St. John Fisher College's all-time wins leader in women's lacrosse, Linda Michele was hired to guide the women's lacrosse program in the summer of 2011.
In each of her eight seasons at the helm, Michele has led the Cardinals to eight consecutive Empire 8 Conference championships and eight appearances in the NCAA Division III Women's Lacrosse Championship. The 2019 campaign marked the best season in program history after Fisher went 19-2 overall - the most wins Fisher has ever recorded in a single season. After winning its eighth straight Empire 8 title in convincing fashion, Fisher, which finished the season ranked 12th in the final IWLCA Coaches Poll, marched through the second round of the NCAA Championship with a win over Brockport and advanced to the Sweet 16 where it took on York College (Pa.). Under Michele's direction, Fisher led the Empire 8 in nearly every statistical category and had two players honored as the Defensive Player and Rookie of the Year.
In 2018 and 2016, Michele steered the team to 17 wins, which at the time was two more than any previous year in program history.
Michele notched her 100th career win at Fisher on March 6th, 2017 and enters the 2019 campaign with a 108 wins including 44 victories against Empire 8 competition and owns a career mark of 131-43 (.753). Under her guidance, the Cardinals have posted 15 wins or more in a season six times overall.
With Michele on the sidelines, Fisher is at its best in the postseason as the Cardinals have gone 16-0 in the Empire 8 Championship and have reached the second round or better in the NCAA Championship five times overall including a run to the Sweet 16 in 2019 and 2016.
Over the last eight years, Michele has coached some of the top players to ever don the Cardinal and Gold with 50 student-athletes being named All-Conference by the Empire 8 under her watch. Additionally, Michele has mentored three All-Americans and numerous All-Region selections.
Previously, Michele had coached at The College of Brockport, a program that she transformed into a national power in just two years.
In her first season, Michele guided the Golden Eagles to the program's first NCAA appearance, ultimately ending in the quarterfinal round. Brockport, which won just five games in 2009, went 13-4 in 2010 and advanced to the NCAA Division III Championship for the first time in the program's history with Michele being named the 2010 NCAA Division III Coach of the Year.
In 2011, Brockport received an at-large bid to NCAAs after finishing in 2nd place in the SUNYAC.
Michele's scholastic coaching resume is even more impressive. Prior to Brockport, Michele served as the head coach at East Rochester High School where she compiled a career record of 160-40. Over 13 seasons, she guided the team to four Section V Championships and three New York State Final appearances. The East Rochester native also coached at the Albany Girls Academy from 1990 to 1996, where she finished with a 78-14 record.
In 2001, she formed the Lady Roc Lacrosse Club, a premier travel lacrosse team for girls in the Rochester and Buffalo region. Michele has also served as the USWLA and US Lacrosse National Tournament Director, US Lacrosse coach and Empire State Games Western Region coach.
She was inducted into the Rochester Chapter of US Lacrosse Hall of Fame in 2008.
In addition to her extensive lacrosse resume, Michele coached field hockey at East Rochester from 1999-2008 where she compiled a record of 185-28-12 and led the Bombers to three Class C Sectional Championships.
She received her Bachelor of Science in Physical Education from SUNY Cortland in 1982 and a Master of Science in Health Education from Russell Sage College in 1992.
Michele is the fourth women's lacrosse coach since the program's inception in 2000.
She currently resides in East Rochester with her husband Mark. They have four children, Whitney, Sean, Jordan and Casey.