team as their goalkeeper. During her time with the Aussies, Sowry won gold in multiple World Cups and appeared in the 1996 and 2000 Olympic Games.
Malachi Mahan is one of the assistants on the team. He joined the Cards for the 2022 season after spending eight years as an assistant at California.
Mahan spent 10 years as a player with the U.S. Men's National Team Organization. He was a defensive specialist and even served as a team captain in 2005 with the U.S. Pan American Junior Championship team.
Will Holt, Assistant Coach
Another addition prior to the 2022 season is Wilt Holt. Holt spent two seasons with Indiana prior to rejoining Louisville, where he was a volunteer coach from 2012-2015.
Holt has plenty of experience with the U.S. Men's National Team for 15 years and serving as a team captain for four of those years. He's has tallied 85 goals in his international career.
Debbie Bell, Director of Operations
Considered a veteran on the staff, Debbie Bell is still fairly new to the program, having joined as the director of operations in 2018. She was a volunteer coach in 2017 and was an assistant coach at Columbia for two years prior to that.
Bell was a forward for Kent State during her collegiate career. She earned several All-American and NFHCA Region accolades while setting the program record with 97 goals and 215 points.
Louisville opens their season with a scrimmage against Bellarmine on Friday, August 18. Admission is free for all regular season matches at Trager Stadium You can see the full Field Hockey schedule, as well as women's Soccer's and Volleyball's on the right side of the site.
Happy Friday and Go Cards!