Two former Washington and Lee lacrosse coaches met up in the Major Lacrosse League semifinals last weekend, when the Charlotte Hounds, coached by Mike Cerino, upset the Denver Outlaws, coached by Jim Stagnitta, 17-14, in Philadelphia.
The Hounds, playing their second year in MLL, fell to the defending champion Chesapeake Bayhawks on Sunday, 10-9, in the championship match.
The semifinal loss ended what had been a perfect season for Stagnitta's Outlaws, earning him the 2013 Brine MLL Coach of the Year award. The Outlaws had beaten the Hounds 17-11 in the regular season.
Stagnitta led the Generals for 12 seasons from 1990-2001 and was followed by Cerino, who had five seasons at W&L. Both of the former Generals’ coaches are in their second years coaching their respective teams.
Stagnitta has compiled a 25-3 record, which is best in the league during that period. Cerino is the only coach that the Hounds have had, and his teams have been 12-16 overall but improved to 7-7 and came within a goal of the championship this year.
Stagnitta went to Denver after spending 10 years as coach at Rutgers, where he led the Scarlett Knights to seven NCAA Tournament berths and two Final Four appearances. In addition to his duties with the Hounds, Cerino continues as the vice president for intercollegiate athletics at Limestone College in Gaffney, S.C., where he coached the lacrosse team to a Division II national title in 2000 prior to coming to W&L.