CORPUS CHRISTI – Lauren Molinaro has been hired as the Texas A&M – Corpus Christi women's soccer program's first assistant coach, head coach Shanna Caldwell announced today. Molinaro, who has coached at both the professional and collegiate levels, officially joined the Islanders family today.
"I'm ecstatic to have as accomplished and enthusiastic a person as Lauren become our assistant coach," Caldwell said. "I've known Lauren for over 10 years, and she has the drive and personality that embody a successful collegiate coach and recruiter. She also is a strong teacher of the game and gets the most out of her players on the field. She will be a tremendous addition, not just for Islanders Soccer, but for Texas A&M – Corpus Christi."
Most recently, Molinaro served as the head coach of the New England Mutiny of the Women's Professional Soccer League, a position she has held since 2010. She is also the team's summer camp director and an assistant coach for Manchester (Conn.) High School.
"Shanna and I have known each other since we were teammates in college, and I'm eager to start working with her to build the Islanders program," Molinaro said. "This is such a unique opportunity for me, to join a program that is in its infancy, but in a wonderful location and with a strong support system from the university. Working with a clean slate alongside someone I respect so much as Shanna is a thrilling endeavor for me at this point in my career."
In addition to her professional experience, Molinaro spent three years as an assistant coach for the University of Rhode Island in Kingston, R.I. There, she developed and implemented technical team training as well as individual player development sessions for her teams. She also served as a national recruiter for the Rams as well as coordinating team travel and scheduling along with fundraising activities.
In her three seasons at URI, the Rams had nine Atlantic 10 All-Conference selections, including four honorees to the league's All-Rookie Team. Among those was 2007 Rookie of the Year Jessica Babice. The 2006 Rams also set a school record with six players honored by the A-10.
Molinaro has also spent significant time working on the club and Olympic Development Program levels. She served as a Region I ODP staff coach from 2004-06, then joined the Rhode Island ODP staff from 2007-09. The native of Ellicott City, Md., served as the head coach of the Eagle Elite U-17/U-18 Program from 2004-06 and was an assistant for Fortuna Rhode Island from 2006-09.
Molinaro played four years for the University of Connecticut, serving as the team captain in the 2000 season. She was also a standout off the field, earning a Scholar-Athlete Award in each of her four seasons and being named the Outstanding Senior Scholar-Athlete in 2000. She was a member of the Dean's List every semester at UConn and earned recognition as a Scholar-Athlete All-American in 2000. Following her collegiate career, she was one of the top draft picks for the Bay Area Cyber Rays of the Women's United Soccer Association.
Following her playing career, she spent the 2001-02 season as a graduate assistant coach at her alma mater. She holds both bachelor's (2001) and master's degrees (2002) from Connecticut in education.