The 2018 Atlantic 10 Coach of the Year, Allison Kwolek has helmed the UR women's lacrosse program since the 2013 season, leading the squad to the 2018 and 2019 Atlantic 10 Tournament Titles and advancing to two-straight NCAA Tournaments.
The Spiders are 47-14 over the last three seasons and have the fifth most wins in the nation over the last two seasons (33). Richmond has finished each of the past two seasons in the top-25 in the country in the RPI, including 20th in 2018.
Under her tutelage, the UR program has qualified for six-straight Atlantic 10 Tournaments, advancing to the championship game each time. Her Spider teams have thrived in postseason play, with an 11-4 record in the A-10 Tournament, having won 9 of their last 11 conference tournament games.
An All-CAA midfielder at William & Mary and defender on the U.S. National Team, she served on the coaching staffs at her alma mater, Columbia and Dartmouth, before taking over as the head coach, as the former Allison Evans, at Richmond in the fall of 2012.
The Spiders' saw great success in 2019, setting a new program record with 17 wins and winning their second-straight Atlantic 10 Championship title with a 19-18 comeback in in overtime over UMass. The team competed in its second-straight NCAA Tournament and fifth all-time to finish the year at 17-4 overall. Five student-athletes earned first or second team All-Conference honors, led by two-time Atlantic 10 Defensive Player of the Year Julie Ball, who became the first student-athlete in A-10 history to earn the honor more than once. The Spiders boasted one All-Rookie Team and three All-Academic Team honorees, while Ball also earned IWLCA Second Team All-Region honors for the second-straight season. The Spiders finished the year in record-breaking fashion, totaling 455 points and 314 goals to shatter the previous single-season marks. Senior Marissa Brown wrapped up her career by breaking her own single-season assist record with 49 while also overcoming the career assist mark with 142. Brown sits in second all-time in the UR record book with 271 career points.
2018 was a historic season for the Spiders, as the team tied a program-best record of 16-4 overall, finished in a tie for first in the Atlantic 10 Regular Season, and took the 2018 A-10 Tournament Title with a 12-11 overtime win over UMass. The squad advanced to the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2007, while eight student-athletes earned All-Conference honors, including A-10 Offensive Player of the Year Kim Egizi and A-10 Defensive Player of the Year Julie Ball. Kwolek was named the A-10 Co-Coach of the Year, the first to do so since 2006. Egizi and Ball also earned IWLCA Second Team All-Region honors for their efforts. The Spiders broke multiple single-season records on the year, including single-season goals (288), while Egizi broke the single-season point mark, Katie Sciandra broke the single-season goal mark, and Caroline Queally broke the single-season draw control mark for the third time in her career.
Kwolek led the 2017 squad to a 14-6 overall record and a runner-up finish at the Atlantic 10 Championship. The 14 wins tied for second-most in program history and most since 2007. Nine student-athletes earned All-Conference honors on the year, including A-10 Rookie of the Year Sam Geiersbach, and First Team honorees Kim Egizi and goalie Megan Gianforte. The team shattered multiple single-season records, including points (427), goals (281) and draw controls (298). Geiersbach wrapped up a stellar season by breaking the single-season records for points and goals, while Marissa Brown did so for assists and Caroline Queally broke her own record for draw controls.
Richmond finished the 2016 season with an impressive run in the Atlantic 10 Tournament, finishing second after qualifying sixth. The team finished the season with a 9-10 record, while five different Spiders were tabbed to All-Conference squads.
The Spiders won 10 games again in 2015, capturing six home wins and winning six A-10 games, as well as boasting the A-10 Rookie of the Year in Kim Egizi. For the second year in a row, the team was just one of two in the league to post a sub-10 goals-against average.
Richmond finished with 11 wins in 2014, the most victories for the Spiders since their last Atlantic 10 Championship season in 2007. The Spiders finished 7-2 at home and allowed just 7.83 goals per game for the 2014 season, a new record low total. Taylor Blazer was awarded the league's Defensive Player of the Year, and was one of four Spiders to earn All-Conference honors in 2014.
In her first season at Richmond, the Spiders tied for third place in the Atlantic 10. Five Spiders earned All-Conference recognition and standout senior Caitlin Fifield was named to the prestigious Tewaaraton Watch List.
In Feburary, 2015, the former U.S. National Team standout defender was inducted into the Lacrosse Hall of Fame, Potomac Chapter.
In 2016, she was named an assistant coach for the Boston Storm during the inaugural season of the United Women's Lacrosse League, the world's first professional lacrosse league for female athletes. Kwolek spent the summer with the Storm, which went 6-4 in its inaugural campaign and reached the league final. She coached eight All-Stars during the season, including two of the team's attackers.
Kwolek, an Annandale, Virginia native, returned to her home state after spending two years as an assistant at Dartmouth College. While in New Hampshire, she helped guide the Big Green to back-to-back NCAA appearances in 2011 and 2012. The back-to-back trips to the NCAA Tournament were the first for Dartmouth since 2005 and 2006. She also helped guide Dartmouth to the school's first-ever Ivy League Tournament title in 2012.
Kwolek coached 12 All-Ivy honorees in her two seasons at Dartmouth, including two Player of the Years (2011, 2012) and one Rookie of the Year. Additionally, she cultivated 10 IWLCA All-Region honorees and four All-Americans.
In 2012, she helped lead the Big Green to five wins over top-20 opponents. Defense was an integral part of her coaching focus as Dartmouth was ranked 16th in the country, 1st in the Ivy League in that area.
Prior to Dartmouth, she was the top assistant coach at Columbia while earning her master's degree in sports management. She was primarily responsible for the defense and midfield players, mentoring two All-Ivy honorees.
Before Columbia, Kwolek spent two seasons as an assistant coach at her alma mater, William & Mary. While there, the Tribe won the 2009 CAA regular season title, achieved a top-20 ranking and set single-season records for goals and points.
She was a standout midfielder for the Tribe, earning All-CAA honors twice in her career (2002, 2003). She was elected captain as a senior, and finished her stellar collegiate career with 116 points. In 2006, Evans was named to the prestigious US National Elite Team and also served as a coach's trainer for the US Lacrosse organization.
Kwolek earned her master's degree in sports management from Columbia in 2012 and graduated with a bachelor's degree in psychology from William & Mary in 2003.
She married her husband Mark in Williamsburg in December 2014, and welcomed her daughter, Olivia, in October 2017. They reside in Richmond.