GENEVA — The Geneva High boys lacrosse team has had a solid season thus far. The Panthers have posted a 12-4 record, highlighted by a Finger Lakes league championship, and have been preparing for their Section V Class C tournament opener against Honeoye Falls-Lima at Canandaigua Academy this afternoon.
However, the Panthers are forging into the postseason without their longtime head coach, LJ Russell.
The Geneva city school district has placed Russell and assistant coach Brian Travis on administrative leave.
“Due to personnel reasons I can’t make any comments,” Geneva superintendent Trina Newton said Thursday when asked why Russell and Travis have been placed on administrative leave. “We’re taking our time and being thorough during this investigation.”
Russell, who owns a 194-93 career record in 15 seasons as head coach, also declined to comment, citing legal reasons.
Multiple sources have suggested the school district’s action may have something to do with concussion protocol, but the Times has been unable to confirm that information.
Jeff Dunham has been appointed interim head coach. Mike Rice is serving as his assistant.
“Both are great coaches within the lacrosse community,” Newton said. “I’m extremely grateful for Coach Dunham and Coach Rice.”
“The young men have been focused on the sectional game,” Newton continued. “We’re moving in the right direction; they’ve been disciplined all season. I hope the community comes out and supports the team today out in Canandaigua.”