July 18, 2017
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – Virginia field hockey head coach Michele Madison announced on Tuesday (July 18) the hiring of Rachel Dawson as assistant field hockey coach.
Dawson recently retired as a member of the USA Field Hockey women’s national team. She was a three-time Olympian, competing in Beijing 2008, London 2012 and Rio 2016. The 2016 squad finished fifth. Dawson, who has 298 international caps, won five golds in international competitions, including the 2011 and 2015 Pan Am Games, and four silvers.
“I sought the most passionate candidates when looking for someone to join our coaching staff and Rachel’s enthusiasm and dedication topped the charts,” Madison said. “Her understanding and interests in developing the total student-athlete fits with our developmental philosophies for the individual and the team for success on the field, in the classroom and, most importantly, in life.”
Dawson is an Atlantic Coast Conference veteran, graduating with distinction from the University of North Carolina. Dawson earned the 2007 Honda Award as the National Player of the Year for field hockey and was selected as one of the five finalists for the Honda-Broderick Cup as the nation’s top collegiate female athlete. With 19 goals that season, the midfielder was the top scorer for the No. 1 offensive team in the country while also being named the 2007 ACC Defensive Player of the Year and the 2007 ACC Tournament MVP.
“I am thrilled to be joining the UVA field hockey program, and thankful to be given the opportunity to contribute to a program that embodies and celebrates excellence in all domains,” Dawson said. “I love competition, I love the sport of field hockey and I am eager to help each athlete explore, discover and express their own understanding and passion for the game. The University of Virginia offers the perfect environment and culture for learning and discovery. I am excited, and thankful, to become a part of it.”