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Swarm rewards coaching staff with extensions through 2014

08/16/2012, 12:45pm EDT
By NLL.com

Joe Sullivan and staff extended following successful 2012 season

The Minnesota Swarm have signed head coach Joe Sullivan and his staff to extensions through the 2014 season. Photo Credit: Larry Palumbo

The Minnesota Swarm announced that the team has re-signed its entire coaching staff to two-year agreements.

Joe Sullivan – the 2012 NLL Head Coach of the Year – will lead the Swarm’s bench for the next two seasons and will be joined by assistant coachesAime Caines and Bobby Keast. Minnesota also inked a two-year agreement with its Director of Western Scouting, Jake Elliott.

Predicted by many experts to win only a few games in 2012, the Swarm finished the regular season 9-7 and advanced to the West Division Finals for the first time in team history. Impressively, Minnesota accomplished all of that while featuring new systems on both offense and defense and fielding 16 new faces on its roster, including a league-high 12 rookies.

“This coaching staff did a wonderful job of integrating a lot of new players in a short amount of time and they finished with the best record since we’ve owned the team,” Owner and PresidentJohn Arlotta said. “The record speaks for itself in terms of performance and I’m happy to have them all back and ready to go for next year.”

Sullivan, 43, will enter his first full season as the Swarm’s head coach in 2013 after taking over the position six games into the 2012 campaign. Last season, Sullivan led Minnesota to four straight wins to close out the regular season and helped the Swarm record their first ever playoff victory with a 14-10 win on the road against Colorado in the West Divisional Semifinals. Sullivan also serves as the Swarm’s associate general manager.

“I couldn't be happier,” Sullivan said. “We have coaches that have bonded well with our players and we’ve grown together now over the past year. We talk about family in Minnesota; these two guys that I’m working with every single day exemplify just that. I couldn't be more excited to be working with Bobby and Aime and then more importantly just working with the entire staff that doesn’t get mentioned a whole heck of a lot because they’re all a big part of our success.”

Caines, 36, will enter his fourth season as an assistant coach with the Swarm this upcoming season. Before coaching, Caines spent five seasons (2001-05) in the NLL and tallied 110 points (52g, 58a) and 206 loose balls with Columbus, Montreal and Buffalo. In addition to his assistant coaching duties, Caines is active in the local lacrosse community in his roles as the Swarm’s Youth Box League Director and as the head coach of the Prairie Island Indian Community lacrosse program.

Keast, 43, finished his first season as an assistant coach with the Swarm in 2012 and was responsible for directing Minnesota’s offense.

Elliott, 39, completed his first season as the Swarm’s Director of Western Scouting in 2012. The native of Coquitlam, B.C. was the recipient of the 2012 NLL Media Person of the Year award following his first full season as the play-by-play voice of the Swarm’s Channel 45 broadcasts.

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