Football assistant will lead Wilkes women’s golf team

Jonathan Keer, Staff Writer

Harry Armstrong will be the first head coach for the university’s new sports program.

Wilkes University will add two new women’s programs to its athletics roster this fall — golf and swimming — and heading the new golf team will be current assistant football coach, Harry Armstrong.

The idea to have a woman’s golf team came from Dr. Patrick Leahy in an initiative to grow the school’s enrollment, improve its athletic programs and offer more to attract student athletes.

Armstrong was seen as a top candidate for the position, after a school sponsored fundraising golf tournament, three years ago where he gave tips to Wilkes University Athletic Director, Adelene Malatesta. When the job was created, Armstrong was given the first crack at the job.

Starting a new team can be difficult, but Armstrong has a set plan to how he wants to build his program.

“I think the biggest key to making a new program successful is the recruiting efforts and it’s all about bringing in the right student athletes that will fit into Wilkes that will be motivated,” the new coach said.  “That can really set the foundation for future success and this first class is really going to the pillars for the future of this program.”

Armstrong has held a nationwide recruiting search to find what he needs.  His two top recruits, Alivia Behnfeldt and Katie Carney, come from Indiana and California.

In the first year, Armstrong said he expects to build chemistry and trust between his players.  He wants them to succeed on the golf course and demonstrate that they can be a respectable team that competes with all their opponents.

Wilkes will hold its matches at the Huntsville Country Club in Dallas, Pa.