Laurie Kelly will begin her fourth season as the head coach of the Gustavus women’s basketball team in 2015. Kelly, a 1993 graduate of the University of St. Thomas with a degree in speech communications, came to Gustavus from Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff, where she directed the Division I Lumberjacks for nine seasons.
A Rochester, Minnesota, native, Kelly made a quick ascent through the Division II and I coaching ranks after record setting Division III playing career at the University of St. Thomas in the early `90s. In the past nine years at Northern Arizona, she has compiled the most wins in the program’s history (117), while also directing the team to its first-ever Big Sky Conference tournament title and NCAA tournament bid in the 2005-06 season. During Kelly’s tenure, the Lumberjacks advanced to the Big Sky tournament six times with two appearances in the championship game (2006, 2007), and her teams have registered two of the three 20-win seasons in the program’s history.
In addition to quality on the floor, her squads have also been strong in the classroom, with four players earning CoSIDA Academic All-District honors including one Academic All-American. The Lumberjacks were recognized in the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association Top 25 Academic Honor Roll six times, with two Top Ten national rankings.
Following the 2012-13 season, the Gustavus women’s basketball team achieved a significant milestone when the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) announced its Academic Top 25 Team Honor Roll following the year. Making their 15th appearance on the NCAA Division III honor roll, the Gusties were recognized as the team with the top cumulative grade point average in country at a 3.600 – a first in the program’s history.
Prior to her position at Northern Arizona, Kelly coached at Binghamton University in New York and built the Bearcats into one of the top Division II programs in the country before helping the institution transition to a Division I program in 2001-02. In that first year of Division I competition, Kelly directed the team to a 19-9 record and a second-place finish in the America East Conference. During her five years at Binghamton, Kelly compiled a record of 94-22, including a mark of 75-13 in the program’s final three years at the Division II level, and her squads won New England Collegiate Conference (NECC) titles in 1999 and 2000 and Eastern Collegiate Athletic Conference (ECAC) titles in 2000 and 2001. She was named ECAC Coach of the Year in 2000 and New York State Coach of the Year in 2002. Kelly started her collegiate coaching career as the graduate assistant coach at Minnesota State University, Mankato from 1996 to 1998. While she was at Minnesota State, Mankato she earned a master’s degree in physical education with an emphasis in sports administration.
Before her success in the coaching ranks, Laurie Trow Kelly was a standout player at the University of St. Thomas from 1989 to 1993 and is recognized by many as one of the greatest players in NCAA Division III history. A gifted athlete, the 6-1 Kelly scored 2,607 points and pulled down 1,204 rebounds in four years, earning Kodak All-America honors three consecutive seasons. In her senior season (1992-93), Kelly was voted National Player of the Year by the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association after averaging more than 26 points per game. She set 22 conference and 24 school records, was conference MVP three times and was also named Midwest Sports Channel NCAA Division III Women’s Athlete of the Year. In January of 2006, Kelly was one of five players selected to the NCAA Division III 25th Anniversary Team.
Laurie Kelly is the ninth head coach in the history of the Gustavus women’s basketball program. The Gusties have compiled an all-time record of 649-443 (.594), winning two Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference championships and making five NCAA tournament appearances.
In addition to her coaching duties, Kelly serves as the coordinator of the Gustavus Health Promotion program (GHP). The Gustavus Health Promotion program offers employees at Gustavus a variety of educational opportunities, assessment tools, and physical activity experiences so that they can achieve and maintain a healthy lifestyle.
Kelly lives in St. Peter with and her husband, Matt, and their two daughters, Morgan (11) and Madison (9).
|Synonym||Title||Times Taught||Terms Taught|
|HES-255||Women's Basketball Practicum||6||2015/FA, 2015/SP, 2014/FA, 2014/SP, 2013/FA, and 2013/SP|
|HES-177||Women's Basketball||6||2015/SP, 2014/SP, and 2013/SP|