|Title:||Recreation Sports Coordinator and Event Management|
|College:||New Hampshire '82|
Carla Hesler, who enters her 14th year at the helm of the Saint Michael's field hockey program in 2012, has established herself as one of the most successful coaches in College history.
In 2000 and 2001, Hesler's squads made back-to-back appearances in the NCAA Tournament semifinals, falling short of the the national championship game by just one goal both times. Saint Michael's was the NE-10 regular-season champion in 2000 and co-champion in 2001 and 2002.
The 2000 and 2002 Northeast-10 Conference Coach of the Year and the 2000 National Field Hockey Coaches Association (NFHCA) North Region Coach of the Year has amassed a 125-119 record in 13 seasons, just two wins shy of matching SMC Hall of Famer Anne Adams' program record. In those 13 campaigns, the Purple Knights have advanced at least to the NE-10 Tournament semifinals seven times.
After a debut season in 1999 during which her charges went 11-6 overall and 4-2 in the league, Hesler led the Purple Knights to a 26-3 regular-season NE-10 mark between 2000 and 2002. Her 2003 team went 13-7 and went to an NE-10 Tournament semifinal, the 2004 team earned yet another postseason berth, and her 2005 team went 10-9 while making the NE-10 postseason and finishing the season ranked 10th in the national poll.
Both her 2006 and 2007 squads advanced to the NE-10 Tournament semifinals and, in 2008, she guided the program to its eight winning record in 10 years, finishing 11-8. In 2009, Hesler coached the 300th win in program history, a 3-2 victory at Assumption College on Oct. 17, and she coached her 200th field hockey game for the Purple Knights versus Southern Connecticut State University on Sept. 26. After becoming the longest-tenured active female head coach at the College in 2010, her 2011 squad posted the program's highest NE-10 win total in three seasons despite fielding 12 freshmen.
Hesler brought a wealth of field hockey experience with her to Saint Michael's. She has led her teams to a career record of 213-222-8 as head coach in a combined 25 years at Colgate University, Yale University and Saint Michael's. She also worked as an assistant coach at Boston College, Brown University, Northeastern University, Old Dominion University and Princeton University.
Hesler has been actively involved in the United States Field Hockey Association (USFHA) developmental programs, including acting as an instructor at the USA Field Hockey A, B and C Camps. She was the head coach of the USA Under-21 national team that competed in Seoul, Korea, in 1997. Hesler has coached within the USFHA Futures Program since 1990, serving as the Atlantic Region coaching director between 1990 and 1995, while hosting Region 1 tournaments at Saint Michael's.
Hesler is a 2007 graduate of the NCAA Women's Coaches' Academy, and on Nov. 1, 2009, was inducted into the New Agenda: Northeast Women's Hall of Fame, an award that honors those who have promoted sport for girls and women in New England as a coach, official and/or advocate. She also graduated from the Women's Coaches Academy and the Dimension 2 program, which are both sponsored by the NCAA and the WinStar Foundation. Hesler has earned her USA Field Hockey Level II certification.
A 1982 graduate of the University of New Hampshire, Hesler played both field hockey and lacrosse as an undergraduate, and was a member of the U.S. National Field Hockey Squad from 1979 to 1982. She participated in three National Sports Festivals in the early 1980s and was named an All-America in 1979 and 1981. On top of all that success, she was named UNH's Female Athlete of the Year in 1982 and was inducted into the University's Hall of Fame in November 2001.
The Lynnfield, Mass., native also has extensive lacrosse coaching experience, having coached at the college level for 15 years. She owns 100 wins as a collegiate coach, serving as the head coach at Old Dominion (1983) and Colgate (1986-89) before guiding Saint Michael's from 2001 to 2010. Hesler holds the Saint Michael's record with 64 victories. Colgate was the New York State Women's Collegiate Athletic Association runner-up in both 1986 and 1987 under Hesler.
Hesler also serves the College as the recreation sports coordinator and in an event management capacity.