April 9, 2012
PROVIDENCE, R.I. -
Providence College Athletics Director Bob Driscoll announced today (April 9) that Susan Robinson Fruchtl has been named head women's basketball coach. Robinson Fruchtl becomes the ninth head coach in the program's 38-year history, and replaces Phil Seymore, who resigned in March to pursue other options.
"We are thrilled to introduce Susan as the ninth women's basketball coach at Providence College," Driscoll said. "She has demonstrated a high level of success as a coach, a player and in the classroom at a variety of levels. Susan is a winner. Her commitment to academics and passion for coaching the game of basketball makes her a great fit to lead our student-athletes and our women's basketball program to the next level."
Robinson Fruchtl will be formally introduced at a news conference on Wednesday, April 11 at 2:00 p.m. The press conference will take place in the College's Concannon Fitness Center conference room (second floor). The news conference is open to all Providence College fans and the media. The doors to the Concannon Fitness Center conference room will open at 1:30 p.m. for fans and media.
"I am humbled and thrilled to become the next head women's basketball coach at Providence College," Robinson Fruchtl said. "I truly believe that it is a great fit for me and for Providence. Having played at a very high level, I am excited to be able to recruit and work with student-athletes, who will hopefully share some of the same goals that I had as a player. I am very proud to represent the Providence Friars and we will work hard to get the word out about Providence women's basketball. It is an awesome opportunity to build a program and coach in the BIG EAST. It is one of the premier conferences in the nation, and it will present a serious challenge every night we step on the court. I will strive to get student-athletes who will love Providence and who will make people proud to come watch them. We want to reach out to alumni, players and fans in the greater Providence area to let them know that Friartown is heading in a positive direction. I want to thank Father Shanley, Bob Driscoll and Jill LaPoint for sharing their vision clearly and giving me the opportunity to lead this program into the future. I look forward to working with everyone at Providence College in making our program grow."
Robinson Fruchtl comes to Providence College after spending the last five seasons at St. Francis University (Pa.) from 2007-12. She guided the Red Flash to three-consecutive Northeast Conference Championship Games, captured two conference titles and advanced to the NCAA Tournament in 2010 and 2011.
She garnered Northeast Conference Coach of the Year honors at the completion of the 2011 campaign after leading St. Francis to a 22-11 overall record and a 14-4 mark in the NEC. That same year, the Red Flash won the NEC regular-season title and the tournament title. The team's 22 victories in 2011 are tied for third-most in program history.
During Robinson Fruchtl's tenure, a member of the Red Flash earned All-NEC honors six times and two others were selected to the NEC All-Rookie Team.
Robinson Fruchtl spent eight seasons as an assistant coach at Penn State University (1993-98, 2004-07). The 1992 Penn State graduate helped guide her alma mater to a 161-83 record (.660) during her eight seasons, including four, 20-win seasons.
A former All-America selection and Penn State's only recipient of the Wade Trophy, which is presented annually to the best women's college basketball player in NCAA Division I, Robinson Fruchtl rejoined the Penn State staff in May of 2004 after serving as an assistant from 1993 to 1998. During her time at Penn State, she worked primarily with post players and assisted with the recruitment of student-athletes. It was under her guidance that former Nittany Lion Amanda Brown became a third-round selection in the 2007 WNBA draft by the Los Angeles Sparks.
After leaving the Penn State in 1998, Robinson Fruchtl enrolled at Slippery Rock University to pursue her Master's degree in secondary guidance. During that time she served as a volunteer assistant from 1998-2000 for the North Allegheny girls' basketball team. Robinson Fruchtl also has a Master's in higher education, which she earned from PSU in 1998.
In June of 2000, she took over as the head girls' basketball coach at Beaver Area High School, where she also worked as one of the school's guidance counselors. She helped revive the basketball program, and led the Cats to the PIAA Class AAA Playoffs in each of her final two seasons.
Then known as Susan Robinson, she graduated from Penn State with a B.S. in exercise and sports science in 1992 and was married to Tony Fruchtl in 1997. Robinson Fruchtl is one of only two players in Penn State history to accumulate 2,000 points and 1,000 rebounds, and was the program's all-time leading scorer with 2,253 points until she was passed by Kelly Mazzante in 2004.
In 1992, the same season she won the Wade Trophy, she was named a consensus All-American and earned GTE/CoSIDA Academic All-America honors. As a rookie in 1989, she was named Atlantic 10 Freshman of the Year. Twice she was named to the All-Atlantic 10 Conference team, and in 1991, she was tabbed Player of the Year. The Center Point, West Virginia native served as captain of the 1990-91 PSU squad that compiled a 29-2 record and a No. 1 National ranking in the final AP poll of the regular season.
In 1990, Robinson Fruchtl was a member of the Junior National Team, and also played for the U.S. Select team that toured Europe. Following her collegiate career she played professionally for one season in Japan.
"I am very pleased to welcome Susan Robinson Fruchtl to Providence College as our new head women's basketball coach," Providence College President, Reverend Brian J. Shanley, O.P. said. "Susan was an accomplished basketball player herself while in college, earning All-America honors at Penn State University. Since then, she has compiled an outstanding record of achievement, first as a high school coach, then as an assistant at her alma mater and, most recently, as the head coach for the last several years at St. Francis University. We are delighted to welcome her to the Providence College community and look forward to her leadership of our women's basketball program."
FOR TRANSACTIONS: Susan Robinson Fruchtl named head women's basketball coach at Providence College.