The John Carroll School is pleased to announce that Holly Ismail has been named head coach of the varsity girls’ basketball program for the 2021-2022 season. Coach Ismail brings with her a championship pedigree and strong track record of player development on and off the court. The move represents a return to the Patriot athletic program for Coach Ismail, who previously served as an assistant in the program during the 2017 season and is the mother of John Carroll alumnus Qadir ’18.
John Carroll Director of Athletics Seth Goldberg says, “We are extremely excited to welcome Holly back to The John Carroll School. Her basketball credentials are second to none, and success has followed her in every step she has taken, both as a player and a coach. Even with all her accolades, this decision was made based on her passion to help our girls grow. She will be a tremendous role model and her vision and philosophy of building a successful, positive culture here aligns perfectly with our school’s mission and direction.”
In addition to numerous accolades as a high school athlete, Coach Ismail played for Syracuse University where she currently holds the record for the most blocked shots in game, season and career. She also ranks third for the Orange in career points scored and was selected to the 1991 All Big East team. Coach Ismail is also a member of the Connecticut Women’s Basketball and Volleyball Halls of Fame.
A proven winner, Coach Ismail has coached at and won championships at all levels of competition, ranging from club teams to the collegiate ranks. Her previous posts include serving as head coach of Maryland Elite and Patterson Mill High School. Under her leadership, the Huskies won State Championships in 2014, 2015 and 2017, making them the first girls’ team in the county to win three titles at the state level, and Ismail was selected as the Baltimore Sun, Varsity Sports Network and 695 Hoops High School Basketball Coach of the Year in 2014. Coach Ismail has also held the role of Assistant Coach at Harford Community College, where she helped guide the Owls to a Region 20 Championship as well as a berth in the NJCAA DI championship. She currently serves as Director of Regional Recruiting & Recruiting Specialist for Next College Student Athlete, based in Chicago, Illinois, where she assists student-athletes in successfully navigating the recruiting process, giving her valuable experience in aiding her players in continuing their academic and athletic careers.
For Coach Ismail, the opportunity is a perfect fit. “When I learned that the head girls’ basketball coaching position was open at The John Carroll School, I immediately felt excitement for the possibility of coaching at a school that is already familiar to me personally for my family and professionally. As a long-time successful basketball coach both in Harford County and at the national level, this opportunity is a natural fit for me to continue coaching and developing young female athletes and building a well-respected program at JC.”