Matthew LaBranche began his tenure as Director of Athletics, Recreational Sport & Physical Education at Western New England University on July 2, 2018.
LaBranche returned to lead the Golden Bears following a five-year stint as baseball coach at Eastern Connecticut State University.
LaBranche is no stranger to Western New England, having served as baseball coach at the University for 14 seasons from 2000-13. He led the program to unprecedented success, winning nearly 70 percent of the games he coached with a 429-187 (.696) record. His squads captured nine conference championships (four GNAC, five CCC), reached the NCAA Division III Tournament on 10 occasions, and advanced all the way to the College World Series in 2011.
In addition to his coaching duties at Western New England, LaBranche served as Coordinator of Physical Education for six years, as well as roles including Instructor of Health/Physical Education, compliance assistant, and contest manager.
LaBranche left Western New England for Eastern Connecticut in the summer of 2013. He guided the Warriors to 124 victories over five seasons, a pair of Little East Conference championships, and two trips to the NCAA Tournament.
Outside of baseball, LaBranche was active within the Eastern Connecticut athletic department and University as game operations manager, travel coordinator, and assistant compliance coordinator in addition to serving on the Title IX Committee and Student Affairs Professional Development Committee.
LaBranche earned his bachelor's (1992) and master's ('94) degrees in physical education from Springfield College. He graduated summa cum laude and was a four-year member of the baseball team.
In 19 years as a college head coach between Western New England and Eastern Connecticut, LaBranche compiled 553 victories, 12 conference championships, 13 NCAA Tournament appearances, and numerous conference/regional coach of the year accolades.
LaBranche and his wife Judi reside in Wilbraham with their two children, Matthew (20) and Dominique (15).