July 1, 2020

Bringing Wealth of Pro, College Coaching Experience, Stagnitta Taking Helm of Hun Boys’ Lax Program

TRAINED EYE: Jim Stagnitta eyes the action in his role as the head coach coach of the Whipsnakes of the Premier Lacrosse League. Stagnitta, who boasts 32 years of college and pro coaching experience, is bringing his wealth of knowledge to the high school level, having recently been hired as the head coach of the Hun School boys’ lacrosse program. (Photo provided courtesy of the Hun School)

By Bill Alden

With a resume that includes extensive college and pro lacrosse coaching experience, Jim Stagnitta is now bringing that wealth of knowledge to the local high school scene as he will be taking the helm of the Hun School boys’ lacrosse program.

Over his 32 years in the game, Stagnitta had guided such college programs as Rutgers University, Arcadia University, University of Pennsylvania, and Washington and Lee University. On the pro level, he has been the head coach of the Denver Outlaws and the Charlotte Hounds of Major League Lacrosse as well as the offensive coordinator for the Florida Launch. He is currently the head coach of the Whipsnakes in the Premier Lacrosse League.

In reflecting on his move to Hun, which was announced last week, Stagnitta believes the time is right for him to bring his expertise to that level.

“I’m no stranger to high school lacrosse,” said Stagnitta as quoted in a press release issued by Hun regarding his hiring.

“As a parent, I’ve watched my son play at the high school level. As a coach at Rutgers, I’ve recruited players from high school, Hun included. I’ve learned what it takes to get players to the next level, so coaching high school will allow me to develop these student-athletes and help them build a foundation for a successful future.”

Stagnitta is taking over for Jeff Snow, who guided the team in the abbreviated 2020 season and will stay with the program as an assistant coach.

During Stagnitta’s time coaching college and professional teams, his accomplishments include seven NCAA berths, MLL Coach of the Year in 2013 and 2016, Division 1 Coach of the Year in 2003, Coaches Association Man of the Year in 2005, and five-time Old Dominion Athletic Conference Coach of the Year.

In addition to his success on the field, Stagnitta has made an impact in the areas of team and individual development, having founded and led MVP Development Group and Complete Athlete 360. The MVP Development Group focuses on developing customized approaches to helping professional and collegiate sports teams in the areas of culture, leadership, and communication while Complete Athlete 360 is built on the foundation that leadership, education, wellness, and psychology are key factors in the success of coaches and teams.

“When I first started these corporations, we were working with high schools and student athletes,” asserted Stagnitta.

“We have grown to accommodate teams at higher levels but because I’ve been doing this for so long, I’ve seen firsthand what works and what doesn’t work for athletes. It’s important for student-athletes, especially at the high school level to learn self-worth, resilience, trust, and how to make people around you better. Teaching players those aspects of life is the driving force behind my coaching style.”

As Stagnitta guides the Raiders, he will utilizing a holistic style.

“Success isn’t about winning,” he said. “Success comes from the journey and the growth, so as a coach, I celebrate the journey of each player and each team. Each player learns differently, each player develops differently; it’s my obligation to nurture the different ways each player will grow and celebrate that.”