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Harry Perretta
Harry  Perretta

Head Coach

Alma Mater:
Lycoming '78


Villanova Falls to DePaul in BIG EAST Battle

Devon Kane Leads The Wildcats With 19 Points


Emily Leer's Career-High Leads Villanova Past Georgetown

Leer Scores A Career-Best 28 Points In The Win


Villanova Registers Sixth Win in a Row

Wildcats tally 61-46 home win over Butler


Caroline Coyer Leads Wildcats to Road Win at Marquette

The Sophomore Scored A Career-High 20 Points In the Victory


Caroline Coyer Leads Villanova to a 59-58 Win at Temple

Taylor Holeman Scores The Game-Winner With Nine Seconds Left


Women's Basketball vs. Georgetown

Villanova women's basketball vs. Georgetown at the Pavilion


Women's Basketball vs. Seton Hall

Women's Basketball vs. Seton Hall


Women's Basketball vs. Seton Hall

Villanova hosted Seton Hall on January 11, 2014 in a game televised live on Fox Sports 2.


Villanova vs. No. 3 Connecticut - AP Photos

Villanova vs. No. 3 Connecticut - AP Photos

Now in his 39th year as head coach of the Villanova women's basketball program, Harry Perretta has established himself as one of the most respected and knowledgeable coaches in the country. A true teacher both on and off the court, Perretta strives to have a positive influence on his student-athletes not only as basketball players, but also as people.

Last season, Perretta became the 10th active and 14th overall Division I women’s basketball coach to win 700 career games and just the third active Division I women’s coach to win 700 games at one school when Villanova tallied a 63-60 win at Georgetown on Feb. 21, 2016. He also became the 25th women’s coach across all divisions to win 700 games. The Georgetown win was also his 300th Big East regular season victory making him just the fourth coach in the history of the Big East Conference to achieve this feat. Syracuse men’s coach Jim Boeheim leads the way with 416 Big East wins, followed by Connecticut’s Geno Auriemma with 402 victories and former Connecticut men’s coach Jim Calhoun who had 309 league wins.

Perretta led the 2015-16 Wildcats to a fourth consecutive 20-win campaign with a 20-12 overall record and a 12-6 Big East mark. This was Perretta’s 18th, 20-win season of his career. The Wildcats earned a bid to the WNIT where they advanced to the second round. The WNIT bid was the team’s 13th postseason appearance in the last 16 years. Perretta led four players to All-Big East honors a season ago highlighted by Caroline Coyer earning first team All-League honors for the second straight season. Freshman guard Adrianna Hahn was a unanimous selection to the All-Rookie Team and was the league’s Sixth Player of the Year, while junior guard Alex Louin was named to the Big East Honorable Mention Team. Senior guard Katherine Coyer garnered the Big East Sportsmanship Award.

In 2014-15, Perretta led the Wildcats to a 22-14 overall record and a 12-6 mark in the Big East. The Wildcats earned a bid to the WNIT where they advanced to the quarterfinal round. Under Perretta’s guidance in 2014-15, four Wildcats earned All-Big East accolades highlighted by junior guard Caroline Coyer who earned first team honors. Coyer becomes the 12th Wildcat to earn first team All-Big East distinction under Perretta’s tutelage. In addition, senior center Emily Leer garnered second team All-Big East accolades, Louin claimed a spot on the All-Freshman Team and senior forward Taylor Holeman was named the Big East Sixth Player of the Year. Coyer went on to earn a spot on United States Pan American Games team roster.

During the 2013-14 season, Perretta led the Wildcats to a 23-9 record and berth in the WNIT where Villanova advanced to the second round.  Villanova finished 12-6 in Big East play which was good enough for a third place tie in the final league standings. Under Perretta’s direction, senior guard Devon Kane claimed first team All-Big East honors, while sophomore guard Caroline Coyer was voted the league’s Sixth Player of the Year. 

