In his first four seasons on the sidelines at Lehigh, head coach Chris Wakely has instituted a disciplined, yet exciting brand of lacrosse, which has everyone around the program buzzing with anticipation. After building momentum in each of his first three years, Wakely led the Mountain Hawks to one of their best seasons in recent memory in 2005, including the most wins since 1997, the schools first-ever appearance in the Patriot League Tournament and two victories over schools ranked within the national top-25 poll. In addition, Wakely helped produce three All-League selections, and his second North-South All-Star Classic participant in Andrew Lucas, who finished his career as one of just nine players in Patriot League history to score 100-career goals.
Other highlights of Wakelys first four seasons include upsets of No. 20 Villanova in 2002 and No. 25 Penn in 2005, producing the nations top goal scorer in Tony Lowe in 2003 and defeating archrival Lafayette in each season, including 2005, which clinched a post season berth for the Brown and White. Wakely also coached the 2002 Patriot League Scholar Athlete of the Year in Mike Rabinovitz and two Academic All-Americans in Rabinovitz and Scott Carpenter.
A 1990 graduate of the University of Virginia, Wakely earned a bachelors degree in history while starting all four years as a midfielder for the Cavaliers. He was among the school and ACC leaders in assists and overall points, and set the school record for games played in a career with 53, which has since been broken. In addition, Wakely helped lead Virginia to the 1988 NCAA Final Four.
Wakely came to Lehigh from Elizabethtown College where he founded the first mens lacrosse program in school history. In just one year Wakely coordinated the recruitment of 32 student-athletes to launch a varsity program that began its first season in the spring of 2002.
Prior to his stint at Elizabethtown, Wakely served six years as head coach at Widener University. During his tenure, he led the Pioneers to MAC Championships in 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999 and 2000. Widener was undefeated in conference play for all five of those years and earned USILA National Rankings in 1999 and 2000. He was named MAC Coach of the Year in 1996, 1998 and 2000, and led the Pioneers to the Division III National Tournament in 2000.
Fifty-one Widener players earned honors under Wakelys guidance. He developed two USILA Division III All-Americans, four USILA Academic All-Americans, five USILA Division III North-South All-Stars, two MAC Players of the Year, and 38 All-MAC Conference All Stars.
While at Widener, Wakely was an Admissions Counselor for the first three years and served as an Assistant to the Athletic Director in his last three. In the latter he was responsible for all issues regarding compliance, eligibility, facilities, scheduling, work-study and team travel.
Wakely began his collegiate coaching career as an assistant at Villanova University in 1992.
Wakely and his wife Danielle reside in Bethlehem, Pa., with their two sons, Jack and Mickey, and daughter Katharine.