TEACH AND TRANSFORM

Developing lacrosse athletes and promoting growth

 

Dodger's coaches are educators who love the game and have a combined 100+ years of playing and coaching experience. 

 

LEADERSHIP

Diane "Dee" Stephan

Danie Caro

Shannon McHale

Staff

Kate Pistel

Brittany "Britt" Giacco

Alexis "Lexi" Stephan

Colleen Olsen

staff

Melanie "Mel" Welcome

Ashleigh "Ash" Stephan

Sydney Satchell

Sandra Stephan

College Assistants

Kathi Ricci

Emily Wright

Samantha "Sam" McCarthy

Linna Jalinskas

 


DIANE "DEE" STEPHAN

FOUNDER, HEAD COACH

Diane “Dee” Stephan has worked in athletics all her adult life. She is the current owner of Dodgers, which she co-founded in 2000.

Previously, Dee held Athletic Director and Head Coach positions at both Canton High/Middle School and The Ethel Walker School, successfully leading Canton’s Girls Lacrosse team to their first State Tournament and leading Ethel Walker girls to two Class C titles and five consecutive league titles.

As founding member and coach of the Avon Youth Lacrosse program for over twenty years, Dee continues to volunteer and serve on their board. Additional coaching experience includes The University of Saint Joseph, Assistant Field Hockey Coach at Syracuse University, a youth league coach since 1993 and coach at the US Lacrosse National Tournament for the past six years. Beyond lacrosse, she has coached basketball and field hockey.

Dee's experience has led her to present at the U.S. Lacrosse National Convention since 2013 and at the CT Lacrosse Convention. She is a member of the Connecticut Chapter of the U.S. Lacrosse Hall of Fame,  Former U.S. Lacrosse Board of Governers, Lacrosse Sport Science Committee, Women’s Game Committee, former member of the U.S. Lacrosse Rules Committee.

Numerous All-Conference players, two All-American and seven Academic All-Americans have been coached by Dee. She has successfully assisted in the placement of several Division I and III athletes who have excelled both academically and athletically. As a college athlete herself, Dee played field hockey at the University of Connecticut and Southern Ct State University.

Dee holds a Bachelors Degree from Southern CT State University majoring in Health and Physical Education with a concentration in Nutrition and a MEd from Syracuse University Health and Physical Education also with a concentration in Nutrition. Dee has taught Physical Education and Health to elementary through High School students.

Currently, Dee resides in Avon, CT with her husband of 26 years, Chris, and their four children, all of whom enjoy the game of Lacrosse.


DANIE CARO

DIRECTOR OF OPERATIONS, HEAD Coach & GoalKeeper Specialist

Danie Caro coached collegiately for over 20 years and ended her career as the head coach at Quinnipiac University in 2015. Caro’s head coaching stops included launching the programs at Stony Brook University, St. Bonaventure University, and Manhattan College. She also spent time as an assistant coach at Frostburg State University and Colgate University.

Caro graduated from Colgate University and holds master’s degrees from both Frostburg State and Quinnipiac. She has been a very active volunteer in the sport, serving on the US Lacrosse Board of Directors, the IWLCA Board of Directors, the NCAA Northeast Regional Advisory Committee, and as chair of the NCAA Women’s Lacrosse Rules Committee.


SHANNON McHALE

HEAD COACH, FLORIDA

Shannon McHale has over 20 years experience coaching at NCAA DIII level. McHale left Ithaca College after the 2015 season to relocate Florida. In her four year stint at Ithaca, her teams were consistently ranked in the NCAA DIII top 20 and were undefeated, regular season conference champions in 2012, 2013 and 2014. She was named conference Coach of the Year in 2012 and 2013.

Prior to Ithaca College, McHale coached at St. John Fisher College where her team went from the newest and last place team in the conference when she took over, to conference champions in 2007 when she was also named conference Coach of the Year. Fisher competed in the NCAA first round in 2007 and advanced to the NCAA Quarterfinals in 2009.

