Marian Ware Director of Athletics, Physical Education, and Recreation Brad Koch has officially announced the removal of Interim tag and appointment of Dawn Grant, Swarthmore College Head Women’s Basketball Coach.
“Dawn’s efforts this past year were exemplary,” said Koch. “It is clear that she is committed to building and sustaining a program that is positioned as one of the top teams in the Centennial Conference and within our region. Beyond that, she is also a proven leader and mentor off the court, and her ability to inspire, earn trust, and build unity was on full display all season.
I look forward to the direction this program is heading, and I am eager to support Dawn’s vision to reach student-athlete, team, and institutional goals for the women’s basketball program.”
Grant led the Garnet to a 14-11 overall record with a 10-10 conference mark in her first season as interim head coach. The team narrowly missed out on securing the final postseason spot in the Centennial Tournament as the squad finished sixth overall in the standings.
The head coach’s interim season was filled with numerous successes despite battling adversity as the team returned to play in 2021-22.
Under the leadership of Grant, the program finished with a winning record for the first time since the 2013-14 season. The squad’s 14 wins also marked the second-highest, single-season win total for the program in the past decade.
The highlight of the season for Grant and her squad came against No. 22 University of Mary Washington. The Garnet knocked off the nationally-ranked Eagles, 65-60, for the team’s first nationally-ranked victory in program history. Leading up to the milestone win, the program had previously gone 0-27 against nationally-ranked competition.
“Being elevated to head coach was validation that the players and the administration at Swarthmore believed in me,” said Grant. “I am truly vested in ensuring that my players have a great student-athlete experience and be respected contenders in our conference.”
In her first season with the program, Grant was able to get the most out of a young roster. Junior guard Dana Bandurick flourished under the coaching of Grant as she established herself as a top player in the conference. Bandurick put together a career year for the Garnet on her way to earning the team’s first All-Centennial First-team selection since the 2014-15 season.
The junior averaged a double-double on the season as she led the conference in scoring with 16.8 points, and ranked third in rebounding with 10.4 per game. Bandurick was one of two players in the conference to average a double-double and scored over 20 points in six games this season.
The Garnet return the majority of its key pieces as they head into the 2022-23 season. In addition to Bandurick, the Garnet also return Alyssa Hayashi, who averaged 12.2 points this season and started every game during her freshman campaign.
Katelyn Becker also returns to the squad after starting 20 games during her freshman campaign, while Kim Kockenmeister is back with the squad as she continues her important role as a veteran leader on and off the court.
“We are still a young team, but we have been battle tested,” said Grant. “With the freshmen we have coming in the fall, we will have more depth that will help elevate our level of play. I am truly excited about the future of Swarthmore women’s basketball and excited about having the opportunity to navigate this program.
I would like to thank President Smith, our Provost Sarah Willie-LeBreton, our Athletic Director Brad Koch, the entire athletics department administrative team for entrusting me with our women’s basketball program.”D3