Frassinelli reflects on 28 year career

Avery Martin – Contributor

Kelley Frassinelli has been the head  coach of field hockey  for over 25 years. This momentous accomplishment  has made her recognized in her sport and by the university. She has been featured in Sports Illustrated and was inducted into the university’s  Athletics Hall of Fame. However, Frassinelli’s best reward has been hearing from alumni about how she impacted their lives. 

“I will say that to me the biggest recognition is knowing that the alumni are doing so well, staying connected, and value what they got from this program. To me, that is the best recognition and the best way to advertise who we are and what Southern is about,” Frassinelli said.  

Frassinelli started playing field hockey around fifth grade. “I played through middle school and high school. Then I went on to play at Southern. I just felt Southern Connecticut offered me athletically and academically what I was looking for,” said Frassinelli. 

Coming back to coach here  has been an honor for Frasinelli, who said “It is amazing. Being a player here you have certain connections and people you know, but now I get to be a colleague of those individuals who were mentors to me and helped me a lot.” 

Frassinelli takes an all-encompassing approach to coaching. Her players say she takes time to check on athletes individually, prioritizes their mental health, gives advice and encourages them to be the best versions of themselves. 

 It is something Center Midfielder and Biology Major Tori Geaglone, a senior , appreciates. “She knows the potential that I have and she knows that I am very committed,” said Geaglone.  

Forward and Nursing Major Brianna Caffrey, a junior,  agrees. “She will pull me aside and tell me the little things that I need to work on and focus on as a player,” Caffrey said. Geaglone and Caffrey also mention that Frassinelli frequently incorporates life lessons into her coaching. 

“Not only is she teaching us how to play, but there are little life lessons she throws into things. She correlates it back to life. She will say that not only do you have to be on time for practice, but if you have a job you have to be on time for your job too.” Caffrey said. 

Both Geaglone and Caffrey said that Frassinelli helps the team feel like a family environment.  

 Geaglone said, “In the team itself, we are very close. We do things together like we have pasta dinners and go out to eat together. We all have good relationships with the coaches as well and I fell we are able to talk with them as people and not only as coaches.”  

Geaglone and Caffrey believe that Frassinelli’s coaching style is instrumental in their team’s successes. Frassinelli hopes this coaching style will steer the Owls to the playoffs this year. With a 4-8 record as of October 21st, the team is primarily concentrating on working hard and putting their best foot forward for each game in what Frassinelli describes as a “full-field game.” 

Frassinelli demonstrates her selfless character when she makes sure to assert that the team’s accomplishments do not owe only to her. She said, “I’m also not where I am without the people that surround me.”  

The  field hockey team has six more regular season games remaining, and Coach Kelley Frassinelli hopes to lead the team to more wins.  

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