McHale began her coaching career at SUNY Potsdam where she led both the women's lacrosse and soccer programs for 6 years. She graduated from SUNY Brockport with a degree in Physical Education and holds a masters degree in Sport Psychology from Ithaca College. She is also is certified in Strength and Conditioning. McHale has been active on the NCAA level as the National Chair of DIII Women's Lacrosse as well as member of the NCAA New York Regional Committee for several years. 


Follow your heart and apply to whatever school you love. You are the person attending, not your mom, dad, friend or coach - so make sure it’s the perfect place for YOU!
— Kate Pistel

KATE PISTEL

HEAD COACH, NORTHEAST region


College

Colby College '13

SPORTS PLAYED

Soccer, Squash and Lacrosse (Midfield)

MEMORABLE Athlete MOMENT

Being a part of such an amazing group of players and coaches that I'll be friends with for the rest of my life.

DODGERS DIFFERENCE MEANS

Really getting to know our kids as players and coaching them accordingly. However, we also get to know them as people. There is a great balance between hard work, skill and fun!

COACHING BEYOND DODGERS

Taft School: Head Coach Girls Lacrosse and Boys Squash, Assistant Coach Girls Soccer and Admissions

REWARDING Coaching Experience

When a player perfectly executes a concept you've been working on with them for weeks.

Ideal LAX Weather

Sunny, 80

FAVORITE SPORTs OUTSIDE LAX

Play: Squash and Soccer / Watch: Yankees!


Teaching skills necessary to compete at the next level while focusing on overall growth for the athlete.
— Britt Giacco

BRITTANY "BRITT" GIACCO

Head COACH, goalKeeper Specialist


Coaching beyond DODGERS

St. Margaret's, Head Coach

Rewarding coaching experience

Starting a new high school lacrosse program and winning our very first game.

Ideal lax weather

Rain

Favorite Sports Outside LAX

Play: Hockey / Watch: Hockey

 

COLLEGE

University of North Carolina '12

Sports Played

Lacrosse (Goalkeeper)

Memorable Athlete moment

Playing in the NCAA Final Four!

DODGERS DIFFERENCE Means

Teaching skills necessary to compete at the next level while focusing on overall growth for the athlete.


When you decide someone else has more talent than you, you limit yourself. Respect and believe in your talent. Work hard to develop it, and you’ll be amazed at how good you can get!
— Lexi Stephan

ALEXIS "LEXI" STEPHAN

Head COACH, northeast region 


Coaching Beyond Dodgers

Ethel Walker High School, Head Coach

rewarding coaching experience

When the lightbulb goes off for the player and she just gets it!

IDEAL LAX WEATHER

Sunny, 75

FAVORITE SPORTs OUTSIDE OF LAX

Play: Riding Horses / Watch: Ice Hockey

PETS

Dog named Denver, a German Shepherd/Coonhound rescue! 

 

COLLEGE

Gettysburg College '14

SPORTS PLAYED

Lacrosse (Attack), Field Hockey (Forward) 

memorable athelte moment

Beating Hopkins on our home field!

the DODGERS DIFFERENCE MEANS

Taking time to know each player in order to personalize the way we coach them, motivate them and help them reach their potential on and off the field.


What you put into your passion is what you’ll get out. If you’re passionate about lacrosse and want to be the best player you can be, you’ve got to be fired up to put in the work it will take off the field to get there, whether that’s on the wall with stickwork, doing extra footwork drills on the ladder, or running some extra 100’s after practice.”
— Colleen Olsen

COLLEEN OLSEN

HEAD COACH, northeast region


COLLEGE

Dartmouth College '10

SPORTS PLAYED

Lacrosse 

MEMORABLE athlete MOMENT 

Beating Princeton when they were ranked #2 in the country. We were down to only about 15 healthy players and it was 90 degrees on their home turf!

THE DODGERS DIFFERENCE MEANS

Dodgers represents all that's right with sports. Emphasizing development of the complete athlete - how to be a good teammate and have strong psychological mindsets - ultimately is preparing the girls themselves to be leaders our world needs.

