Dunne Named Assistant Women's Basketball Coach
BALTIMORE - Loyola University Maryland head women's basketball coach Joe Logan announced that Melissa Dunne will join the program as an assistant coach for the upcoming 2016-17 season.
"We're extremely excited to welcome Melissa to the Greyhounds family," Logan said. "I've known Melissa since her playing days at Temple under Dawn Staley, and since then, she's been a part of some amazing programs as both a player and a coach. Melissa has won at every level along the way and will be an outstanding mentor to the young women on our team."
"Loyola is a phenomenal institution that provides student-athletes with a remarkable experience to achieve greatness in the classroom, on the court and most importantly, upon graduating," Dunne said. "The Patriot League has always impressed me because of the dedication and commitment to the student-athlete. I'm extremely excited for this opportunity to help Loyola in its journey to remain a dominant force in the conference and ultimately win a Patriot League title."
At Loyola, Dunne will join a program that's coming off its first-ever appearance in the Patriot League Tournament. The Greyhounds put together their finest season since 2010-11, as they won a school-record 11 Patriot League games and earned the No. 3 seed in the conference championship. Loyola's third-place regular-season finish is tied for the biggest turnaround from a previous season for any Patriot League team in League history. After finishing last year in ninth place with a 5-13 record in League play, the Greyhounds improved six spots, finishing third in 2016, with an 11-7 record.
"Joe Logan is a charismatic leader who understands the demands of a Loyola student," Dunne said. "He has instilled a culture of pride and teamwork in his program. After two historically successful seasons at George Washington, I am confident that I can contribute greatly to helping this program achieve its goals."
While at George Washington, the Colonials went 29-4 in 2014-15, setting a program record for wins and winning percentage in a single season. George Washington went on to win the Atlantic 10 regular-season and tournament titles, earning its first berth to the NCAA Tournament since 2008.
George Washington returned to the postseason in 2015-16, going 26-7 and earning a share of the A-10 regular-season title. Dunne and the Colonials won their second-straight conference tournament championship and once again advanced to the NCAA Tournament.
Dunne began her coaching career as a graduate assistant at Drexel in 2002. She quickly worked her way up the ranks before leaving Philadelphia to serve as an assistant coach at Rhode Island for the 2006-07 season.
Dunne returned to Drexel the following year as the squad's recruiting coordinator, guiding the Dragons to an 8.5-game improvement from the previous season. Drexel jumped from 10th to third in the Colonial Athletic Association and in 2008-09, the Dragons claimed their first CAA regular-season and tournament titles. Drexel went on to make back-to-back CAA Championship title game, while also appearing in a program-record five-straight postseason showings from 2009-13, including winning the 2013 Women's National Invitation Tournament.
Dunne worked with Drexel's backcourt and helped the Dragons' become one of the strongest ball-handling units in NCAA Division I women's basketball. From 2005-11, Drexel ranked among the top three in the CAA in assist-to-turnover ratio, including back-to-back No. 1 rankings in 2010 and 2011. The Dragons also led the CAA in 2013 and were ranked among the top 35 in the NCAA in the same category every year under Dunne's tutelage.
Dunne also worked on defensive concepts and execution at Drexel, overseeing a team that allowed only 55.8 points per game in 2013-14, which ranked ninth among NCAA Division I programs. The previous year, the Dragons ranked eighth in the NCAA in scoring defense, allowing just 51.4 points per contest.
A four-year letter winner at Temple, Dunne helped turnaround an Owls' program under Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Famer and three-time Olympian Dawn Staley. After being named the team's most improved player as a sophomore, Dunne helped turn the program around in Staley's first season at the helm, as the Owls turned in the program's first winning record in more than 10 years and earned a bid to the WNIT. As a senior, Dunne captained the 2002 squad to Temple's third 20-win season in school history, while she also led the Owls to their first A-10 Title, the Big 5 crown and their first NCAA Tournament appearance since the 1988-89 season.
Dunne earned her bachelor's degree in journalism, broadcasting and public relations at Temple in 2002 and her master's degree in public communication from Drexel in 2006.