Published : Friday, January 26, 2018 | 12:05 PM
Ingrid Herskind, the longest-tenured coach on the Flintridge Prep coaching staff, announced to the boys cross country team that she will stepping away from cross country beginning in the fall. Herskind, whose winning record is legendary across California and the country, will continue to coach girls and boys swimming and remains a vital member of the school’s history faculty. The Flintridge Prep administration named her the school’s Global Studies Coordinator in 2017.
Assistant coach Scott Jung, who is also the school’s head varsity track and field coach, will take over as the head coach of cross country. Eric Kleinsasser, a member of the Prep science faculty, will remain in his assistant coaching position.
“I have always talked to the guys about taking risks and challenging themselves—and I feel that I am ready to take on new challenges both professionally and personally,” said Herskind. “It’s never an easy time to step down, but I know that I am leaving the team in great hands with head coach Scott Jung and assistant coach Eric Kleinsasser. We have built an amazing running climate, and I am proud to have worked with these young men over the past 21 years. I can’t wait to see them take on new challenges.”
Garrett Ohara, Flintridge Prep’s Director of Athletics, says, “Ingrid’s record speaks for itself, and apart from the myriad titles and accomplishments, her impact upon the individuals cannot be understated or overlooked. She is a coach who truly values the process over the end product, and her influence extended throughout the state.
“We are thrilled to have Scott take over,” Ohara added. “He is eager to carry on the tradition of excellence while bringing his unique personality as the successor. He has gained the respect of the team during his tenure as an assistant coach.”
Herskind is a rarity in boys cross country coaching, being one of just a few female coaches. She began her coaching career at Flintridge Prep in 1997 and is one of the winningest coaches in school history. With over 21 straight years of top 4 or higher finishes at the California state meeting and 5 state team championships, she has also coached several athletes to individual state meet wins, All-American status (with Alan Yoho ’14 and Jack Van Scoter ’16 running in both the Footlocker National Championship and the Nike National Championship) and college cross country careers. Her 2015 team recorded the third-lowest team score in Division V history and established the fastest team time in division history.
In 2015, she was the inaugural recipient of the Scott Studenmund ’08 Memorial Award, which honors Prep coaches who promote the passions that Scott embodied. At that time, Headmaster Peter Bachmann noted Herskind’s incredible talents, saying, “Her real genius as a coach is as a champion of human development, with her deep understanding of the individual needs of each athlete. She wants to win, but she insists upon good character.”
Highly disciplined and passionate, Herskind prodigiously pursues professional development opportunities, often using her international studies to develop new curriculum. This made her a natural fit to helm the school’s burgeoning global studies initiative.
Coach Herskind’s Flintridge Prep Coaching Career by the Numbers
Ingrid Herskind began coaching at Prep in 1997, and has 25 total years coaching. Prior to beginning her career at Prep, she coached at the Randolph School in Huntsville, Alabama, where she successfully coached both the indoor and outdoor track teams to state championships.
Flintridge Preparatory School, 4543 Crown Ave., La Cañada Flintridge, (818) 790-1178 or visit www.flintridgeprep.org.