Editor’s note: The following was written by Matt “Ramathorne” Ramsey of the Connecticut Valley Lacrosse Club, a competitive post-collegiate team competing in the American Lacrosse League.
In this edition, Ramathorne interviewed one of the head honchos of the A.L.L. and got his unique perspective.
Interview with Tyler Leeds
Tyler is the Division Coordinator of American Lacrosse League in addition to being the President of Bay State Lacrosse Club.
Briefly explain your lacrosse background.
Tyler Leeds: I have been playing lacrosse since the 6th grade. I’ve played at the Division 2 college level and coached U13 lacrosse in Derry NH for 2 seasons.
How and when did Bay State LC form?
TL: Bay State formed 8 years ago when Tim Bethke moved up from Baltimore MD and wanted to expand the A.L.L. into the New England area. I worked with Tim to get the team off the ground and served as treasurer and now have taken over as president of the team.
What are some of the most difficult aspects of running a post-collegiate club lacrosse team?
TL: Getting guys to pay is obviously the most difficult aspect of running a team. Trying to balance having a good time and winning games.
What events made you pursue a bigger role within the New England Division and the American Lacrosse League?
TL: I wanted to gain some additional exposure to US Lacrosse. Bay State helped bring the A.L.L into NE and at the time there was no one else running the division so I took on the job of helping the new teams navigate the process and get into the league to help grow it.
Over the past several years are there any specific developments you have noted within the American Lacrosse League?
TL: The growth of the league as a whole has been great, bringing in the defunct USCLA teams has given a boost to the competition in the league.
Briefly comment on the quality of play within the American Lacrosse League and most specifically the New England Division.
TL: This season has shown great parity to start with all games having been decided by 1 goal. In years past there were definitely a couple tier 1 teams and then tier 1A teams. I’m looking forward to see what the rest of 2010 holds.
In your opinion, what makes for a successful post-collegiate season? What are your expectations for Bay State LC, the New England Division, and the league?
TL: It’s nice to win but I am more interested in having a good time, still being able to play at a competitive level and hanging out with a good group of guys after the games.
Lastly, what direction do you see the league heading in the years to come? What improvements do you see necessary to continue making the league a success?
TL: I would like to see more control given to the teams with some respects. I think it will be difficult for the league to grow too much larger as a full volunteer organization. I think there will be some growth and contraction but if we continue to have people who love the game and want to make the league work I think it will last for a long time.
LaxAllStar’s would like to thank Tyler for taking to time to talk with us.
Now let’s catch up with the action going on around the A.L.L.
A.L.L. Weekly Recap
This past Sunday was wet, it was cold and it was not pleasurable for anyone to be outside doing anything. Several teams decided to cancel or postpone their game arrangements while others decided to stick it out, get wet and do what they enjoy most, playing lacrosse.
There isn’t much to report from the Connecticut Valley sidelines as we were completely dominated by Boston Crabs LC and one player in particular, former Boston Blazer, Bryan Bendig. Bender, as he is socially known, managed to stifle the defense and put the ball pass our keepers 5 times in addition to completing 9 helpers.
Even though we scored the first goal off the first face-off from Pete Barone, former University of Hartford stand-out LSM, we couldn’t capitalize on many of our opportunities and left a lot to be desired. The final score was a depressing, 19-6.
But, as with every American Lacrosse League game, the end of the game meant a warm empty bar and brews with good friends and teammates. The local watering hole of Eastern Connecticut State University, Blarney’s Café, provided plenty of “beverage support” to anyone who may have been feeling a little down after our disappointing self-destruction.
Other action around the league was minimal as the weather deterred many “old guys” from stepping on the field. For those who did play the results were as follows: Sandy Point (NJ) squeaked out a victory over Delaware LC 8-7, Lacrosse Unlimited won it’s season opener versus Olympic Den (Long Island) 9-8, New Hampshire’s Warpigs LC bested Home Grown Lacrosse 13-6, Bay State once again fell short against a very talented North Shore squad 9-8, and the Jersey Thunder pummeled the Old Bridge Generals 20-3.
This weekend is a bye week for the New England division, but there will be plenty of action in other divisions around the league.
Check back next week for a highlight on the New York and New Jersey divisions as well as a recap of the weekend’s action.
About the author: Ramathorne’s career took him from the Varsity fields of Southington High School and the Nutmeg Elite Lacrosse programs to Division III top 25 school, Eastern Connecticut State University. Ramsay played as a midfielder for the Warriors from 2005-2008 helping the team to a Little East Conference Championship in 2006 and a birth into the Division III National Championship Tournament.
After graduating from Eastern Connecticut Ramsay assisted with the Rip-It Lacrosse program and currently runs Connecticut Calley Lacrosse Club, a competitive post-collegiate team competing in the American Lacrosse League.