Editor’s Note: Our main man in Kentucky. Muamer Razic, is back with another GREAT interview! This time he sat down with Trinity (KY) Coach, Pete Schroeder, Trinity is rolling along at 13-0 so far, and really making a dent in the overall KY lacrosse scene!
Trinity is 13-0 (congrats). That must make you feel great! What’s a regular day of practice like at Trinity?
Thanks Muamer, it does make me feel great – we’ve never been undefeated this late in the season. I’m very proud of our kids; this group does a great job of staying on the job & finding ways to win. They’re fun to coach.
Our typical day often starts with weights in our weight room, some stick work/shooting that involves a lot of touches, and usually some kind of small-sided drills (4v4, 4v3, 3v2 etc.) where we can get a lot of kids a lot of reps in different situations (clears/rides, transition, GBs, settled O&D). And then we often do some opponent-specific work or put in some extra time on phases of the game we’re struggling in.
Pete doing what he does best during the 2007 State title game.
How long have you been playing lacrosse? Coaching?
I grew up around the game, started playing organized ball as a 7th grader, and I still play a little. Close to 25 years. I started coaching in 2001, and started the program at Trinity in 2002, so this is my 11th year in coaching.
Who was the major influence in you playing lacrosse?
My dad, Bob Schroeder; He started our middle school program & then coached our high school program (Hunterdon Central HS in NJ). When I was young, going to lacrosse practice with my dad was often my daycare. It was cool being around him and also the older players. Everything I get right in coaching, I can probably trace it back to something my dad said or did.
How do you help Grow the Game?
The biggest way is volunteering time. The people you help are always so grateful. And it always feels good. We have middle school coaches watch our practice, I’ve presented topics at a middle school/high school coaches’ clinic, I’ve done free goalie clinics, I’ve done beginners clinics at middle schools & at high schools where lacrosse was brand new, last year I volunteered with the IMLCA at their youth clinics at the NCAA Final 4 in Baltimore last year, and I was on the Kentucky Lacrosse Association board of directors.
The thing is, this is de rigueur for long-time lacrosse people; our sport has a great culture of paying forward.
(Muamer Razic: I can vouch for that; