Loretto, PA -- Saint Francis University Director of Athletics Bob Krimmel has announced the resignation of head women’s basketball coach Susan Robinson Fruchtl. Robinson Fruchtl, who recently wrapped up her fifth season in Loretto, will take the reins of the program at Providence College.
“The Red Flash Family wishes Susan and Tony the very best as they meet the new challenges and opportunities that await them at Providence,” said Krimmel. “Susan has been an outstanding coach for us but more importantly, a great member of the Saint Francis Community. We thank Susan for her work in restoring the women's basketball program and placing us in a position to be successful as we move forward under new leadership.”
As the Red Flash revs up a national search for a new head coach, fourth-year assistant Joe Haigh will oversee the program’s day-to-day operations.
“I’d like to thank (President) Father Gabe (Zeis), Bob (Krimmel) and (Vice President) Frank Montecalvo for five great years here,” said Robinson Fruchtl. “We definitely got this program back on track and built something everyone can be proud of.”
Robinson Fruchtl engineered a remarkable revival at SFU after inheriting at team that had compiled a record of 11-46 over the two years prior to her arrival. After guiding Saint Francis to its first Northeast Conference Championship game appearance in three seasons in 2008-09, her squad completed it ascent to the top of league in 2009-10, claiming its 10th NEC Tournament Championship and NCAA Tournament berth.
In 2010-11, SFU rolled to a 22-12 record and a 14-4 mark in league play en route to a league-record 11th NEC tournament championship. The result was a 13 seed in the NCAA Tournament – tying for the highest in program and conference history – and an NEC Coach of the Year designation for Robinson Fruchtl.
She leaves with a 74-83 record on the Red Flash bench.
“I’d like to thank all of assistants who have been here over the past five seasons – I really appreciate their effort and it paid off,” said Robinson Fruchtl. “I’d also like to thank the support staff, the administration and especially the players. They gave everything they had and it’s been a joy to have coached at Saint Francis.”
“While I’ll miss everyone here, I’m looking forward to this new opportunity.”
With SFU’s success over the past four seasons – which includes three appearances in the NEC Championship game and two trips to the NCAA Tournament, in addition to a recently-completed office complex and a new women's basketball locker room – the next coach of the Red Flash will take over a program brimming with potential.
On the court, Saint Francis will return a talented and deep team for the 2012-13 season which includes 2011 NEC Tournament MVP Brittany Lilley and 2012 All-NEC selection Alli Williams.
“I am certain we will find a coach who will bring a commitment to education, a passion for the game, a belief that we can still be better, and the strong faith that is essential at Saint Francis,” said Krimmel.