Perretta led Villanova to its 10th NCAA Tournament appearance in 2012-13 by guiding the Wildcats to a 21-11 overall record. Villanova also went 4-0 in the Philadelphia Big Five to claim the program’s 14th City Series title under Perretta. He also helped guide senior forward Laura Sweeney to second team All-Big East honors.

The 2011-12 season was a milestone year for Perretta. On Nov. 12, 2011, he earned his 600th career victory with a 76-47 victory at Iona.  By reaching this milestone, Perretta became the 35th coach in the history of women's basketball at any level to reach the 600-win plateau, including the 22nd Division I coach to accomplish the feat. He is also just the seventh Division I coach to win 600 games at one school.

Perretta currently ranks 14th on the winningest active Division 1 collegiate coaching list with a 702-439 career record. The 683 victories rank him as the all-time winningest coach in the history of Villanova basketball for both men and women.

His second milestone of the 2011-12 season came at DePaul on Feb. 8, when Perretta coached in his 1,000th career game, becoming just the seventh coach in the history of NCAA women's basketball at any level to coach 1,000 games at the same school.

During the 2008-09 season, Perretta led the Wildcats to the NCAA Tournament for the ninth time in his Villanova career. This marked the ninth postseason appearance in the previous 10 years for the Wildcats. After playing in the 2000 WNIT, Villanova went to four consecutive NCAA Tournaments from 2001-2004 before playing in the WNIT in 2005, 2006 and 2008. Picked to finish 10th in the pre-season Big East Conference coaches poll, the Wildcats tallied a 10-6 league mark and finished tied for fourth in the conference standings. For his efforts in 2008-09, Perretta was named the Big East Conference Co-Coach of the Year. This is the third time in his career that he has garnered Big East Coach of the Year distinction.

Under Perretta’s tutelage in 2008-09, senior forward Laura Kurz was a unanimous first team All-Big East selection, in addition to being named the Big East Co-Most Improved Player. Kurz finished her senior campaign averaging 17.4 points per game and 7.2 rebounds per contest. She was also named the Philadelphia Big Five Player of the Year.

In 2004-05, Perretta became the 26th Division I women's basketball head coach to win 500 games when the Wildcats defeated Pittsburgh, 70-49, on February 2.  Villanova finished the season with a 19-12 overall record and qualified for the postseason with a WNIT berth. 

One year earlier in 2003-04, Perretta led his team to a fourth-straight 20-win campaign and a fourth consecutive NCAA Tournament berth where the Wildcats advanced to the second round. Perretta also coached his squad to a second-straight Philadelphia Big Five title in 2003-04. For his efforts, he was named Big Five Coach of the Year for the second consecutive season.  

The 2002-03 season was a special one for Perretta and the Wildcats.  In addition to an impressive 28-6 overall record and a 12-4 Big East Conference mark, Perretta led the Wildcats to their third Big East Conference Tournament championship and first since 1987 with an improbable 52-48 upset over previously unbeaten Connecticut. The win snapped Connecticut's then NCAA Division I women's basketball record of 70-straight victories and ended Connecticut's streak of nine-straight conference tournament championships. 

The 28 wins recorded in 2002-03 is the second most victories in school history. Villanova was rewarded for its season by earning a No. 2 seed in the 2002-03 NCAA Tournament which is the highest seed ever for a Philadelphia area women's basketball team. In the NCAA Tournament, the Wildcats recorded wins over St. Francis (Pa.), George Washington and Colorado and advanced to the Elite Eight for the first time in the program's history. Also, during the 2002-03 season, Villanova went 4-0 in the Philadelphia Big Five to capture the City Series championship and he was named the Big Five Coach of the Year. Under Perretta's guidance, senior guard Trish Juhline led the Big East in scoring and garnered first team All-Big East acclaim for the second-straight year, while senior forward Katie Davis was named second team All-Big East and junior guard/forward Courtney Mix was a Big East Honorable Mention Team selection. In addition, Juhline was named the Big East Tournament's Most Outstanding Player.

