ITHACA, N.Y. – Shannon McHale, who has served as head coach at St. John Fisher and Potsdam, has been hired as Ithaca's women's lacrosse coach. McHale, who earned her master's degree from Ithaca, replaces Karen Hollands, who spent nine years as head coach at her alma mater.

McHale most recently spent 10 years as the head coach at St. John Fisher. She led the Cardinals to eight consecutive postseason appearances, including a program-best 14 wins in 2007. Compiling a record of 98-70, she guided St. John Fisher to a pair of NCAA appearances, two Empire 8 Championships and two ECAC Upstate N.Y. Championships. McHale served as the Director of the CHAMPS/LIFE SKILLS program and the coordinator of the strength and conditioning intramural program.

"We are very pleased to have Shannon at the helm of our women's lacrosse program,” said Ken Kutler, Ithaca's director of intercollegiate athletics and recreational sports. “She brings a wealth of experience with her to Ithaca and her knowledge of the teams in the Empire 8 will be of great value as we compete for the conference title in 2012."

Named 2007 Empire 8 Coach of the Year, McHale served as the NCAA Division III Women's Lacrosse Championship Tournament site director as St. John Fisher hosted the semifinal round in 2003 and 2004. In 2008 and 2009 she served as the NCAA Division III Women's Lacrosse National Committee Chairman.

A 1992 graduate of Brockport, McHale was inducted into Brockport's Athletic Hall of Fame following her soccer career. She was a first team all-state selection for the Golden Eagles and was selected Brockport Woman of the Year.

In 1994 she was named head women's soccer and women's lacrosse coach at Potsdam, a position she held for five years. She taught classes as an instructor in the Department of Health and Physical Education.

McHale served as graduate assistant coach for the women's lacrosse team and a volunteer assistant women's soccer coach at Ithaca during the 1999-2000 academic year while earning her master's in exercise and sport sciences and sport psychology.

She returned to Potsdam for the 2000-01 seasons before being named women's lacrosse head coach at St. John Fisher.

McHale holds professional certifications from the NCAA Women Coaches Academy, the NCAA Facilitation Workshop and the Athletes Performance Mentorship Program.