Head coach Michele Madison, a member of the National Field Hockey Coaches Association Hall of Fame and a former assistant US National Team and Olympic coach, has spent nine seasons at the helm of the Cavalier field hockey program, leading UVa to seven NCAA Tournament berths, including national semifinals appearances in 2009 and 2010.
In November of 2013, Madison was inducted into the NFHCA Hall of Fame, the first Virginia coach to receive this honor.
Madison, who in 2012 became just the 26th head coach in NCAA Division I history to hit the 300-win mark, currently ranks ninth among active coaches in career wins and has accumulated more wins than any other coach in Virginia program history.
During her tenure in Charlottesville, Madison has recruited and coached a pair of four-time All-Americans, Paige Selenski and Elly Buckley. Selenski and Buckley are two of only 11 players in ACC history to earn All-American honors four times and two of 13 players to be a four-time All-ACC honoree. In all, six different Cavaliers have earned 16 All-America honors while playing for Madison.
Two of Madison's All-Americans, Selenski and Michelle Vittese, helped the U.S. National Team to its first gold medal at the Pan American Games in October 2011. Vittese, the 2012 USA Field Hockey Player of the year, and Selenski also competed with the US squad at the 2012 London Olympics and have helped elevate the US squad to a world No. 5 ranking in the lead up to the 2016 Rio Olympics.
Madison, a former member of the NCAA National Field Hockey Committee, is in her 27th overall season as a collegiate head coach. She is the only person to take three different Division I programs (Temple, Michigan State and Virginia) to the NCAA Tournament and her teams have consistently been ranked in the top-10 at various times of the past decade. In addition to her experience in the college ranks, Madison also is the only active Division I head coach to be a part of two United States Olympic staffs, having assisted the 1988 Olympic Team in Seoul and served as the head goalkeeper coach with the 1996 squad in Atlanta.
Last season (2014), Madison led Virginia to its third-ever ACC regular-season title, with the Cavaliers tying North Carolina atop the conference standings, but earning the top seed in the conference tournament. Freshman Tara Vittese led the ACC in shots, shots per game, points, points per game, goals and assists through the end of the regular season, becoming the fifth-ever Cavalier to be named the ACC Freshman of the Year and the second-ever to be named a first-team All-American in her rookie season. Virginia's 3-0 blanking of Miami (Ohio) on Sept. 9 was Madison's 119th victory at the helm of the Cavaliers, putting her at the top of the career wins list in program history.
2013 should have been a "rebuilding" year for the Cavaliers with the team losing a pair of US National Team players/Olympians (Selenski and Vittese) to graduation. The preseason ACC poll had UVa picked to finish second-to-last in the conference. Instead, Virginia rose to as high as No. 4 in the NFHCA poll, finishing the regular season ranked No. 5 and earning the program's 19th bid to the NCAA Tournament. ACC Freshman of the Year Lucy Hyams anchored the midfield, helping to lead Buckley and a pair of freshmen strikers, Riley Tata and Caleigh Foust, to create a very potent attack. The defense also stepped up, registering six shutouts in the regular season. Buckley led the ACC in seven different categories including points, goals and defensive saves.
In 2012, Madison hit a pair of career benchmarks. She won the 300th game of her career with the Cavaliers' 5-4 victory over No. 3 Old Dominion on Sept. 2, becoming just the 26th head coach in NCAA Division I history to hit the 300-win mark. Madison currently ranks ninth among active coaches in career wins. She also had her 100th win at Virginia with the Cavaliers 3-2 victory over Iowa in the first round of the NCAA Tournament, tying her for second place on the Cavalier career victories list.
Madison was named the 2012 Coach of the Year in honors announced by the Virginia Sports Information Directors (VaSID), her fourth time winning the honor.
Madison led the Cavaliers back to the NCAA Tournament in 2012 after missing out in 2011. Not only did Virginia earn a berth, they had the privilege of hosting the first and second round games. After a victory over Iowa in the first round, UVa fell in the second round to eventual national champion Princeton.
2012 saw a rewriting of the record book as Selenski became both the Virginia and the ACC career points leader. Selenski also scored the 100th goal of her career in the NCAA first round tournament game against Iowa, becoming just the tenth player in NCAA history and the second in the ACC and at UVa to score 100 career goals. She became a four-time All-American and was just the ninth player in ACC history to earn All-Conference honors four times. Vittese and Elly Buckley earned their third All-American honors.
Of the ten players to score 100 or more goals in NCAA history, Madison recruited two of them. In addition to Selenski, Madison also signed Kristy Gleason (1989-93) at Iowa. Gleason finished her career ranked third in the NCAA record book with 132 goals for the Hawkeyes.
The Cavaliers advanced the NCAA semifinals in 2010 after beating Michigan State (3-2 in overtime) and Princeton (4-2) to join Maryland, North Carolina and Ohio State in the national semifinals. Virginia finished the season ranked No. 3 by the National Field Hockey Coaches Association.
Virginia made its third trip to the NCAA semifinals in 2009 under Madison, defeating Richmond and Michigan State (in overtime) en route to a final four berth. The Cavaliers also advanced to the championship game of the ACC Tournament, playing for the conference title on their home field. The team set records for wins (20) and games played (24) in a season.
UVa's Paige Selenski and Michelle Vittese were both named to the United States National Team in the summer of 2010 and earned their first international caps in matches with the English and Irish national teams that summer.
Selenski and Vittese were each named first-team All-Americans by the NFHCA in 2010 and teammate Elly Buckley was a third-team honoree, marking the second consecutive year three Cavaliers earned the distinction of All-American. Additionally, Virginia placed seven student-athletes on the all-region team, including a school record four first-team members (Buckley, Selenski, Vittese and Rachel Jennings). Buckley was also selected to the national all-rookie team, named by womensfieldhockey.com, becoming the sixth Virginia named to the squad under Madison.
