Hope College has hired Kim Vincent as its head women's lacrosse coach.
She succeeds Tracy Benjamin, who coached the Flying Dutch during their first two varsity seasons and helped her alma mater transition to a varsity sport from the club level.
Vincent comes to Hope from Grand Haven High School, where she spent the past seven seasons as head girls lacrosse coach for the Buccaneers. She founded Grand Havens girls club program in 2005 and oversaw its growth to varsity status.
Hope co-athletic director Melinda Larson said that Vincent will bring a passion for student-athletes and the game of lacrosse to Hope College.
"She has built a program that centers around holistic development of students and has proven to be successful both on and off the field," Larson said.
Vincent guided Grand Haven to a 13-3 record last spring. The Buccaneers finished second in the OK Rainbow 2 Conference.
Vincent said that she is honored to be the next head women's lacrosse coach at Hope.
Coaching is an amazing profession and having the opportunity to work at the college level is exciting for me, Vincent said. I have a lot of respect for Hope Colleges academics and athletics. Its a privilege to be selected to lead these young women through what should be one of the best chapters of their lives. I love the idea that they are playing for the love of the game, giving countless hours to their sport and team, while at the same time they're fully immersed in their studies.
Vincent said that Hope offers a strong foundation in women's lacrosse.
"With its two-year start as a varsity team and an athletic department with a reputation and tradition of excellence, we already have a lot of successes to build on including a solid roster of returners and a number of incoming players who are looking to join us in the fall," Vincent said. "I see this as an excellent opportunity to strengthen a developing program and continue building on a culture of competitive excellence."
Vincent also served as head girls lacrosse coach since 2012 of the Sand Sharks, a club program with Under-17 and Under-15 girls teams featuring players from Holland, Grand Haven, Spring Lake and Hudsonville. She coached the U-15 Sand Sharks to a bronze medal at the Meijer State Games of Michigan this summer.
Vincent is a member of U.S. Lacrosse and the Michigan Women's Lacrosse Coaches Association.
A 1981 Western Michigan University graduate, Vincent owns The Vincent Group, an independent marketing agency in West Olive for businesses and nonprofit organizations.
Vincent said that it has been a joy to coach at Grand Haven and see the program blossom.
"The sport was so new that girls came to the team without having experience or any idea about where to purchase equipment. They were the pioneers; it took a lot courage to be on the team in those days," Vincent said. "I will never forget these girls, because they played for the love of the sport and their team. I couldn't have built the program without the faith and support year after year of everyone from the players and their families to administration and athletics at Grand Haven High School.
"It's been exciting to see the sport catch on at all levels and the teams earn their way to winning seasons. For many, it's becoming family tradition with a number of sisters passing their love of the sport down to little sisters."