Ithaca assistant moves up

More news about: Coast Guard | Ithaca

Alex Ivansheck has been named the head coach of the women's basketball team at the United States Coast Guard Academy.

Ivansheck spent the last six seasons as an assistant coach at Ithaca where she helped the Bombers post a 116-50 record, including a 81-11 mark in Empire 8 games. Ithaca made three NCAA playoff appearances, won four conference regular-season titles and two postseason tournament championships and recorded the league's first 16-0 record ever in any sport during her time there.

Ivansheck replaces Rick Gaines, who went 15-58 (.205) in three seasons. The Bears have gone 2-34 in the NEWMAC over the past two seasons.

She is no stranger to Southeastern Connecticut, growing up in Salem and graduating from Norwich Free Academy in 2000. While at NFA, she played for coach Bill Scarlata and won a pair of Class LL state championships while the team qualified for the ECC and state championship in each of her four seasons on the basketball team. Ivansheck was also a four-year member of the cross country team that participated in both the state and New England championships for four consecutive seasons.

"I'm confident and excited that our women's basketball program will return to a high level of success and achievement under the leadership of Alex Ivansheck," said Tim Fitzpatrick, Coast Guard athletic director. "Her credentials as a coach and a student-athlete are very strong indeed. She is a person of great enthusiasm, basketball knowledge and integrity whose presence will immediately elevate our program - a proven winner in each and every way. Our cadet-athletes will benefit greatly from her expertise and guidance."

Prior to arriving at Ithaca, Ivansheck spent the 2005-06 season with the women's basketball staff at William Smith, where she helped the Herons to a second round of the NCAA playoffs. William Smith finished 22-8 and won the Liberty League's regular-season and championship tournament titles.

Ivansheck played at Ithaca from 2000 to 2005, including a medical redshirt season. A point guard, she helped the Bombers to a record of 109-28 during her career, with NCAA playoff berths each season. Ithaca won Empire 8 titles in 2001, 2003, 2004 and 2005. In her career, Ivansheck scored 567 points and pulled down 309 rebounds. Her career totals of 333 assists and 253 steals are both fourth on the program's all-time lists (she was third in both categories after finishing her career). She received honorable mention to the Empire 8 all-star team in 2002 and 2005.

She interned with the Women's Sport Foundation as an undergraduate at Ithaca. Ivansheck earned her bachelor's degree in sport management, with a minor in coaching, in 2004 and received a master's degree in business administration in 2005 at Ithaca. Ivansheck will also serve as an instructor in the academy's health and physical education program.

"I am excited for the opportunity that athletic director Tim Fitzpatrick and the U.S. Coast Guard Academy have provided me to be the next head coach of the women's basketball program," said Ivansheck. "It is a privilege and an honor to represent such an outstanding service academy. Although I am sad to leave Ithaca College, I am very grateful for the many opportunities I've had that prepared me for this new phase of my career."

Coast Guard was 5-19 overall last season and 1-17 in the New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference after going 3-21 overall and 1-17 during the 2010-11 season.

The Bears return all five starters from last year's team and will open the season at home on Thursday, Nov. 15 vs. Mitchell.