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Randy Mearns embracing challenge of starting St. Bona lacrosse

Mearns left Canisius after 19 years as the Golden Griffins head coach.

ST. BONAVENTURE, N.Y. (WIVB) - It was a quick two week process for Randy Mearns.

19 seasons at the helm of Canisius lacrosse. His alma mater and the place he holds the all-time scoring title.

"At the end of the day for myself, it was like maybe change is good," Mearns said.

So, when a St. Bonaventure down the road came knocking, looking to start a new program in town, Mearns was ready to listen.

"I rolled up and was like wow! Look at this place!"

Mearns was on a short list for the job with an impressive resume.

An All-American Golden Griffin, a career as a box player in the NLL, success on the international stage and a member of the Canadian lacrosse hall of fame.

"I look at that and I am like that is a home run," Bonnies athletic director Tim Kenney said. "We hit the home run hire, and the quality of person he is is perfect for St. Bonaventure."

One of the most important components to getting a Division I program at St. Bonaventure was a turf facility. There was one installed on the Bonnies campus three years ago. The team will begin competition in the 2018-19 season, giving Mearns a year to build his foundation.

"As we go through this process there will be challenges it is not going to be easy but I want to win a National Championship," Mearns said. "The kids we recruit will have to have high esteem goals. They have to want to be All-Americans and want to win state championships and national championships."

Mearns is no doubt excited for this challenge, and looking ahead to what the Bonines program can become. But, after almost two decades on Main steet in Buffalo, reflecting on his time at Canisius is emotional.

"A lot of former alums and guys that I played with said hey we are disappointed to see you go but we are excited that you have a new opportunity and new vision and that is exciting for you that meant the world to me my hope is that when people look back they think I left it better than when I found it."

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