Indiana Fever Head Coach Stephanie White in 2015 became the first coach to lead a team to the WNBA Finals in her first year as a head coach.
White was introduced as the fifth head coach of the Indiana Fever in September 2014, taking the reins from her mentor and women’s basketball coaching legend Lin Dunn.
The Fever finished with a 20-14 record, good for third place in the Eastern Conference. White’s team upset the No. 2 seed, Chicago, and No. 1 New York on the way to the finals, where the Fever lost to the No. 1 Western Conference team, Minnesota, 3-2.
White’s Fever faced—and won—five elimination games in the playoffs before finally succumbing to Minnesota.
“No one in this organization was surprised by [White’s] success as the Fever’s head coach in her first year. We’ve known for a very long time, Stephanie is a real winner,” said Rick Fuson, president of Pacers Sports & Entertainment, which owns the Fever.
The 38-year-old West Lebanon native may be the most iconic figure in Indiana women’s basketball. As a senior at Seeger Memorial High School, she averaged 36.9 points and 13.1 rebounds per game while being named Indiana Miss Basketball and the 1995 national high school player of the year by Gatorade and USA Today.
As a Purdue University senior, she averaged 20.2 points and 4.5 assists while earning college player of the year honors and leading Purdue to the 1999 NCAA championship.
After retiring from the WNBA in 2004, she went into coaching and was an assistant with the Fever when they won the league title in 2012.