COACHING BEYOND DODGERS

Granby High School, Assistant Coach

Team USA Coach, 2009-2011 

rewarding coaching experience

Watching girls I taught how to throw and catch when they were in elementary go on to become leaders at the high school and college levels, while continuing to love the game and be hungry to improve.

IDEAL LAX WEATHER

Colder than what the other team prefers

FAVORITE SPORTs OUTSIDE OF LAX

Play: Ice Hockey


Enjoy the game!
— Mel Welcome

MELANIE "MEL" WELCOME

HEAD COACH, northeast region


COACHING BEYOND DODGERS

Stevens Institute of Technology, Volunteer Assistant Coach 

rewarding coaching experience

Working on a skill at practice with a player and seeing it attempted elsewhere.

IDEAL LAX WEATHER

Anything

FAVORITE SPORTs OUTSIDE OF LAX

Play: Soccer / Watch: Soccer

COLLEGE

Stevens Institute of Technology '15

SPORTS PLAYED

Lacrosse (Goalkeeper)

MEMORABLE athlete MOMENT 

Playing in the Sweet Sixteen!

THE DODGERS DIFFERENCE MEANS

Catering to the individual's goals, which are unique to each player, while also teaching the importance of team work.


Spend 10 minutes less on social media and 10 minutes more on LAX each day.
— Ash Stephan

ASHLEIGH "ASH" STEPHAN

Head COACH, Northeast region


Coaching Beyond dodgers

Ethel Walker High School, Assistant Coach 

rewarding coaching experience

Once when I was coaching an individual, the player said, "you were right, I shot in the spot you told me to and scored three goals!"

Ideal LAX Weather

Sunny, 65

Favorite Sports Outside of LAX

Play: Squash / Watch: Football

Pets

2 Dogs

 

College

Hamilton College '15

Sports Played

Lacrosse (Midfield)

Memorable athlete Moment 

Watching the selection show with my team my senior season when we landed an at-large bid, and going on to beat the defending national champs in a crazy, triple OT game the first round of NCAAs!

The Dodgers Difference Means

Genuinely caring about our athletes and their families, and focusing on overall player development rather than just recruiting. An emphasis on supporting players in their complete journey to discover the right overall fit for their next level of play.


Embrace feedback! It’s an important part of the journey!
— Sydney Satchell

SYDNEY SATCHELL

Head COACH, Northeast Region


Coaching BEYond Dodgers

Berkshire School, Assistant Coach

Rewarding Coaching Moment

When a player trusted me during a rough time and later shared that my words of encouragement truly helped her. 

Ideal LAX Weather

Spring, 85 with Slight Winds

Favorite Sport Outside LAX

Play: Basketball / Watch: Basketball, Tennis

ATTENDED COLLEGE

Howard University '14

SPORTS PLAYED

Lacrosse (Defense)

MEMORABLE athlete MOMENT

Making songs on the bus for away games!

Dodgers Difference Means

It's a family run business.


Never lose sight of why you love the sport!
— Sandra Stephan

SANDRA STEPHAN

CoAch, Northeast region and Team Media Coordinator


rewarding coaching experience

It goes a long way whenever a player says thanks for what you have taught them.

Ideal LAX Weather

Sunny, Light Breeze

Favorite Sports Outside of LAX

Play: Field Hockey / Watch: Ice Hockey

PETS

2 Dogs 

Attending College

Stetson University  (Sophomore)

Playing

Lacrosse (Midfield)

memorable athlete moment

When I got to carry the Stetson lacrosse flag, and lead the team as we walked out for game time.

The Dodgers Difference Means

Teaching life lessons that build well-rounded people and players.


Never give up on your goals, no matter how frustrating it may be to chase them! Keep working as hard as you can and always do extra on your own time. Step outside of your comfort zone and learn something new.
— Kathi Ricci

KATHI RICCI

COACH, FLORIDA


Attending College

Stetson University (Junior)

Playing

Lacrosse (Defense)

Memorable Athlete moment

When I had to miss a game and my teammates wrote my initials on their hands signifying that they dedicated their performance to me.

Dodgers Difference Means 

Really caring about players as all-around people, not just athletes.

