LODI, N.J. -- Felician University Drector of Athletics Ben DiNallo Jr. has announced that the school will add men's lacrosse as its 14th varsity intercollegiate sport.
"We are very excited to add men's lacrosse to our athletics department," he said. "Lacrosse is a sport that is growing in popularity in the state of New Jersey, and is historically very popular along the eastern seaboard. We believe this addition complements our current offerings very well."
The Golden Falcons will debut a women's lacrosse program this spring. The men's program will play its inaugural season in 2017.
"We are very excited to add men's lacrosse to our complement of sports programs," said Felician president Anne M. Prisco.
Prisco added that the sport "teaches cooperation and teamwork, and develops leadership skills."
DiNallo said that John Giunta of Pompton Plains has been named the first head coach of the men's team. Lacrosse becomes Felician's sixth varsity sport for men, joining baseball, basketball, cross-country, golf and soccer.
Giunta enters his first collegiate head coaching position. He comes to the Golden Falcons after three seasons as an assistant men's coach at Montclair State University.
With Giunta on staff, the Red Hawks won three consecutive Skyline Conference championships and made three NCAA Division III Tournament appearances.
Prior to Montclair State, he was an assistant at DePaul Catholic High School in Wayne.
Giunta is a 2010 graduate of William Paterson University, earning a Bachelor of Arts in History. His father, Peter Giunta, is a longtime NFL assistant coach, spending 2006 to 2014 with the New York Giants.