Cal Names Jennifer Wong New Lacrosse Head Coach
BERKELEY – California Director of Athletics Jim Knowlton announced Tuesday that Jennifer Wong has been hired as the Golden Bears' lacrosse head coach.
Wong takes the reins at Cal after a long and successful coaching tenure on the staff at Temple, where she most recently served for seven seasons as the Owls' associate head coach from 2016-22. Wong spent 14 campaigns overall at Temple during two stints from 2008-09 and 2011-22.
"I am honored and grateful to be the next head coach of Cal Lacrosse," Wong said. "I would like to thank Director of Athletics Jim Knowlton, Senior Associate Athletics Director Tom Lowry and the search committee for this tremendous opportunity. I look forward to joining the Cal Lacrosse family and working with the student-athletes and alumnae of this world-class institution. The Cal Athletics department is committed to the lacrosse program and constructing a strong foundation for a bright future, and I am excited to build upon what Brooke Eubanks and her staff have established."
Wong started her time at Temple by spending two seasons as a graduate assistant in 2008-09 and was also the head coach at Immaculata University in 2010 before returning to Temple. She spent five campaigns (2011-15) as an Owls assistant coach before being promoted to associate head coach.
"We are pleased to have Jennifer Wong join the Cal family," Knowlton said. "Jennifer is an accomplished and well-respected lacrosse coach with a long history at a strong program, as well as an enthusiastic member of the sport's national coaching communities. We are excited about all the qualities she brings to Cal and are looking forward to having her hit the ground running."
Wong's tenure with the Owls had plenty of highlights, including a national ranking as high as No. 18 in 2022 as well as seven winning seasons over her last eight campaigns and 10 overall. In 2021, Temple finished 13-6 and advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament with an opening-round win over UMass.
Temple won the 2008 Atlantic 10 regular-season title and reached the NCAA Tournament while the 2016 and 2017 teams had back-to-back 13-win campaigns. The Temple coaching staff was honored as the Big East's co-Coaching Staff of the Year in 2016 when the Owls reached the finals of the BIG EAST Tournament.
Wong coached 55 all-conference and 13 all-region players at Temple, including a pair of All-Americans in Whitney Richards (2008) and Courtney Taylor (2021).
Temple was also strong in the classroom throughout Wong's tenure. In each of her 14 seasons on the Temple coaching staff, the Owls were recognized as an IWLCA Academic Honor Squad by the Intercollegiate Women's Lacrosse Association. In the fall of 2015, the lacrosse team's 3.58 grade-point average was the highest of all 19 Temple program and at the conclusion of the 2015-16 school year had a cumulative GPA of 3.51 that was also best at the school. Among BIG EAST lacrosse teams, Temple was recognized during both the 2014-15 and 2015-16 academic years for having the league's highest GPA, and at Temple's annual Celebration of Champions to conclude the 2014-15 school year, the lacrosse team earned The Owl Trophy for having the highest GPA. The number of Owls to earn BIG EAST Academic Team honors was impressive each year with a record 30 achieving that status in 2015-16.
During her entire stay with the Owls, Wong worked with Temple head coach Bonnie Rosen, who is a U.S. Lacrosse, Philadelphia Sports, Eastern Pennsylvania, and Connecticut Lacrosse Hall of Famer. At the end of 2022, Rosen was the 19th winningest coach in NCAA Division I women's lacrosse history.
"With much appreciation, I would like to recognize Temple head coach Bonnie Rosen for her mentorship, wisdom and guidance," Wong said. "I will be forever grateful for the 14 years working with her and the wonderful people at Temple."
Prior to Temple, Wong served for two seasons as an assistant coach at Rutgers in 2006 and 2007 with the latter team reaching as high as No. 14 in the IWLCA national rankings.
Throughout her coaching career, Wong has been active in the advancement of minority women's coaches and in 2022 was honored with the Black Women in Sport Foundation's Community Builder Award. She has also served in multiple positions with the IWLCA since 2005, including her most recent duties over the last four seasons on the All-American committee, as a speaker and mentor for IWLCA mentorship programs - including the IWLCA's Students of Color Leadership Academy and Future Leaders of the Game. She was also an IWLA Coaching Symposium panelist in 2022.
A native of Greenwood Village, Colo., Wong played collegiately as a goalkeeper at Connecticut (2001-05) and helped lead the 2005 squad to an ECAC championship and No. 15 national ranking. Wong received a bachelor's degree in business administration from UConn in 2005 before adding a master's of education in Sport and Recreation Administration from Temple in 2009. She is currently working on a doctorate in Higher Education at Temple.
Wong is the fifth head coach in Cal lacrosse history following Jill Malko (1999-2007), Theresa Sherry (2008-11), Ginger Miles (2012-14) and Brooke Eubanks (2015-22).