The job she has taken will have challenges, but it was the right time for Jessica Galatioto to make the move.
Galatioto, a 2011 Queensbury graduate and 2015 graduate of Castleton University, was named the head field hockey coach at Wells College in February. She’s been busy ever since trying to do what she can to help the Express have a more successful program.
She spent the last two field hockey seasons as an assistant coach at St. John Fisher, which went 30-9 during Galatioto’s time there.
“I pretty much knew even during this last fall season that I wanted a full-time assistant’s position or a head coach’s position because my St. John Fisher assistantship was very part-time and not my main income, which I wanted it to be,” Galatioto said by phone on Monday.
Galatioto, a former goalie, took a graduate assistant coach position with Bethany College in West Virginia — where she earned her master’s degree in teaching — before moving on to St. John Fisher.
Galatioto knew that Wells’ program had several coaches in the last few years. Its most recent coach was the full-time women’s lacrosse coach and only had taken the field hockey post on an interim basis.
Galatioto did have spring workouts with team members, which gave her a better sense of her returning players’ skill level.
“We’re a very small team (numbers-wise),” Galatioto said. “We don’t lose too many, but even the timing of my coming in February was a bit difficult because a lot of girls had committed or made up their minds.
“It’s definitely different, especially coming from St. John Fisher, finding the seniors who don’t have their plan together yet and might consider Wells,” she added. “A lot, most schools in fact, required deposits by May 1. Wells doesn’t do that, but it’s definitely a battle to find recruits.”
Galatioto said her returning players have shown improvement just in the short spring practice time.
“Some who didn’t play field hockey in high school, they’re the ones who’ve improved the most because they never had the consistency from year to year. But I think the whole team and myself are all on the same page going forward,” Galatioto said.
Galatioto mentioned several Rochester-area coaches as having helped her along the way, but said the more-important people were in or closer to this area.
“The reason I’m a college coach is because of Tammy Landon, my coach at Castleton,” Galatioto said. “If it weren’t for her support and the support of my family, I’d never be where I am right now.”