Tag Archives: lacrosse

An Incredible Trip

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I went to Denver to ref games, and I came back with an entirely new perspective on lacrosse. I knew that lacrosse was played outside of North America, but it is one thing to know that and another thing to witness. I got to see thousands of people cheering on their teams in languages I did not understand. I got to see Team Uganda win it’s first ever game in international competition in a one-goal, come-from-behind victory. I got to watch Team New Zealand perform their Haka. I got to meet the Thompson brothers. I got to watch the officials call timeout to hand the ball scored to Team China’s Coach after they scored their first international goal. I got to witness the incredible connection that lacrosse provides to people across the globe.

There is no way to recap every great moment I experienced while at the World Games, but here are the experiences that were just too cool:

Team Uganda Wins!

While walking to catch the 2:15 shuttle back to the dorms I saw a ton of people holding cameras near Field 2. I asked one of the gentlemen near the end line what was going on and he said, “Uganda’s up by one goal with 30 seconds left!” Suddenly, I didn’t have to catch the shuttle. This was easily the biggest feel-good moment of the tournament for me, and from what I could tell everyone else at that field too. Since this was the last game on the field for the day the party didn’t end. All the players ran around the field to a standing ovation by the fans and everyone had one word to say: “Awesome!”



Red Hat!

The officials coordinator asked me if I wanted to be the Red Hat for the Iroquois-Australia game. The headset I’m wearing in the picture connected me to the TV Truck, and it was my job to inform the officiating crew when the broadcast was live or to hold them if replays were going on. Picked up on all the lingo that is used to flip cameras and how they marked plays for a new replay. Definitely a unique experience!



One of my coaches from back in the day, John Pritzlaff, was playing on Team New Zealand with his two brothers, which made watching their lacrosse Haka even more exciting. I still have no idea what the exact translation is, but the video below explains the ideas behind the Haka. I will say that it is not possible to witness this in person and not get swept up in the excitement and energy.

Run For Your Lives!

I had just gotten settled at the international ref tent after my set of festival games, when a massive storm rolled over the mountains. We got word that the fields were being evacuated and everyone had to get to the stadium for cover. There were about six officials under the tent, but about two dozen bags from the officials who were out working games. Someone shouted, “Everyone grab a bag!” and suddenly I’m double-timing it to the Stadium Press Box loaded up like a sherpa with all the other refs. All the bags were saved!


Cultural Exchange!

One experience was a little surreal. I had the honor of officiating an Open/Elite festival game between Team Tokyo and Team Tokai, two teams from Japan. The game was excellent. Both teams played with speed, finesse, and grace. On the rare occasions where I threw a flag I had to get the attention of the player who fouled and then signal the violation. No argument at all. Every player nodded their head and then ran briskly to the penalty box to serve their time. I can assure you that was not the case in the rest of the men’s club games. I didn’t really know how to accept a player accepting a penalty so mildly. The other cool part about this game was after the player shook hands each player lined up shoulder to shoulder and bowed to our officiating crew. We bowed back and shook hands with all the players.


I consider myself very lucky to have experienced this entire event, and it is unlikely that a World Games with this many teams and festival participants will happen again in the US for a while since putting this together was a massive undertaking. Still, even if I never experience a World Games on this scale again the memories from the past ten days are going to stay with me for a very long time.


Trilogy Lacrosse Partners With Major League Lacrosse

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AYL partnered with Trilogy Lacrosse to bring greater coaching resources to our volunteer coaches and expose our players to top-notch instruction at Trilogy camps. In some truly amazing news Trilogy Lacrosse has now partnered with Major League Lacrosse: http://www.majorleaguelacrosse.com/press-release/9323/major-league-lacrosse-partners-with-trilogy-lacrosse/.

AYL wishes to congratulate the entire Trilogy organization, and especially their founders Robert Lindsey and Ryan Boyle on this tremendous partnership with MLL!

From The Article:

“Trilogy Lacrosse is extremely excited to transition our longstanding relationship with Major League Lacrosse into an official partnership,” said VP of Marketing and Boston Cannons defender Mitch Belisle. “Our six National Directors currently competing in the MLL utilize their training and game experiences to shape the Trilogy KYP Curriculum™ that helps players, parents and coaches across the country improve.

“As the official lacrosse education partner, we will provide even more instruction to MLL fans and unparalleled access to the games’ top players with Events like our upcoming Player Clinics at Gillette Stadium, home of the New England Patriots.”

