My favorite sports event/memory/moment is ... a proud coaching moment that surpasses any moment or memory I've had had as a player. It was when I watched a group of young, female atheltes uplift one another after one of the hardest lisses in their careers. After losing in the TOC semifinals, I was able to witness true strength, respect and love, which overcame the devistating loss. As a coach, one can only hope to see unity and togetherness from their athletes. In those moments, I realized how a team has much more meaning than just winning - that a team's purpose is to be there through the good and the bad. It was an amazing thing to see, and be a part of. To be a coach and see the love and passion the athletes have for the sport and each other, surpasses any win ro loss. In that moment, I felt like I had done my job. We created a family within a team and that is a win in my books, regardless of the outcome of the game.
Marissa grew up in Kinnelon, NJ where she found her love for lacrosse in the 4th grade. Lacrosse quickly became her life and she knew, almost immediate, that she wanted to play at the collegiate level. Although she never had the opportunity to play club lacrosse due to constant injuries, Marissa played Varsity Lacrosse all four year for Kinnelon High School and during her Senior year, Manhattan College offered her a pot on the team.
At Manhattan College, Marissa studied psychology, with a concentration in clinical counseling, and minored in education. During her four years, she again suffered from multiple injuries. Although her Sophomore and Junior years were standout seasons for her, she started experiencing extreme discomfort in her right hip towards the end of her Junior season. She continued to play until doctors told her she had torn both her left and right labrums in both her hips. The doctors and trainers told her that, unfortunately, she suffered a career-ending injury and that she would never play sports again. She says that she was lucky enough to have an assistant coach who helped her through the mental, emotional and physical pain. Marissa assisted her in enhancing the team’s defense. Marissa graduated MC in 2016 and went on to continue her education at The College of Saint Elizabeth where she received her Masters in Counseling Psychology with a certification in School Counseling.
While going to school, Marissa began coaching for Building Blocks Lacrosse. While she was, and always will be unable to play lacrosse, it was through coaching young-female athletes, that she found her new calling. She fell in love with coaching and being a mentor to young athletes who love the sport just as much as she does. Being able to learn and grow from mentors at BBL in an experience she will always cherish. Through BBL, she found herself wanting more from the coaching world. In Spring 2019, Marissa began her high-school coaching career at Ridgewood High School. Being able to coach extraordinary athletes, while seeing their excitement and love for the game, made her realize that there is nothing better than giving back to the sport that has given her so much.
Now Marissa finds herself at Centercourt Lacrosse Club and she is excited to take these nest steps in her career as a coach. Being a coach is such a humbling experience and I has given her more joy than she ever imagined it would. It has been, and always will be, her goal to spread her love and knowledge about this sport. Although her time as an athlete was cut short, and no matter how much she misses playing, coaching is the greatest gift she has ever been giving.