Castle Announces Lady Knights Senior Coaches for 2016-2017
announced September 13, 2016
Castle Athletics proudly announced today the coaching staff for their 17U-14U Lady Knights teams. Brian Rosen, President of Castle, said “we have been looking towards the development of the girls’ side of Castle for several years. While we have made progress, with this infusion of excellent and experienced coaching talent, the program will be on a par with the best programs in the country. We have brought in some of the finest coaches who are dedicated to the development of young women on an academic and athletic basis.”
Leading the senior team will be Mercedes Dukes and Tom Catalanotto. Coach Dukes played for Monsignor Scanlan High School (where she gained All-State honors and won a Federation title) and went on to star at St. John’s University and play internationally. She has been an assistant coach at Scanlan since 2012 under Coach Catalanotto, and has coached “AAU” teams including the Belles and the NY Heat. Coach Catalanotto brings over twenty years of high school coaching experience and dominance to the Castle program. As the former head coach of Archbishop Molloy, Coach Catalanotto won three Catholic championships and three Federation championships. Since 2012, Coach Tom has taken a then-struggling Scanlan Crusader team and lead them to the heights of the Catholic League, with this year moving into “AA” division. He has also lead numerous girls AAU programs. Rosen said that “we cannot be happier that Tom and Mercedes have joined the program. We have pursued them for several years because we have seen their commitment to the leadership of young women. Their addition will jumpstart the program.”
Coach Emilee Christopher is moving up the Castle ranks to take on the 16U team. For the past two years, Coach Christopher has lead the Castle 14U girls team. Emilee played collegiately at North Carolina A&T and was a standout scholastic player in North Carolina. She has a Masters Degree from Harvard University and has coached the Girls Prep Charter School squad for a number of years. Assisting Coach Christopher will be Percell Dugger. Coach Dugger, a former collegiate athlete is one of the foremost trainers in NYC. He and Coach Christopher have coached together for the past two years and their teamwork has helped form a tremendous foundation for the high school-aged girls teams.
Continuing with the 15U team will be Coach Roger Red Collier, the old lion of girls basketball in NYC. Coach Red has been with the Castle Lady Knights for several years and, each year, he has taken his teams to dizzying heights of success. He instills the fundamentals of team basketball while working on individual skills. Besides doing his miracle work for Castle, Coach Red leads the Aquinas squad in the Catholic League and is an Assistant Coach for the Hostos Community College Womens team.
Rounding out the Senior Division is Coach Jackee Meadow who will be leading the Girls’ 14U team. Rosen said that, “sometimes you just get lucky and, in this case, we discovered gold.” Coach Meadow has served as Athletic Director and Womens’ Head Coach at City College of New York, Womens’ Head Coach at Hunter College and, now, has taken over the reins at Kipp NYC to lead the girls’ high school team. Coach Meadow teaches numerous clinics and champions many charitable and educational causes.
While the 14U program will get underway shortly, the balance of the Senior Division will pick up following the high school season. The coaches have already been setting the 2016-2017 schedule and coordinating to further develop a unified program.
Players interested in participating on any of the Castle Lady Knights teams should watch the Castle website for details of the tryout schedule.