Joe Scarsella, an assistant coach at John Jay with deep roots in the Indians’ program, died yesterday after a long illness. He was 49.

Scarsella was a member of the first lacrosse team in John Jay history — the 1977 and ’78 club teams started by Bob Kear that moved to the varsity level in 1979.

He went on to play at Syracuse University from 1979 to 1981.

His passion for the game was evident in all his lacrosse-related endeavors. He also always carried himself with class and dignity.

“Joe was a good man,” John Jay coach Nick Savastano said.

Scarsella, who owned a landscape design firm, is survived by his wife Lisa, daughter Samantha, parents Edward and Marie of Goldens Bridge and brother Michael of Briarcliff Manor.

Arrangements for memorial services have not yet been finalized. I am told the wake is likely to be Saturday evening and Sunday day and evening at Clark’s in Katonah and the funeral on Monday. When those arrangements are finalized they will be posted at this link.

Reach Joe Lombardi at

Posted In: General

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6 Responses to “Sad news”

  1. Jaybird says:

    Joe was a gentleman who will be missed.

  2. meatball says:

    Joe new the game very well and had a great offensive mind. The jj kids will miss his knowledge

  3. slacrosse says:

    Didn’t know Joe but still wanted to share sympathies with the family. Sounds like was a great guy!

  4. Nick says:

    My condolences to Joe’s wife Lisa and daughter Samantha. Joe was always a pleasure to speak with.

  5. Old Rugger says:

    Joe did evaluations for the JJ Youth program for many yearws and was always teaching and positive. He will be missed.

  6. Lin says:

    Joe was a kind, loving, and giving man. He’ll be missed by all that knew him and loved him .

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