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Janine Tucker wrapping up legendary lacrosse career at Johns Hopkins

Johns Hopkins' all-time winningest women's lacrosse coach retiring after 29 seasons
Janine Tucker
Posted at 4:49 PM, May 05, 2022

BALTIMORE — For the past 29 years there has been one constant voice directing the Johns Hopkins University women’s lacrosse team.

The voice of Janine Tucker.

"I’m enjoying every blessed minute I have left with my team," she said.

After almost three decades leading the Blue Jays, this weekend’s Big Ten Tournament could be her last as head coach. Tucker is retiring after the season. It’s an announcement she made in August. Now it’s getting real.

"It is coming to kind of that idea of fruition that, ‘Okay, Janine. This part of your life, this chapter, is closing and there are going to be some other ones that are opening'. For that it’s bitter sweet. Focusing way more on the sweet," she said.

The all-time winningest coach in Hopkins program history (313-178) leads the Jays into Friday’s conference semifinal in Piscataway, N.J. They enter as the No. 4 seed, with a 10-7 record, needing to keep their season and Tucker’s career alive.

"We are not going to take a minute for granted," she said.

"We’re not ready for it to be over. I know she’s not ready for it to be over," said Blue Jays attacker Shelby Harrison. "I think everyone is almost just playing that much harder just to earn that extra time with her."

"This is her last group of girls that she is going to have wearing Hopkins across our chest. So, we’re trying to just live in the moment and be grateful for every opportunity we have with her and with our team," added Blue Jays defender Jeanne Kachris.

Adding to all of the emotion and intrigue on Friday is Hopkins’ opponent - the top-seeded and rival Maryland Terrapins.

"It’s actually really awesome," said Tucker. "It’s kind of how the universe meant for things to evolve for us over this season. To have a culmination and be able to make it into the Big Ten Tournament and to have to go trough Maryland to then get to the championship game, that’s what we’re focused on."

And focused on having Tucker's voice boom loud and clear for at least another game.

Follow Shawn Stepner on Twitter @StepnerWMAR and Facebook