Director of Athletics Seth Eilberg recently announced three major coaching changes at the varsity level that will take effect in the 2012-13 school year. Girls’ ice hockey coach Justin Cerenzia, boys’ lacrosse coach Ned Ide, and softball coach Tom Johnson have stepped down from their roles and will be replaced by Ari Baum, Erik Mortensen, and Julie deLaurentis, respectively.
“We are incredibly grateful for the tremendous service that Ned, Justin, and Tom have given to their respective sports,” said Eilberg. “Ned has continued the strong legacy of our lacrosse program, and Erik’s extensive lacrosse background has him well-suited to continue that legacy. Justin and Tom have done a lot of good work to build strong foundations for girls’ ice hockey and softball, and they are handing their programs to young, energetic coaches in Ari and Julie who are eager to see their teams excel.”
Details of each coaching change are below:
Girls' ice hockey
Recently hired Ari Baum will replace Justin Cerenzia as the head coach of the varsity girls' ice hockey team. Baum will join The Hill’s history department as an instructor of economics. After graduating from Cornell University in 2007, he returned to his high school alma mater, The Gunnery (Washington, Conn.), where he was an assistant coach for the perennial New England power varsity boys’ hockey team. He also served as the associate athletics director and coached in the girls’ tennis program. He recently earned his master’s degree from Columbia University’s Klingenstein Center for Independent School Leadership.
Cerenzia arrived at The Hill as an assistant boys' hockey coach in 2004 and joined the faculty full-time in 2006 in the Admission Office before settling in to the history department as an instructor of U.S. History and AP Government. He took over the girls’ hockey program in 2010, a capacity in which he served for two seasons. A 2001 graduate of St. George’s School in Newport, R.I., Cerenzia will return to his alma mater, where he will be the head coach of the varsity boys’ hockey team and continue teaching history.
Erik Mortensen and Ned Ide will switch roles for the 2013 lacrosse season. Mortensen, who was an assistant in 2012, was named the interim head coach after Ide announced he would be stepping down at the conclusion of this past season.
Mortensen joined The Hill faculty in the fall of 2011 as an instructor of English and an assistant lacrosse coach. This past season, he was responsible for running the offense and the extra-man unit. He has an extensive lacrosse background, having played high school lacrosse at Tabor Academy (Mass.) and college lacrosse at Division III Colby College of the NESCAC. He then moved on to play post-collegiately for club teams in Virginia, Rhode Island, and Connecticut, including a stint with the Connecticut Yankees of the American Lacrosse League. His extensive coaching background includes work as an assistant coach at Blue Ridge School (Va.) and Rye Country Day School (N.Y.); and as the head coach for Portsmouth Abbey School (R.I.), New York University, and most recently at King Low Heywood Thomas School (Conn.), where he also directed the Vikings Lacrosse Camp.
Ide succeeded the legendary Harry Price as the team’s head coach in 2001, which was his first year at The Hill. In 2010, he guided the team to its first win over Lawrenceville since 1988 and the only MAPL championship in program history. He was named the 2010 Philly Lacrosse “Coach of the Year.”
After three years at the helm, Tom Johnson has turned the softball team over to Julie deLaurentis. Currently the School’s assistant athletic director and head field hockey coach, deLaurentis brings a wealth of athletic leadership experience and knowledge of MAPL softball to the table. A 2005 graduate of The Peddie School, she was a four-year member of the varsity softball team, and in her junior and senior years was a team captain and earned all-area and all-prep team selection. Throughout her years as a Falcon, she split her playing time between both the infield and outfield, but spent most of her time at the hot corner of third base. In her senior season, she dramatically ended her playing career with a walk-off, three-run double that gave Peddie the MAPL Championship and a State title. She joined Hill’s softball coaching staff for the 2012 season, serving as both an assistant with the varsity team and as the head of the JV program.
Johnson took over the team in 2010. Throughout the past three seasons, he took a group of very young players and developed them into a competitive team that will feature numerous three and four-year letter winners next season. The 2012 team posted a strong record against regional competition, earning the fourth seed and a first round bye in the PAISAA State Tournament. Johnson, who also is the head girls’ water polo coach, announced that he would be stepping down following the conclusion of the 2012 season due to his increased responsibilities as the Dean of Faculty.