Greece Lacrosse Selects Their Head Coach for the 2018 World Games
The Greece Lacrosse Association is excited to announce Andrew Athens as the 1st Head Coach of the Men’s Senior team, which will be competing in Greece’s first ever World Championship, being
held in Nentanya, Israel in July of 2018. Athens, the current Associate Head Coach at D-1 Furman University has been mentored for the past five years by Richie Meade, the United States Head Coachin the last Men’s World Games in 2014. His experience developing a new D-1 program from scratch will help him to understand and outline the growth needed for Greece Lacrosse to become a serious player at the International Level.
Andrew Athens began his collegiate playing experience at Anne Arundel (Md.) Community College, where he played one season for the Pioneers and earned all-region honors before graduating with an associate degree in art in 2007. He then moved on to D-1 Presbyterian (S.C.) College for three seasons, and twice led the team in goals scored. He served two years as captain and finished his
career as PC's all-time leader in points, goals, and assists. Andrew graduated in May of 2011 with a degree in business administration, and began his collegiate coaching career there, serving as an undergraduate intern in 2011.
Athens first full time coaching job was at Queens University in Charlotte, N.C., where he served as the Royals' top assistant and defensive coordinator, leading Queens to a Conference Carolina
playoff appearance. When Richie Meade called him after that season, it was a no brainer for Athens to jump aboard and take on the challenge of building a new D-1 collegiate program at Furman. Meade calls Athens, “One of the future up and coming coaching stars in D-1.” In 2017, he led Furman to a three-way tie for the Southern Conference (SoCon) Championship, with a conference record of 6-1, a huge improvement after finishing 2-5 the year before. “I am honored to be named as the first Greek Men’s Coach,” Athens stated, “and I want to thank Bob Vlahakis and the Board of Directors for this great honor to lead the Greece National team.
My original last name is Athenasiades . . . shortened to Athens when my great grandparents came to the United States from Patras, Greece.” He added, “I would like to thank my head coach, Richie Meade, for his mentorship and enthusiastic support as I take on this special role as the head coach of the Greece National Lacrosse Team.”
Andrew Athens is one of 10 children, and 6 of them played collegiate lacrosse, including two sisters who were college All-Americans and currently coach at the collegiate level. His father, Colonel Art Athens, USMCR, (Ret.), played lacrosse at the Naval Academy in the mid-70’s, and serves today as the Director of the U.S. Naval Academy’s Center for Ethical Leadership.
“My goal for the Greece National team is to build a championship mind-set that honors the great athletic legacy of the Greek nation,” says Athens. “So far everyone with whom I have had contact with in the Greece Lacrosse Association has been outstanding, and I’m ready to get to work . . . Yasou!”
Athens is currently married to Kilee Ruppe of Spartanburg, S.C. and the couple has one son, Cruize.
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