Cassie Funke-Harris enters her seventh season at the helm of the Amherst College women’s cross country program in 2018. The first female head coach of a men's program in Amherst College history, it was announced in June that 2018 will also be Coach Funke-Harris' first season as the leader of the men's cross country program.
Posting fifth place finishes at the NESCAC Championships in each of the last two seasons, the Mammoths fielded some of the nation's top harriers under the guidance of Funke-Harris, with Katherine Treanor earning fifth at the league meet and 27th at the NCAA Championships in 2016 and Nicky Roberts '18 clinching the NESCAC individual crown and the Mammoths' best finish at the national meet (fifth) since 2012 in 2017.
Amherst College Announces Promotion for Cross Country Head Coach Cassie Funke-Harris
In a solid cross country campaign in 2015, the Mammoths posted four top-five finishes including a fourth place finish at the NESCAC Championships in which Lizzie Lacy ’19 captured first overall en route to earning Most Outstanding Performer and Rookie of the Year honors. Utilizing that momentum at the 56-team NCAA Northeast Regional, Funke-Harris guided Amherst to a seventh place finish with two runners capturing two of only seven spots given to individual harriers from the New England Region to compete at the NCAA Championships. Both runners would go on to place in the top-73 in the 280-woman field.
Funke-Harris also saw success in 2013 and 2014; posting 11-top five finishes in 18 races while guiding the Mammoths to an 8th and fourth place finish, respectively, at the NCAA Regionals. The 2014 squad placed 11th overall at the NCAA Championships under her leadership.
In an impressive first season at the helm of the cross country program in 2012, she led Amherst to a third-place finish at the NESCAC Championships and a fifth-place showing out of 51 teams at the NCAA Regionals. Helping to guide Amherst to a 10th-consecutive NCAA Championships appearance, the Mammoths placed 16th behind All-American Keri Lambert's '12 third-place finish.
Prior to her 2012 arrival, Funke-Harris spent six years as an assistant cross country and track & field coach at her alma mater, Carleton College. She was a four-year letter-winner for the Knights, notably earning an All-America selection during the 2004 cross country season before graduating with honors in 2005.
During her coaching tenure at Carleton, Funke-Harris helped the women’s cross country team capture a pair of MIAC titles and three NCAA Championship berths. She was instrumental in producing 10 all-conference honorees, 13 all-region performers and a pair of All-America selections.
Also working with the women’s track & field program, Funke-Harris helped guide Carleton student-athletes to 19 individual MIAC titles, 34 all-conference selections, 19 NCAA provisional qualifying marks and nine All-America performances.The Knights’ cross country and track & field teams have garnered 21 USTFCCCA All-Academic Awards in the last six years, as well as a CoSIDA Academic All-America First Team honoree.
Earning a bachelor’s degree in biology from Carleton in 2005, Funke-Harris earned her master’s in kinesiology and exercise physiology from the University of Texas-Austin in 2008. She holds a USATF Level I Coaching Certification, having also participated in the National Distance Running Summit in Grinnell, Iowa in 2011.