Cemented as one of the top coaches in college lacrosse, John Danowski has led the Duke men’s lacrosse team to unprecedented success during his tenth-year tenure. Danowski was introduced as Duke’s eighth head men’s lacrosse coach on July 21, 2006 and quickly led the Blue Devils to some of the most successful lacrosse seasons in school history and to three NCAA Championships in five seasons.
In Danowski’s nine years at the helm of the Blue Devils lacrosse program, he has compiled an impressive 151-46 record in leading Duke to seven ACC regular season titles and four ACC tournament titles, eight straight appearances in the national semifinals from 2007-14, four in the NCAA title match and ultimately to the 2010, 2013 and 2014 national titles. The 2014 NCAA crown put Danowski, a winner of 370 career games, among a small group of nine coaches to win three national titles and among eight to capture consecutive crowns. Meanwhile, Duke’s run of eight straight NCAA semifinals rank as the second most of any program since 2000 with Syracuse.
A winner of nearly 80 percent of his games at Duke, the individual awards Blue Devil players have garnered is equally impressive. In 10 seasons, Danowski mentored 61 All-America selections, 31 All-ACC choices, two Tewaaraton Trophy winners, a pair of USILA Attackman of the Year honorees, a USILA Defenseman of the Year, three USILA Midfielder of the Year award recipients and 17 USILA Scholar All-America picks.
While the success on the field is unsurpassed in Duke lacrosse history, the student-athletes excellence in the classroom also is unrivaled. The Blue Devils consistently lead the ACC in All-ACC Academic picks as well as players on the ACC Academic Honor Roll. This past season, Duke had 31 players – nearly 70 percent of the team – achieve a 3.0 grade point average for the entire academic year, while Deemer Class garnered Scholar All-America honors.
Ron Caputo is in his 10th season as a member of the Duke lacrosse coaching staff. One of the great lacrosse minds nationally, Caputo works with the midfield and faceoff specialists.
In his nine seasons with the Blue Devils, Duke has posted a 134-43 record, captured three ACC titles, advanced to the NCAA Semifinals seven times and ultimately won the 2010, 2013 and 2014 national championships. Duke has ranked among the top 11 in scoring offense in each of the past nine campaigns and was among the top six in eight of those, including the No. 4 spot in 2015 and 2016.
Working closely with the faceoff specialists and the midfield, Duke has won just over 60 percent (1980-3221) of its restarts over the past seven seasons, including an impressive 62.5 percent in 2013. Under Caputo’s watch, Duke has had great success at the X with All-Americans CJ Costabile and Brendan Fowler and now Kyle Rowe.
Former Duke standout Matt Danowski joined the men’s lacrosse staff as an assistant coach in July 2012. Danowski works with Duke’s attackmen.
Duke’s offense has flourished under Danowski’s guidance, ranking second and third nationally in scoring in 2014 and 2013, respectively. In 2015, following the departure of All-American Jordan Wolf, Duke was fourth nationally in scoring offense at 14.28 goals per game. Duke led the ACC and was fourth again nationally with a 13.50 goals per game average. The Blue Devils have averaged over 13.5 goals per game in each of Danowski’s three seasons.
After becoming a household name in his rookie season, Justin Guterding continued to rewrite the records book with Danowski as a mentor. He led the team in scoring with 71 points to become the first Blue Devil to score 70-plus points in each of his first two seasons. He also became the fastest Blue Devil to 100 career points, reaching the benchmark in 25 games. Guterding’s play earned the attackman his first All-ACC and All-America honors.
Danowski, the NCAA all-time leading scorer and the son of the Duke head coach, joined the staff after a stellar career in which he led the Blue Devils to three NCAA semifinal berths, two national runner-up finishes, two ACC Tournament Championships and a 63-18 overall record. The 2007 consensus National Player of the Year as the recipient of both the Tewaaraton Trophy and the USILA Lt. Raymond J. Enners Award, Danowski finished his career with a NCAA record 353 points from 170 goals and 183 assists.
Alec Jernstedt joined the Duke men’s lacrosse coaching staff in August of 2015. He will work closely with the Blue Devils’ defensive corps.
Jernstedt, a native of Wilsonville, Ore., was a three-year letterwinner for Towson University. As a defenseman for the Tigers, Jernstedt played in 32 career games and helped lead Towson to the Colonial Athletic Association Championship game in 2009 and 2010.
A defensive and longstick midfielder a Towson, Jernstedt finished his career with 29 ground balls, 11 caused turnovers and three goals and an assist.
Prior to joining the Blue Hens staff, Jernstedt served as a youth and club lacrosse coach on both sides of the country. He was the head coach of the Rhino Lacrosse Club in Portland, Ore., from 2009-12 and followed that by working as a youth coach and marketing director for the Next Level Lacrosse Club in Bethesda, Md.