GORHAM, Maine -- The University of Southern Maine Athletic Department announced today the appointment of Jim Karcanes as the interim head coach for the women's cross country program for the upcoming 2019 fall campaign.
The Huskies open their preseason training on Monday, August 19, and will race for the first time under Karcanes on Friday, August 30, hosting their annual Alumni Meet. Karcanes is expecting approximately 20 athletes, including 14 returning from last season's squad, for preseason.
Karcanes spent the 2018-19 indoor and outdoor track and field seasons as an assistant coach with the Huskies. A two-time North Atlantic Conference (NAC) Women's Cross Country Coach of the Year while at Husson University, Karcanes began the Eagles women's cross country program in 2010.
"We're very fortunate to have Jim Karcanes available to step in and lead our women's cross country team this fall," commented USM Director of Athletics Al Bean. "Jim is an experienced coach, an outstanding leader, and worked with our student-athletes as a member of our women's track coaching staff last year. I have great confidence that he will do an outstanding job directing the program and will provide an exceptional student-athlete experience for our women's cross country team members".
A retired lieutenant colonel after a 21-year career in the United States Army, Karcanes received two Bronze Stars for his combat tours in Iraq. He received his bachelor's degree in Psychology from Houghton (N.Y.) College in 1994, and holds master's degrees from the Naval War College (2007, National Security and Strategic Studies), the University of Maine (2013, Kinesiology and Physical Education) and Syracuse University (2019, Business Administration).
Karcanes ran cross country and track and field during his two years at the University of South Carolina before transferring to Houghton. He received All-Metro honors in cross country in 1990 while at USC. He also qualified for the Boston Marathon in 2010, and was the master's division champion at the Bangor Labor Day 5-Miler in 2011.