Elaine Schwager begins the third year of her second stint as head coach of the softball team in the 2016-17 season. She also is in her second year serving as Director of Club Sports at Merrimack College and was promoted to full-time status in the summer of 2015.
In 2016, Schwager would guide the Warriors to a return to the Northeast-10 Conference Championship, clinching a berth by posting three wins on the final day of the season. After a tough stretch against some very stiff competition to end March, the Warriors would go 9-1 over there next 10 games and post an 18-7 record in April to advance to the conference tournament.
Merrimack finished 2016 with a 24-26 record, including 14-13 in NE-10 play, while Schwager saw Haley Currie selected to the NE-10 All-Conference and NFCA All-East Region First Teams. Schwager also helped a pair of freshman make the NE-10 All-Rookie Team.
The former Warrior head coach returned to campus for a second stint in 2015 and guided a young squad to the cusp of a playoff berth. Merrimack finished with seven wins in its last 11 games and posted its first win over a ranked opponent (#18 Southern N.H.) since the 2011 campaign, which was coincidentally Schwager's final year during her first tenure at Merrimack. The Warriors missed out on a playoff berth in the 2015 NE-10 Championship by a single game in the highly competitive Northeast Division.
Overall, Merrimack finished 19-24 in 2015, while Schwager helped two student-athletes earn all-conference recognition.
Schwager enjoyed a successful six-year run with the program from 2006-11 and was named the 2009 Northeast-10 Conference Coach of the Year after guiding her squad to a 17-win improvement and a 26-19 overall record.
In 2011, Merrimack enjoyed its best season in eight years, finishing 31-23 overall while reaching the Northeast-10 Championship and the NCAA Super Regionals after capturing the NCAA East Region 1 Championship.
Schwager also guided Merrimack to an appearance in the NE-10 Championship Final in 2007 and helped the team reach the double-elimination championship weekend round in 2009.
In 15 years of coaching, Schwager has amassed a 291-305 record. She notched her 200th career victory in 2009 against Southern New Hampshire.
Prior to Merrimack, Schwager was the head softball coach at Suffolk University for six seasons while also serving as the Associate Athletic Director and head volleyball coach. She led the softball team to two ECAC New England postseason tournaments while coaching one of the most prolific base stealers in NCAA history as well as the program's most decorated pitcher. She was also twice named the GNAC Coach of the Year in both 2003 and 2005.
Schwager graduated from Boston Unviersity where she was a member of the softball team. She landed her first softball coaching stint in her first postgraduate year, joining the UMass Lowell coaching staff as an assistant. After two years in Lowell, Schwager returned to BU to join its staff as a graduate assistant, where she remained for a season.
Following her year at BU, Schwager landed her first head coaching gig at Regis College, where she posted 25 wins across two seasons. While at Regis, Schwager also served as the head coach for the Croation National Team for two years before joining Suffolk.
A Salem, New Hampshire native, Schwager was inducted into the Salem High School Hall of Fame in 2001. She currently resides in North Andover with her wife, Heather, her daughter Peyton and their newborn son, Blake.