- Erica LaGrow
Erica LaGrow, a former standout for the University of North Carolina, begins her fifth season with the Gators for the 2014 season.
LaGrow has been with Florida since the team’s inception in 2010 and coordinates the Gators offense, developing them into one of the most potent offenses in the country. UF once again proved to be an offensive threat in 2013, finishing the season with the nation’s second best scoring margin (7.95), fifth-best scoring offense (14.76) and sixth in points (430).
Five Gator players scored 50+ points with eight players scoring double-digit goals in 2013. Florida also scored 10 or more goals in 18 of 21 games in 2013. She guided an offensive unit that boasted some of the most prolific scorers in 2013 including IWLCA and SynapseSports.com All-Americans Kitty Cullen, Shannon Gilroy and Brittany Dashiell.
She was also responsible for the direction of Tewaaraton Award finalist goalie Mikey Meagher. Under her direction, Meagher became the first ever female goalie Tewaaraton finalist and swept Goalie of the Year honors from the ALC, IWLCA, SynapseSports.com and WomensLax.com. Meagher boasted the second-best goals-against average (6.90) and fifth-best save percentage (.502) in the nation in 2013 while posting 125 saves.
In her third year with the team in 2012, the Gators led the nation in offense for the majority of the season, finishing the year ranked second in scoring margin (8.77) and third in both scoring offense (15.32) and total points (483).
LaGrow helped coach a balanced offense that featured four players with 60+ points and six attackers with 40+ goals. Under her direction, freshmen Shannon Gilroy and Nora Barry broke onto the scene, ranking among the best in their class in scoring and the midfield ground game, with Barry earning ALC Rookie of the Year and Gilroy taking home two All-America honors. Overall, the Gators garnered 14 All-America honors, including First Team selections for Meagher, Farrell and Dashiell, a Tewaaraton Award and Honda Sports Award finalist.
The 2011 Gators averaged 13.45 goals per game behind IWLCA First Team All-American and ALC Player of the Year, Kitty Cullen. Cullen, with LaGrow’s influence, went from scoring 1.72 goals per game (37 total) in 2010 to 3.85 goals per game (77 total) in 2011.
In 2010, LaGrow was very influential in directing a Gator offense that averaged 12.39 goals per game, ranking fourth in the American Lacrosse Conference and 25th in the nation. She was an important part of the development of national Rookie of the Year Ashley Bruns, who ranked third in the conference and 12th in the nation in total points (79).
Florida scored at least 10 goals in 12 of its 18 games and beat two top-20 opponents by more than 10 goals. Five different players scored over 20 goals, led by Bruns’ 48 as a true freshman. In the ALC Quarterfinals, the Gators upset No. 20 Johns Hopkins after jumping out to a 9-0 lead in the first half on their way to a 14-3 victory. Florida became just the sixth school in Division I women’s lacrosse history to earn 10 or more wins in their inaugural season after posting a 10-8 record.
LaGrow was hired after finishing her playing career at North Carolina where she played midfield from 2005-08. As a Tar Heel, LaGrow racked up 24 goals during her senior season in 2008 and was named second-team All-South Regional for the second time in her career. The four-year starter was named to the first-team All-Atlantic Coast Conference team as a senior and the conference honor roll every year. The midfielder also earned All-ACC Academic honors twice.
She ended her collegiate career with 80 goals and 15 assists for 95 points. She also picked up 90 ground balls and controlled 84 draws. LaGrow helped the Tar Heels to the NCAA Championship Quarterfinals four consecutive years.
LaGrow gained international playing experience with the U.S. Women’s Elite team in 2007 and 2008, and was a member of the touring team, which captured the 2008 Prague Cup. She also boasts five years of experience with the U.S. Women’s National team from 2007-2012.
During the summer of 2009, LaGrow joined the U.S. Women’s Elite team at the Federation of International Lacrosse Women’s World Cup in Prague. She scored four goals in four games during the group stage and helped the team to a perfect 4-0 record heading into the elimination rounds. The U.S. would go on to win the gold medal with an 8-7 victory over Australia. With the victory, LaGrow joined head coach Amanda O’Leary as a World Cup gold-medal winner.
Since 2004, LaGrow has been compiling coaching experience to go along with her outstanding playing abilities. She spent four summers as a volunteer coach at the Star-Riders Lacrosse Club in Central New York, coaching and mentoring high school players. She also prepared and implemented their practice plans. She served as camp director at Treasure Valley Lacrosse Girls’ Camp in Eagle, Idaho, and Ultimate Goal Lacrosse Camp in Marcellus, N.Y.
The Skaneateles, N.Y., native graduated with honors from North Carolina in May 2008 with a bachelor’s degree in exercise and sports science.
The Erica LaGrow File
Hometown: Skaneateles, N.Y. (Christian Brothers Academy)
Education: University of North Carolina (2008, Bachelor’s of Arts degree – exercise and sports science)
United States Women’s National team (2007-2012)
Midfield, University of North Carolina (2005-08)
- First-Team All-Atlantic Coast Conference (2008)
- Second-Team All-South Regional (2007, ’08)
- FIL World Cup Gold Medalist, U.S. Women’s Elite Team (2009)
- Prague Cup Gold Medalist, U.S. Women’s Elite Team (2008)
- University of Florida, assistant coach (2008-present)
- Ultimate Goal Lacrosse Camp (2006-08)
- Treasure Valley Girls’ Lacrosse Camp (2005-08)
- Star-Riders Lacrosse Club (2004-08)