Bill Tierney

Men's Lacrosse

US Lacrosse Field to be Named After Bill Tierney

June 1, 2015

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BALTIMORE (US Lacrosse) -- The playing field at the new US Lacrosse national headquarters in Sparks, Md., will be officially known as William G. Tierney Field.

The field will serve as the training center for the U.S. National Teams Program, be utilized for coaches and officials training, and host exhibition games for colleges, high schools and youth teams. It will be named in honor of the legendary lacrosse coach who led the University of Denver to the NCAA Division I championship on May 25 in Philadelphia. The national title was the seventh in Tierney's storied coaching career, after he previously won six titles as the head coach at Princeton University.

After the championship game victory, Tierney said, "When I go to my grave, I don't want them putting on my headstone how many national championships I had. I want them to put on my headstone that my players loved me."

That love is evident as Ed Calkins, chair of the US Lacrosse Foundation Board and one of the four chairs of The National Campaign for Lacrosse, led the effort to name the field in honor of Coach Tierney.

"I had the great fortune to play for Coach Tierney and to win a national championship under his leadership at Princeton in 1992," said Calkins. "He has impacted my life and those of so many others, so positively and in immeasurable ways. I am grateful for the generosity of so many who are making this happen, and we all consider ourselves privileged to have the opportunity to recognize and celebrate his unparalleled success and contributions to the sport of lacrosse with the naming of the field at the new US Lacrosse national headquarters."

"Throughout my career, I have so often been amazed by the effort, sacrifice, and ability to overachieve by my players, most recently at Princeton and Denver," said Tierney. "This honor however, is above-and-beyond and can only be described as overwhelming and humbling. In my thirty-four years of coaching college lacrosse, Ed Calkins ranks at the very top of the type of young men with whom I have been blessed. He has led this charge and so many others have jumped on board.  Yes, the field will bear my name, but the truth of the matter is that twenty-two years at Princeton has afforded me the opportunity to meet so many supportive alums, friends and family members who have reached out to make this vision become a reality. From my standpoint, the field will be dedicated to the men who have coached by my side, players who suited up and blessed me with their dedication on my high school teams, RIT, Hopkins, and of course Princeton and Denver. No words can suitably thank enough, all who participated in this effort."

"We're delighted to honor Coach Tierney with the naming of this field at our new national headquarters," said Steve Stenersen, president and CEO of US Lacrosse. "He is an outstanding coach who has provided exemplary service and support to our national teams program. It is a fitting tribute to a Hall of Fame coach who has meant so much to the sport."

In 31 seasons as a collegiate coach at RIT, Princeton and Denver, Tierney has compiled a record of 355-118. He has taken his teams to the NCAA tournament 26 times, reaching the final four once at RIT, 10 times at Princeton and four times at Denver. He led the United States national team to the world championship in 1998 and was inducted into the National Lacrosse Hall of Fame in 2002 as a "truly great coach." He was named as Lacrosse Magazine's Person of the Year in 2009 after his bold move to Denver to take on the challenge of moving that program to the next level.

Founded in 1998 as a result of the merger of nine national lacrosse associations, US Lacrosse now serves 450,000 members in 67 regional chapters around the country. A primary focus for the organization is education programs for coaches and officials. US Lacrosse trains more than 15,000 coaches and officials each year through online courses, in-person instructional clinics and supplemental resources.

The US Lacrosse $15 million capital campaign is designed to meet the needs of the growing organization. The campaign includes the IWLCA Building at US Lacrosse Headquarters that will house more than 80 US Lacrosse staff members, a 500-seat stadium and "Tierney Field." A formal groundbreaking ceremony for the building took place this spring and occupancy is expected by mid-2016. Campaign resources will also fund player safety research and increase playing opportunities for underprivileged youth through the US Lacrosse First Stick Program.

While the new USL headquarters will be located near Baltimore, US Lacrosse has a broad national reach as evidenced by these examples of impact from 2014:

  • Awarded 94 First Stick grants to programs from 33 states
  • Conducted 102 coaches instructional clinics in 33 states
  • Introduced the sport via soft stick grants to 126 schools/organizations in 32 states
  • Provided 34 PCA sportsmanship grants to programs from 12 states
  • Awarded 24 diversity and inclusion grants to programs from 14 states
  • Hosted events with 464 teams from 34 states competing
  • Awarded 33 grants to local US Lacrosse chapters to help supplement grassroots efforts
  • Worked with more than a dozen leagues in the pilot process for the Gold Stick program, designed to bring national standards and best practices to local youth leagues
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