LOUDONVILLE, NY – Safiya Grant, who served on Ali Jaques’ first two staffs at Siena, is rejoining the women’s basketball program as an assistant coach. Grant, who was previously an assistant with the Saints from 2012-14, returns to Loudonville after spending the past two seasons in a similar position at Western Carolina.
“I’m happy to be able to bring Coach Grant back to the Siena family,” said Jaques. “Coach Grant was instrumental in our first two recruiting classes which included Meghan Donohue, Margot Hetzke, and Kollyns Scarbrough. She’s a tireless worker, and I’m grateful that she’s back in the Green and Gold. She’ll work with our point guards, and I’m confident that she will be a great fit for our players and staff.”
Grant returns to the Capital Region following a two-year stint with the Catamounts where she served under head coach Stephanie McCormick. The duo previously worked together as assistants on Jaques’ 2013-14 staff. While at Western Carolina, Grant worked primarily with the guards and assisted in the development of 2016 Southern Conference All-Freshman selection Raziyah Farrington.
“I’m excited to return to Siena,” commented Grant. “I’m looking forward to the opportunity to work with Coach Jaques again and do all that I can to help bring this program a MAAC Championship.”
During her first stint at Siena, Grant assisted Jaques in helping to lay the groundwork for the new regime. In her first season, the Saints advanced to the MAAC Semifinals, and in year two she was part of a Siena squad which recorded the program’s 600th all-time victory.
Grant matriculated to Siena following a two-year appointment as the Director of Basketball Operations as Providence College. The Friars won 26 games in her two seasons with the program in which she oversaw the team’s day-to-day operations, managed schedules, and arranged team travel amongst other duties.
Grant began her coaching career as the head freshman basketball coach at Wauwatosa West High School in Milwaukee, Wisconsin from 2008-10.
Grant played point guard under legendary head coach Debbie Ryan at the University of Virginia from 2000-04. She appeared in 93 games including 43 starts for the Cavaliers, and played in three NCAA Tournaments while being named Virginia’s Most Improved Player following her junior season.
A native of the Bronx, New York, Grant earned her B.A. in Anthropology from Virginia in May 2004. Immediately following graduation, she spent two years as a media relations assistant at her alma mater.
Grant joins a Siena Women’s Basketball program which posted a 14-16 overall record last season and tied for third in the MAAC with a 13-7 league mark. The Saints ended the season by winning 12 of their final 18 games, and the team’s 13 MAAC victories were tied for the program’s most conference triumphs in 14 years.