Trilogy History: 

Headquartered in New York City, Trilogy Lacrosse is one of the fastest growing youth lacrosse programs in the United States.

Founded in 2005,Trilogy Lacrosse is a national company with an established reputation as The Leader in Lacrosse Education. First and foremost, we are educators. Our national scope allows us to shape the next generation of lacrosse players on a scale necessary to make a positive and significant impact on the future of the game. Everyone in our organization is united by a passion for the game, teaching, and excellence.

Trilogy Lacrosse has taught over 20,000 student-athletes across the nation. Our students have continued on to some of the most prestigious colleges and universities in the country. In 2013-2014 alone, we anticipate working with over 7,500 additional student athletes. With our unique teaching philosophy Trilogy Lacrosse has created a first-class reputation for personal commitment to every student-athlete.

Featured Image Credit – http://www.majorleaguelacrosse.com/press-release/9323/major-league-lacrosse-partners-with-trilogy-lacrosse/


Inner Determination

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Sometimes in life you get too busy. And this year it is no different. I am busy but I thought it would be dishonorable not to pick up a pen and put my thoughts to paper. As I prepare for another year of coaching (36 years) I had a chance to reflect on someone who has had a tremendous impact on my life. Attached is a link about a special young man that I have had the honor of coaching.

With the exception of my son this person ranks as one of the top five people I have coached in the last 30 plus years.

I have coached at every level (except the pros) and have coached:

  • Kids that have never held a stick
  • All-State players
  • Academic All-Americans
  • All-Americans
  • State Champion players
  • All Conference College Players
  • College Conference Player of the Year
  • NCAA Final Four participants
  • An NCAA National Champion

Players come and go and some leave a mark on you that will never be erased. All too often we can get hung up on the notion that this kid is a can’t miss prospect, best athlete, a top DI player blah, blah, blah.

Bobby Fulton was all of those things but he chose a different path. He decided to go to Hampden-Sydney College in rural Farmville, Virginia. Hampden Sydney is a small all men’s institution which pre-dates the American Revolution. Patrick Henry and James Madison were the school’s first Trustees.

The front gate at the entrance of Hampden Sydney there is a plaque that states:

HUC VENITE IUVENES UT EXEATIS VIRI – which translates from Latin to: “Come here as youths so that you may leave as men.”

Hampden Sydney is all about honor and being a great citizen.

I had the pleasure of coaching Bobby when he was in the fifth grade and he was with Atlanta Youth Lacrosse till the eighth grade. Then he went on to star at Wesleyan High School. During the summers he played summer select lacrosse with our college recruiting teams as well as the Adidas All-American team. Bobby matriculated to Hampden Sydney and has gone on to have a stellar career being named Captain of the team his senior year. Bobby has since helped coach the Coyote select teams the last three years.
Now along the way Mary Jo, Gordon, and my daughter Caitlin (Lacrosse is a family thing) meet many players, parents and families at Atlanta Youth Lacrosse. And we have many hours of interaction with them along with a ton of lacrosse.

We have had the pleasure and privilege to be around his parents, Cyndi and Skip Fulton, and his sister, Kate (a great basketball player who still beats Bobby at Horse). The Fulton’s are wonderful people who are incredible supporters of Atlanta Youth Lacrosse and our local community. They are without a doubt the perfect parents who cheer their team but also cheer for the other team (unless it is a football playoff game then don’t sit next to Skip) who support their son in all the right ways without being over the top. He learned to shoot left handed because his Mom aka Sergeant Cyndi would not let him be out worked.

Mary Jo, Gordon, Caitlin and I are proud to call the entire Fulton family friends and loved ones. They are truly part of our family.

Bobby was one of the original STAR’s (Students that Accept Responsibility) the organization that Mary Jo set up to help us with all sorts of things during the season from keeping score, building benches to officiating. The STAR program is one of the most fun groups we have and each and every year we get a few kids that are potential Bobby’s.

Bobby is the type of player that does not care about the glory or statistics. He just works harder than the next person on the team. And always puts the team before him.

He always takes responsibility for his actions and if everyone reads what Bobby is doing in this article you will get a better understanding as to why I admire him so much. Because he was surrounded by love and people who cared about him he in turn does the same for others.

You young people that we have the privilege to coach should look at Bobby an emulate some of his qualities. We are all different and many of you will go on to do great things with your life and I hope you have the same support Bobby has had along with his inner determination to not be ORDINARY.


Featured Image Credit – Red Rocket Photography

See ya on the field,
Coach Lou