The Oswego State athletic program will kick off the 2008-09 season with three new head coaches, one assistant elevated to the top position, and a new sports information director.
Brandi Ostrander takes over coaching duties for both field hockey and women's lacrosse, while Brian Cole '97, '06, who competed on the men's tennis team at Oswego State during the early '90s, returns to take the reins of the program. Erin Skaradek will handle interim head coaching duties for women's tennis this fall in addition to serving as women's basketball assistant coach.
The trio joins Andrew Hunsinger, who was elevated to interim cross country and track and field head coach after serving as an assistant a year ago. Mark Coley was named the college's sports information director in July.
Ostrander joins Oswego State from Herkimer County Community College, where she was part of three National Junior College Athletic Association championship tournament teams as a player and a coach.
A native of East Springfield, Ostrander attended Herkimer for two seasons, from 2003 to 2005, and was a member of the inaugural varsity women's lacrosse team. After a 3-5 season in 2004, she led the Generals to a 12-1 record the following year. The team won the Region III title and finished third in their first NJCAA national tournament appearance.
She graduated from Herkimer with an associate's degree in physical education, was named the school's Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year, a SUNY Chancellor's Scholar-Athlete, and garnered a spot in Who's Who of American Junior College Students.
She served as a volunteer assistant coach for Herkimer in 2006, the team finished 13-1, repeated as Region III Champions and finished third nationally. Ostrander took over the reins of the program in 2007, leading Herkimer to a 9-5 record and fourth-place finish in the NJCAA national tournament.
Ostrander had seven players receive All-Region accolades under her tutelage, with one earning NJCAA first-team All-America accolades. Her effort was rewarded by being named NJCAA District C Coach of the Year.
Under her leadership, the Herkimer women's lacrosse program garnered NJCAA National Academic Team of the Year accolades four consecutive years.
Ostrander received her bachelor's degree in education for physical education in May 2007 from SUNY Cortland and is currently pursuing her master's degree in education at Oswego.
BRIAN COLE '97, '06
Cole's relationship with Oswego State spans more than a decade. He competed on the men's tennis team during the 1993 and 1994 seasons before injury ended his playing days. He finished his first collegiate tour with a bachelor's degree in broadcasting/mass communications in 1997. He returned to Oswego a few years later in pursuit of a teaching career and obtained a second bachelor's degree in 2006 in elementary education with a social studies concentration.
He makes his collegiate coaching debut after serving a year as the boys' tennis coach at Oswego High School, where he guided a team with only three returning players to an 8-9 record. Cole has taught in the Oswego City School District since 2006, serving as a substitute teacher at the elementary, middle and high school levels. He also served a season as the boys' varsity swimming and diving coach for North Rose-Wolcott High School, where he is beginning his first year this fall teaching at the elementary level.
Erin Skaradek, a native of New Hartford, joins Oswego State as a 2008 graduate of Elmira College, where she earned dual bachelor's degrees in childhood education and anthropology/sociology. She also received her state teaching certification for childhood education.
Skaradek played a vital role in the success of the Elmira women's basketball program, serving three seasons as an assistant coach with the Soaring Eagles' junior varsity team. During her stay, Elmira won the regular-season championship in the Empire 8 Conference during the 2006-07 season, posted back-to-back runner-up finishes in the Empire 8 Conference Championship Tournament and earned repeat Eastern College Athletic Conference Upstate Championship.
Elmira was one of the top 10 most-improved teams in NCAA Division III, finishing the 2005-06 campaign with a 19-11 record after going 8-17 the year before. Skaradek has also served other roles while at Elmira, as sports information student assistant and a manager of the Soaring Eagles women's lacrosse team.
Coley joined SUNY Oswego July 15 as sports information director after an eight-year stint as the SID with the University Athletic Association, an eight-school, 22-sport NCAA Division III conference.
Prior to joining the UAA, Coley was interim assistant sports information director at SUNY Cortland during the 1999-2000 intercollegiate season. The Rochester native worked 12 years as an editorial assistant at the Democrat and Chronicle, where he served a number of roles from phone clerk, copy editor and assignment writer.
Coley is a 1998 graduate of SUNY Cortland, earning his bachelor's degree in communication studies. He also earned his associate's degree in audiovisual technology from Monroe Community College in 1985.
Queensbury native Hunsinger takes over the men's and women's cross country and track and field programs on an interim basis for the 2008-09 season after serving as assistant coach for both during the 2007-08 campaign.
A 2007 graduate of SUNY Plattsburgh with a bachelor's degree in sociology and a minor in coaching, Hunsinger was a captain on the Cardinals' indoor and outdoor track teams. He established school records as a member of the 400-meter (outdoor) and 800-meter (indoor) relays, along with several All-SUNYAC and All-ECAC honors.
Prior to Plattsburgh, he attended SUNY New Paltz, where he was the SUNYAC champion in the 100-meter dash in 2003 and held six school records before the program was discontinued in 2004.
Hunsinger is Level I certified by USA Track & Field and served his internship at Seton Catholic High School in Plattsburgh in the spring of 2007, where he worked with sprinters, hurdlers and jumpers from grades 7-12.
-- Mark Coley
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