The youth lacrosse program has its geneses in 1990 when a group of dedicated parents along with Jim Amen, currently athletic director of Cold Spring Harbor High School, and Bob Macaluso, Northport boys varsity coach, took 70 boys into competitive league play. The early years were challenging to say the least. The early youth program fielded teams in combined grades of 3rd & 4th and 5th & 6th and played in the Nassau County league.
The originators of the youth program had the vision of establishing Northport as a highly competitive lacrosse program. With the help of the Suffolk County PAL, the program was able to weather the storm of the first few years. Dedicated parents and volunteers persevered through those early years with borrowed equipment frequently stored from game to game in the trunks of the family automobile. And it was not uncommon for the field not to be clearly lined or the goals located in some far reaches of the athletic fields. Through the cooperation and support of the Northport High School Athletic Department, the youth program was permitted to practice and hold its home games on the high school practice fields.
As the years went by, the Northport PAL (as the program was then known) saw tremendous growth. Not very competitive in the early years, as the players stayed with the program they saw their skill levels increase. As those skills improved, so did their team records. There were more victories to celebrate than losses to ponder.
Our program grew and was successful in fielding teams in every grade level from 3rd to 9th. And in some levels, the club supported 3 teams in one grade.
As the boys program was in full stride, the girls organized themselves, also under the PAL banner. Maureen Hordy and her neighbor, Marilyn Vucota, started the girls program in 1995. Marilyn Vucota, a standout college player from Hofstra, was the programs first girls coach while Maureen Hordy took care of the administration of the team. The beginnings were modest with the 24 girls on one team. They were a combined 4th, 5th and 6th grade team.
Not unlike the development of the boys program, the girls also saw a dramatic rise in interest in Lacrosse in the community. When the Vucota family relocated, Maureen Hordy took over total responsibility for the program. The girls program flourished as well and last year the girls program supported over 150 players on 7 teams and an instructional clinic.
The girls and boys programs have thrived through the dedication of many volunteers from the Northport community. Acompora, Searing, Thompson, Quigley, Marra, Devine, Dahlem, Mancuso, Napolitano, Nolan, Barbagallo, Ford, Loeber, McLam ... these are but a few who have dedicated their time and energy to the program.
Seeing the need for an instructional program for the young ones in our community, Northport Lacrosse Club started a clinic for 1st and 2nd graders. In 1999 the clinic program had seen 40 or more players each year develop the skills and sportsmanship values that are needed to make the transition into competitive team play. With cameo appearances from some of the high school players and their coaches, our pee wee players have learned the rules of lacrosse, fundamental skills and the spirit of good team play.
Northport Lacrosse Club was established in 2003 and we now routinely see over over 200 kids in our K-2 clinic, with armies of volunteers common on Saturday afternoon in the spring.
We have between 600-700 players in the club each year, an in some cases, field 4 teams at a single grade level.
Boys and girls lacrosse is thriving in Northport and it all begins with the Northport Lacrosse Club and its countless volunteers -- parents, coaches, board members, team moms. They are the lifeblood of our lacrosse community -- a community that is clearly alive and well from our youth to middle school to high school programs!
WITHOUT YOU THERE WOULD BE NO NLC!