Rewarding Coaching experience

Although I was nervous coaching my first game, a player came up to me to thank me for coaching her. In that moment, I felt like I had made a difference in helping a player grow their game, which is what it's all about!

Ideal LAX Weather

Sunny

Favorite Sports Outside of LAX

Play: Swimming / Watch: Football


When planning for college, make sure you choose a school you love with and without playing LAX there.
— Emily Wright

EMILY WRIGHT

Coach, Northeast Region


current COLLEGE

UMass Lowell, Villanova University (Junior)

Playing

D-I and Club Lacrosse (Midfield)

Memorable athlete experience

***

The DODGERS DIFFERENCE MEANS

We are a family from start to finish. We take time to get to know one another, and we treat each other with the upmost respect.

rewarding coaching experience

***

IDEAL LAX WEATHER

Sunny Skies

FAVORITE SPORTs OUTSIDE OF LAX

Play: Soccer / Watch: Football

PETS

2 Cats


Always put in 110% effort into everything you do, have a good attitude and be coachable!
— Sam McCarthy

SAMANTHA "SAM" McCARTHY

COACH, NORTHEAST REGION


CURRENT COLLEGE

Stonehill College (Junior)

PLAYING

Lacrosse (Defense)

Memorable Athlete Moment

Playing in the NCAA Tournament!

THE DODGERS DIFFERENCE MEANS

Helping each player achieve their personal goals and grow as players.

rewarding coaching experience

Watching each player develop their skills.

IDEAL LAX WEATHER

Summer

FAVORITE SPORTs OUTSIDE OF LAX

Play: Soccer / Watch: Hockey

PETS

Golden Retriever Puppy


When it comes to the recruiting process, my coach always told me that picking a school is like picking a wedding dress. There’s always one the fits better than the rest!
— Linna Jalinskas

LINNA JALINSKAS

COACH, Northeast Region


Current College

Stonehill College (Sophomore)

Playing

Lacrosse (Attack)

memorable athlete moment

The day I received a phone call from my dream school saying they'd love to have me play for them!

The Dodgers Difference Means

Focusing on personalized improvement for all the girls - not just on getting recruited for some.

rewarding coAching experience

Back to when I first started coaching, on the first day, I taught a little girl how to pick up a ground ball. The look on her face when she picked it up on her own and hearing her say, "I did it!!!" will forever be engraved in my mind. 

Ideal LAX Weather

Sunny, 75

Favorite Sports Outside of LAX

Play: Volleyball / Watch: Hockey

PETS

Dog named Marley!

 


ADDITIONAL DODGERS SUPPORT

 

 
 

Performance & injury prevention

Dodgers athletes gain an edge at quicks, a speed and agility sports performance center located in Central Florida. Running mechanics, acceleration, reaction time, coordination and plyometrics are some of the skills Dodgers players work on through quicks. Beyond enhanced performance, injury prevention is also a focus.

 
 

Sports Psychology

Dodgers players are given guidance on how to harness the natural mind-body-spirit connection that occurs during physical activity as a vehicle to perform in flow both on and off the field. To help our athletes perform their best, we provide this mindful support at various camps and clinics.

 
 

Official Outfitter

 

 

 


Connie J. Chapin - Umpire TrainING

With over 29 years of high school and college officiating experience (lacrosse, field hockey, basketball and softball), Connie consistently works the USL National Tournament, D-I, II and III games and conference tournaments.  Achieving a national lacrosse umpire rating in 2008, she has taught umpiring classes for the CWLOA and youth programs since 2004. Also, she has been the lacrosse program coordinator and officials assignor for the CT State Nutmeg Games since 2005. Currently, she serves as a program coordinator for the CT Sports Management Group in East Hartford, CT developing field hockey and lacrosse programs for the CT State Nutmeg Games and Senior Olympics.

Connie is Owner and Director of ExRx, LLC where she specializes as a Clinical Exercise Physiologist with work injury management and prevention, cardiac rehab, orthopedic rehab, aquatic therapy and functional training. She holds her BS and MS degrees in Physical Education and Exercise Physiology from Southern Connecticut State University.