In 2009, three Cavaliers were named NFHCA All-Americans, including Selenski (first team), Inga Stockel (second team) and Vittese (third team) Selenski, a two-time Honda Award semifinalist, joined Stockel and Vittese on the All-ACC team. For the second straight year, Virginia put five members on the all-region squad and Charlotte van den Broek was honored as part of the national all-rookie team.
During the 2008 campaign, Virginia returned to the quarterfinals of the NCAA Tournament and freshman Paige Selenski made program history, becoming the first Cavalier to be named the National Rookie of the Year. UVa finished the season with a No. 12 ranking, had two All-Americans and All-ACC selections in senior Inge Kaars Sijpesteijn and Selenski, and had five team members picking up all-region honors, with freshmen Michelle Vittese and Floor Vogels as well as junior Traci Ragukas joining Kaars Sijpesteijn and Selenski. Virginia also continued to put at least one member on the national all-rookie team for the third time in program history. Selenski and Vittese, who both represented the United States at the Junior World Cup in Boston, were named to the squad.
In 2007, Madison helped lead Virginia to its second straight NCAA Tournament appearance. UVa was ranked eighth in the nation to start the year, and Ragukas and Kaars Sijpesteijn were both named to the NFHCA second-team all-region squad. Kaars Sijpesteijn additionally received All-America and All-ACC honors for the second consecutive season. Also for the second straight year, Virginia had a member selected to the National All-Rookie squad in first-year Shelly Edmonds.
In her first year in Charlottesville, Madison orchestrated Virginia's return to the top-10 and was named the 2006 National Coach of the Year by womensfieldhockey.com. That year, Virginia rose to as high as No. 4 in the nation and advanced to the quarterfinals of the NCAA Tournament before ending the season with a 14-8 record against the nation's fifth-toughest schedule. Madison coached Kaars Sijpesteijn to first-team All-America honors, Virginia's first first-team All-American since 1998. She also mentored Ragukas to National Rookie Team recognition, the first such honor for a Cavalier in school history.
The former head coach at Michigan State from 1993-2005, Madison led the Spartans to their first-ever No. 1 ranking. Michigan State advanced to the NCAA Tournament four times, including two NCAA semifinal berths (2002, 2004) and two quarterfinal appearances (2001, 2003) during her tenure in East Lansing. Madison, named the 2001 Big Ten Coach of the Year, also guided the Spartans to back-to-back conference titles in 2001 and 2002. During the 2002 season, she picked up another coaching honor, being tabbed the the West Region Coach of the Year. Madison left Michigan State as the school's all-time leader in victories.
The Philadelphia native spent four seasons as the head coach at Temple prior to her appointment at Michigan State. At Temple, she took the team to national championship contention in just her second year at the helm. During Madison's tenure, the Owls compiled a 53-27-6 record and appeared in three NCAA Tournaments, twice advancing to the quarterfinals. Temple also won the A-10 Conference Tournament Championship in 1991.
Madison additionally served a two-year (1989-90) stint as the assistant coach for the Owl women's lacrosse team that advanced to the NCAA Semifinals both seasons. During her stay in Philadelphia, Madison coached 12 All-Americans, 21 all-region selections, three Academic All-Americans, two National Team members and one Honda Broderick award winner.
Prior to her position at Temple, Madison served as an assistant coach at Iowa for seven seasons (1982-89). During that span, the Hawkeyes advanced to the Final Four four times and captured their only NCAA championship title in 1986.
A former member of the U.S. Field Hockey Board of Directors and the United States Field Hockey Foundation, Madison has been integrally involved in the U.S. Field Hockey community. In addition to her stint with the 1988 and 1996 Olympic Teams, she was an assistant coach at the 1994 World Cup in which the United States won the bronze, their highest finish in history.
She also served as a notational analyst for the 1998 World Cup in Utrecht for England. Madison, who spent two and a half years on the coaching staff for the U.S. National Team, served as head coach on the 2003 U.S. Under-20 team, after coaching at the prestigious "A" camp for the U.S. Junior National Team trials. In the spring of 2002, Madison assisted the U.S. National Team at the Champions Challenge in South Africa. In the summer of 2005, Madison was named to the USFHA Board of Directors and was part of the advisory committee that made the decision to hire Terry Walsh, the Technical Director of High Performance for USA Field Hockey.
Madison has also coached the Midwest Cyclones of the United Airlines Field Hockey League, leading the team to runner-up finishes in the championship game in 2000 and 2001.
Madison is a 1982 physical education graduate of Rutgers University, where she played field hockey and lacrosse. She earned her master's degree in athletic administration from Iowa in 1984. Madison was inducted into the Gloucester County (N.J.) Hall of Fame in 1993 and the Williamstown (N.J.) High School Hall of Fame in 1992.
A-10 Tournament Champions
NCAA First Round
56-28-6 (4 Seasons)
3 NCAA Appearances
Big Ten Champions
Big Ten Tournament Champions
Big Ten Champions
Big Ten Tournament Champions
Big Ten Champions
4 NCAA Appearances
NCAA First Round
NCAA Second Round
NCAA First Round
ACC Regular-Season Co-Champions
127-67-0 (9 Seasons)
7 NCAA Appearances
339-211-8 (26 Seasons)
14 NCAA Appearances
Coaching Accolades Big Ten Coach of the Year - 2001 West Region Coach of the Year - 2002 WomensFieldHockey.com National Coach of the Year - 2006 Zag Field Hockey/NFHCA Hall of Fame Inductee - 2013