In 2001-02, Perretta guided Villanova to a 20-11 mark and a trip to the NCAA Tournament.  In the NCAA's, Villanova received the No. 9 seed in the west region where they defeated Pepperdine in the first round before losing to No. 1 seed Oklahoma in the second round. Perretta helped Juhline become the first Wildcat since 1994-95 to be named first team All-Big East. Perretta was also instrumental in helping senior point guard Mimi Riley earn Big East Honorable Mention acclaim in 2001-02  

The 2000-01 season was a memorable one for Perretta, as he led his team to a 22-9 overall record and a berth in the NCAA Tournament where they advanced to the second round. In a 60-55 win over Temple  on Dec. 2, 2000, Perretta won his 400th career game and with the 61-45 victory over Providence on Feb. 24, 2001, he became the all-time winningest coach in the history of Villanova basketball for both men and women with career win number 414.  For his efforts in 2000-01, Perretta was named the Philadelphia Big Five Co-Coach of the Year. Also that season, Perretta coached senior center Brandi Barnes to third team All-Big East distinction and Juhline garnered Big East Honorable Mention acclaim. In the Philadelphia Big Five, Mix was named Rookie of the Year.             

In 1995-96, Perretta led his team to a 21-7 record and added to his already impressive resume when he earned Big East Coach of the Year honors along with the Philadelphia Big Five Coach-of-the-Year award.  Already the winningest coach in Villanova women's basketball history, on January 8, 1995 against the Georgetown Hoyas, Perretta earned his 300th career win at the age of 39. 

The dean of the Big East and Big 5 coaches, Perretta has brought the Wildcats national respect and success during his tenure at Villanova.  Always a crowd favorite wherever he goes, he is one of the most animated and vocal coaches in the country, continually instructing his players during the course of a game.  Year-in and year-out, his teams are feared for their aggressive play, disciplined style, defensive prowess and pre-game preparations of an opponent.

A teacher of basketball, Perretta also realizes the importance of the overall college experience. He and his staff follow closely each player's academic progress, and in his 38 years at Villanova, 99 percent of the student-athletes who has stayed all four years has received her degree. Perretta is also a firm believer of using the basketball experience to teach his players lessons on life.  Upon graduation, it is a sure bet that Perretta's players will leave Villanova as better basketball players, in addition to being prepared to be a success in whatever career avenue they choose.

During his career on the Main Line, he has led the Wildcats to 10 NCAA Tournament appearances, eight WNIT berths, national rankings in the Associated Press poll, Big East regular season and tournament championships in both 1985-86 and 1986-87, the 2003 Big East Tournament title, 10 outright and four shared Big 5 titles, and seventeen 20-win or better seasons. In addition, one of his players, Shelly Pennefather, was recognized in 1987 as the nation's top women's basketball player, winning the Margaret Wade Trophy and earning Kodak All-America honors.

Perretta began his career on the Main Line in 1978 at the age of 22, the youngest coach ever to head a women's program at Villanova.  In his first season, he led the 'Cats to a 17-8 record and was a finalist for the AIAW small college coach of the year. During his career, Perretta and the Wildcats have had many highlights, including reaching the Final Four of the AIAW in 1982.  The 1982-83 season saw Villanova begin play in NCAA Division I and in the Big East Conference.  Since joining the Big East in 1982, Perretta has compiled a 206-185 conference record.

Perretta attended Lycoming College after earning All-Catholic League honors at Monsignor Bonner High School in Upper Darby, Pa.  His playing career was cut short, however, by an ankle injury during his freshman year at Lycoming. Perretta spent the remainder of his college years assisting Lycoming's varsity and junior varsity programs as a coach, and he also aided the women's program.  He received his bachelor's degree in social studies and a secondary teaching certificate in 1978.  In 1995, he earned his Master's Degree in Education from Villanova.

Perretta is married to the former Helen Koskinen and they are the parents of a 18-year old son, Stephen William and a 16-year old son Michael John. Together, they reside in Drexel Hill, Pa.