BALTIMORE – The UMBC baseball program will honor former head coach John Jancuska in a pre-game ceremony prior to the Retrievers' non-conference game against local rival Towson on Tuesday, April 29 at Alumni Field. The ceremony is scheduled to begin at 5:40 p.m. with first pitch between the Retrievers and Tigers set for 6:00 p.m.
Jancuska served as the head coach for UMBC from 1978 until 2011 when assistant coach and Retriever alum Bob Mumma took the reins. Jancuska compiled 682 wins during his 34-year tenure, leading the Retrievers to the NCAA tournament five times, including that first season in 1978. He helped mentor three Retrievers who went on to reach the major leagues, the last being pitcher Zach Clark who pitched for the Baltimore Orioles during the 2013 season.
The Retriever mentor guided UMBC to back-to-back NCAA Division II Middle Atlantic Regional tournaments in 1978 and 1979 before helping them return to the playoffs for the 1986 South Atlantic Regional. In 1986, Jancuska assisted in the school transitioning to Division I status for athletics.
Jancuska returned UMBC to prominence in the 1990's as the Retrievers won a school record 37 games in 1992, advancing to the NCAA East Regionals where they took on the No. 1 team in the country, the Miami Hurricanes. The Retrievers then turned in back-to-back 30-win seasons in 2001 and 2002, winning the Northeast Conference championship in 2001.
Jancuska was honored as the Coach of the Year in four different NCAA Division I conferences during his tenure and was inducted into the UMBC Athletics Hall of Fame in 2010.
Since his retirement from baseball in 2011, Jancuska has served in the UMBC Department of Athletics as a supervisor of athletics, recreation, and physical education.
Jancuska resides in Sykesville, Md. with his wife, Lee Ann. The couple has adult three daughters, Beth Ann, Claire, and Devon, and four grandchildren.