Longtime women’s college basketball coach Cathy Inglese, who was hired by Hofstra as associate head coach earlier this summer, died after suffering a traumatic brain injury in a fall.
The 60-year-old, who was head coach at Boston College from 1993 through 2008 - making the NCAA Sweet 16 three times - was hired by Hofstra in June.
Hofstra announced her death on Wednesday, July 24, a week after the fall.
“Our hearts are hurting with the passing of Cathy,” Hofstra women’s basketball coach Danielle Santos Atkinson stated. “Cathy was one of the kindest and nicest people I have come to know in the coaching industry and in her short time with our program she left an indelible mark.
"Our entire program and the Hofstra family are heartbroken that she has passed but her memory will continue to influence our program every day we step on the court. Please join us in sending our thoughts and prayers to her family. Cathy lived a wonderful life and personally, I am honored to have been able to call her a friend, colleague, co-worker, and mentor.”
A Connecticut native, Inglese won a state title as a junior at Sheehan High School in 1976 and later became a double-digit scorer in each of her four seasons at Southern Connecticut State.
Inglese’s career began at Glastonbury High School.
Before her time at Boston College, she was a head coach at Vermont, where her teams had back-to-back undefeated seasons. She was also a coach at Rhode Island and Farleigh Dickinson during her career before heading to Hofstra.
“We will miss Cathy soooo much,” Inglese’s sister Nancy wrote on social media, adding that her note was on behalf of the entire Inglese family. “Our thanks go out to everyone for their unbelievable love and support. Cathy’s legacy lives on!!”
After news of her death spread online, her former employers expressed their sorrow over her passing.
“We are thankful for the five years of memories, laughter and friendships we shared with Cathy,” @GoRhodyRams posted. “She really was one of a kind as she touched the lives of each and every person she encountered. Our deepest condolences go out to the Inglese family during this difficult time.”
“It’s such a sad day for our Boston College community with Cathy’s passing,” Martin Jarmon, Boston College’s director of athletics, said in a statement on the school’s website. “Cathy had a tremendously positive influence on the student-athletes she coached at BC and led our program to championship heights. Our thoughts and prayers go out to her family and friends.”
Hofstra Director of Athletics Rick Cole Jr., added, “the entire Hofstra community is devastated with the passing of Cathy. Cathy was an amazing person and coach and although part of our family for a short time she had already left a tremendous impact.
"Those who knew Cathy were touched by her kindness and generosity and her mark on the world of college athletics is immense. Our thoughts and prayers are with the Inglese family and we join everyone in mourning the passing of an incredible person who touched so many lives."
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