UMass hires Smith Academy alum Lynne-Ann Kokoski as assistant coach

Staff Writer
Published: 5/23/2019 7:19:11 PM
Modified: 5/23/2019 7:19:01 PM

Smith Academy’s all-time leading scorer has returned home.

UMass announced Thursday it hired Lynne-Ann Kokoski as an assistant coach for the women’s basketball program, replacing Candice Finley, who left to take a job at Xavier. Kokoski spent the previous three years at William & Mary, which followed four years at Providence and three at her alma mater, Bryant.

“Lynne-Ann brings a tremendous amount of value to our staff,” coach Tory Verdi said in a release. “She is a veteran who has worked her way up through the ranks. Her energy is infectious and she is a straight-out winner! I’m so excited that she is a part of our program and there is no doubt that she makes us better.”

Kokoski worked primarily with the Tribe’s guards, turning the unit into one of the best backcourts in the Colonial Athletic Association. Bianca Boggs was a two-time first-team all-conference honoree under Kokoski’s tutelage the past two seasons. The Hatfield native was also instrumental in coaching point guard Jenna Green, who left William & Mary as the school’s all-time leader in career assists after setting the single-season record as a senior.

“A sincere thanks to Coach Verdi and our administration for this tremendous opportunity to return to my home state of Massachusetts,” Kokoski said in the release. “I grew up watching UMass men’s and women’s basketball and when I learned of the chance to return home and coach high-level basketball in my back yard, I was extremely excited. I look forward to continuing the forward momentum that our program has built over the past three years.”

Verdi also named assistant coach Candice Walker as UMass’ new recruiting coordinator. Walker has been with the program for four years, including the last three as Verdi’s assistant. She was the director of operations for the Minutewomen prior to the school hiring Verdi in 2016.


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