The coaching search was spearheaded by BayHawks General Manager of Basketball Operations and New York Knicks Assistant General Manager, Allan Houston. “We are extremely excited that Gene Cross is the new head coach of the Erie BayHawks. We believe that his passion for the game, experience in evaluating players, knowledge of the NBA Development League, and his commitment to winning and developing young talent on and off the court will make him a great addition to not only the BayHawks, but to the New York Knicks, as well.” Houston said.
His commitment to winning also struck chords with the BayHawks majority owner, Steve Demetriou. “Gene Cross embodies the BayHawks commitment to excellence. I am certain that he will form and lead a BayHawks team that competes for championships while being active in the Erie community throughout his tenure.” Demetriou said.
Prior to joining the Energy, Cross spent time with the Maine Red Claws and Utah Flash of the D-League following multiple years coaching in the college ranks. Originally hired as an assistant by the University of Illinois-Chicago, he made the jump to the Conference USA by joining the DePaul Blue Devils in 2002. In 2005, Cross accepted a position with the Virginia Cavaliers before moving on to assist Mike Bray at Notre Dame the following season. In 2008, Cross was hired as the head coach of the Toledo Rockets in the Mid American Conference and held the position until his move to the D-League in 2010.
Replacing Jay Larranaga, who departed to serve as an assistant for the Boston Celtics, Cross will begin to shape his team this weekend in New York City with the first of two open tryouts. A second tryout will take place in Erie on October 13. The BayHawks begin the season on Friday, November 23, at Fort Wayne against the Mad Ants and play their first home game on Saturday, December 1, at 7 p.m. versus the Canton Charge. Season tickets and group tickets are on sale now and can be purchased by visiting or calling the team offices at 814-790-5600.