Virginia Tech Hires John Sung to Lead Women’s Lacrosse Program
Respected coach guided Winthrop back-to-back NCAA berths, 37-7 record over past two seasons
BLACKSBURG (HokieSports.com) – Virginia Tech President Dr. Timothy D. Sands, Director of Athletics Whit Babcock and the Virginia Tech Board of Visitors announced announced Friday that John Sung has formally accepted an offer to become Virginia Tech’s head women’s lacrosse coach.
“We are very pleased to welcome Coach Sung and his family to Virginia Tech,” Babcock said. “Coach Sung has distinguished himself by building several lacrosse programs at various levels and quickly making them competitive and successful. We are excited that he has embraced the challenge and opportunity of leading our women’s lacrosse program which competes in the nation’s toughest conference, the ACC.
Sung joins Virginia Tech after building the Winthrop University program from scratch beginning in May 2011. He oversaw the program’s rapid ascent as a regional powerhouse after beginning competition in 2013. In only the program’s third season in 2015, Sung led Winthrop to a 17-4 record as the Eagles qualified for the NCAA Tournament appearance after winning both the Big South regular-season and tournament titles. In 2016, Winthrop went 20-3, winning the Big South Tournament Championship and advancing to another NCAA Tournament berth.
“Throughout our search process it became evident the level of respect that Coach Sung has earned among his peers in the lacrosse community as an innovator, a motivator, a recruiter and a mentor of student-athletes,” Babcock continued. “I’d also like to express my gratitude to the search committee for a job well done.”
The 2015 and 2016 Big South Coach of the Year, Sung currently chairs the NCAA Division I Lacrosse Committee and also serves on the U.S. Lacrosse Convention Education Committee. His 2015 squad set Big South single-season records for points, goals, free-position goals, shots, shots on goal, ground balls, draw controls and caused turnovers.
“It is truly an honor to join Virginia Tech as the leader of our women’s lacrosse program,” Sung said. “I’m grateful for the trust that Whit and his team have placed in me as we seek to establish a culture where passionate and hard-working student-athletes can excel academically and make Hokie Nation proud of their accomplishments on the field.
“I’m excited to meet our team and begin recruiting for Virginia Tech,” he continued. “The introduction of the 90-second shot clock will give us the opportunity to play at a faster tempo and we’ll look to use that rule to our advantage. My wife, Tina, and our family are excited about moving to Blacksburg and embracing this opportunity to join Hokie Nation.”
Prior to compiling a 54-26 overall record at Winthrop, Sung led the Haudenosaunee Nation to the quarterfinals of the 2013 Federation of International Lacrosse World Cup held in Canada. The team finished in seventh place out of a total of 19 teams. He also coached the team in the 2009 Federation of International Lacrosse in the Czech Republic.
Sung’s ascent as an NCAA coach began at Division III Adrian College in Michigan, where he started the program from the ground up and compiled a 46-19 overall record. His 2011 squad started the season 1-4 before registering 15 consecutive victories to earn a berth in the NCAA Division III Tournament. After posting a 6-7 overall record in their first season in 2008, the squad went 10-4 in 2009, 14-3 in 2010 and 16-5 in 2011.
Before beginning the program at Adrian College, Sung spent five years as the assistant women's club lacrosse coach at the University of Michigan, setting the groundwork for that program to eventually become at varsity sport competing in the Big Ten. The Wolverines accumulated a 93-22 record during this tenure.
A longtime trainer of goalies, Sung has held various coaching positions with Birmingham Seaholm High School and the Detroit Lacrosse Club. He has been the assistant director of the Great Lakes Women's Lacrosse Camp since 1997. In addition to his work at various levels in the lacrosse community, Sung has a wealth of sales and management experience in the private sector.
Sung was the starting goalkeeper of the Oakland University lacrosse team in 1997 and 1998 and was also a two-year captain. He was also member of a two International Cup U16 championship teams in 1993 and 1994. He completed his degree in Bachelor of Arts degree in communications from Oakland in 2007.
Married to wife, Tina, Sung also has three stepsons, Darek, Devin and Zachary, and daughter, Abby.