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Coach BJ O'Hara

Coach BJ O'Hara

B.J. O'Hara

Rochester Rattlers Head Coach

B.J. O’Hara enters his fifth season as the head coach of the Rochester Rattlers. Last season, he guided the Rattlers to a second-place finish in the Eastern Conference with a 9-3 record. The nine wins set a single-season franchise record as Rochester qualified for the playoffs for the third time in four seasons under O’Hara. The 2007 season also included a team record eight straight wins as O’Hara improved his all-time record to 27-21. Last season, O’Hara became the team’s all-time winningest coach, passing Guy Van Arsdale (19 wins).

In 2006, he led the Rattlers into their inaugural season at 12,500-seat PAETEC Park. The team finished 5-7 in the very competitive National Division and missed the playoffs for the first time in three seasons. In 2005, O’Hara made history by becoming the first coach in Major League Lacrosse history to guide an 0-5 team into the playoffs. The Rattlers won six of their last seven games and tied a team record with five straight wins to finish 6-6. The postseason berth was the second straight for Rochester, another team record. Earlier in the year, he led the Young Gun All-Star Team to a 21-20 overtime victory in the 2005 MLL Wild West All-Star Showdown at INVESCO Field at Mile High.

In 2004, B.J. O'Hara had quite a first season in the MLL. He guided the Rochester Rattlers to their first National Division title and took the Rattlers (7-5) to the postseason for only the second time in team history.

O'Hara took over the head coaching reins from Guy Van Arsdale in 2003, following Van Arsdale’s move to Division I Notre Dame. The opportunity allowed O'Hara to return to his roots as a head coach, where he enjoyed success at the Division III and Division I levels. He made his Rochester Rattlers and MLL debut on May 22, 2004 against Baltimore in a 24-18 loss at Seattle. The following week, however, he rebounded with his first professional win on May 29th against the Philadelphia Barrage. He picked up his first road win on June 13th at Baltimore against the Bayhawks.

Before joining the Rattlers, O'Hara was a volunteer assistant coach at Division I Syracuse University (2002-03). In 2002, he was on the staff of the NCAA Division I National Championship team. The title was the ninth of his collegiate coaching career.

O'Hara began his coaching career in 1976 as an assistant coach at West Genesee High School. He moved on to the college ranks as an assistant coach at North Carolina State during the 1978-79 season. In 1980, he earned his first head lacrosse coaching job at Alfred University. In 1981, O'Hara accepted the assistant coaching job at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI), before heading back to his alma mater, Hobart, to serve as an assistant coach from 1982-86. As an assistant with the Statesmen, Hobart won five of 12 straight NCAA Division III titles.

He took over the Hobart program in 1990 and enjoyed unparalleled success until his departure in 2001, compiling a 97-63 overall record. He also was instrumental in taking the program from the Division III to the Division I level. He led the Statesmen to three NCAA Division III Championships (1990, 1991 and 1993), the program's first-ever NCAA Division I Tournament berth in 1998, and the Patriot League Championship and NCAA Tournament in 2000. For his efforts at the college in Geneva, NY, O'Hara was inducted into the Upstate New York Lacrosse Foundation Hall of Fame in 1995 and the Hobart College Hall of Fame in 1998.

As a player, O'Hara played at Hobart from 1972-75 and twice earned All-American honors. In his senior season, he was co-captain, a First Team USILA All-American and was selected to play in the North-South Senior All-Star Game. In 1974, he was a Third Team USILA All-American and helped the Statesmen to the NCAA Division II-III championship game. In addition, he played on the 1972 USILA College Division championship squad. O'Hara finished his Hobart career ranked second on the all-time scoring list with 280 points (163+117). He held the career record for goals until 1991.

Personal: Married: wife, Jean, and has two sons: Connor and Liam… The family resides in Skaneatele