First-year head coach Peter Toner has announced his first official addition to the men’s lacrosse coaching staff with former Mount St. Mary’s University assistant coach Erik Holt joining the program this fall.
Holt rose to the top of a pool of talented candidates that included representatives from several levels of lacrosse, including all three divisions of the NCAA. Holt will team up with Toner to establish a new identity for the program following the retirement of one of the most successful lacrosse coaches in college history, Hank Janczyk, in May.
“When we looked at the pool of candidates, Erik’s wealth of experience and knowledge as a lacrosse coach really separated him from the start,” said Toner. “He is extremely professional, works very hard, prepares very well and is passionate about developing relationships with our players. I think it will fit in perfectly with the culture that we will continue to develop as this new staff continues to come together. “
Holt has spent the last three seasons at The Mount, as a senior assistant and defensive coordinator in 2019 and as a recruiting coordinator and faceoff and goaltending coach for the past two seasons. While in Emmitsburg, Md., He helped the defensive unit reach the top 20 in Division I and the team won the Northeast Conference regular season championship in 2019.
“I’m very excited to join the men’s lacrosse program at Gettysburg,” said Holt. “It’s a great opportunity to work with Coach Toner, someone I respect and from whom I can continue to learn and grow. The team is a motivated and talented bunch that I’m really excited to work with and help them make their trip a success. There is a legacy of success established by Coach Janczyk, and I look forward to making an impact as we continue to build on that tradition.
Holt brings a wealth of lacrosse experience to the table as a coach and administrator. He was the founder and director of Lionheart Enterprises, Inc., from 2012-19, creating a recruiting event that started with seven teams to over 60 teams in six years. During this time he also served as an assistant coach and head coach at St. James School in Hagerstown, MD from 2016 to 2018 and worked with US Indoor Lacrosse, first as an assistant coach with the U-19 team in 2015 before becoming vice president of operations in 2016. Holt was also director of lacrosse operations at Mount St. Mary’s from 2011 to 2012. From 2006 to 2009 he was an assistant high school coach Urbana where he helped the team reach three state championship games. Holt was named U.S. Assistant Lacrosse Coach of the Year in 2007.
A Penn State graduate in 2002, Holt played both lacrosse and football for the Nittany Lions. He went on to compete in professional lacrosse for the Charlotte Copperheads (2011-12) and Philadelphia Wings (2012-13). Holt was also captain of the US indoor development team from 2009 to 2013 and represented the US team at the BowHunter Cup in 2013.
Holt, an economics graduate from Penn State’s Smeal School of Business, has served as chairman of a financial firm, The Holt Advisory Group, since 2008. In this role, he serves as a personal financial coach for businesses and families.
Holt will team up with Toner to bring Gettysburg into a new era. Janczyk retired in May after scoring the second most wins in NCAA history (477) and leading the Bullets to 26 NCAA Division III playoff appearances and 19 conference titles. Holt’s experience in the lacrosse world gives the new head coach a lot of flexibility as he looks to continue building on the strong lacrosse tradition at Gettysburg.
“I see Erik taking control of the attacking end of the ball,” Toner noted. “He has a lot of experience doing it and is very keen to take the reins. He also has experience teaching faceoffs and teaching goalies, so he can certainly help there as well. Ultimately we want our staff and team to believe in the same vision, mission, values and culture and I know he will be a tremendous asset in all of these areas as we move forward and build on an incredibly strong foundation.