Monica Yeakel is the owner and director and a coach of Diamonds Lacrosse Club with over 25 years of coaching experience. She is a 2009 inductee into the US Lacrosse Hall of Fame, Greater Baltimore Chapter.
Yeakel, who was known during her playing days at Loyola College (now Loyola University) as Monica DiCandilo, earned IWLCA ALL-American First Team honors as a defender in 1994 and graduated from the college with a Bachelor of Arts in elementary education.
She was a four-year letterwinner and starter at Loyola, helping the Greyhounds to a 47-20 record and two NCAA Final Four appearances in 1990 and 1994. Monica was the only freshman that started every game on the 1990 team that went to the NCAA tournament.
After her days at Loyola, she continued her career as a member of the US Lacrosse Team from 1994-1996, and was an assistant coach at Loyola. In addition to being an assistant coach at Loyola, she was a full-time 3rd grade teacher in Baltimore City where she helped start a student-athlete mentor program with the athletes from Loyola.
After her two years as an assistant coach at Loyola and full time teacher, Coach Yeakel moved across town and became the head coach at UMBC in August of 1996. She held the leash for the Retrievers til 2005. During her tenure, Coach Yeakel took a team that finished 4-11 in 1996 and led them to the NEC Title two years later. She was twice named the Northeast Conference Coach of the Year. She guided the team to 5 Northeast Conference Titles, UMBC’s 1st NCAA Division 1 top 20 ranking, and their only 2 NCAA tournament appearances to date.
Yeakel is considered one of the best teachers in the game today. She has run numerous camps and clinics across the country and is often sought after by many programs for her expertise in breaking down the fundamentals as well as developing strategies for building a successful program.
Yeakel coaches each one of her Diamonds teams and she has done this since starting the program in 2010. She is at every practice and on the sideline at every tournament.
Monica and her husband, Chris, have been married for 15 years. They have two children: Luke (14) and Maxine (9). The Yeakels reside in Timonium.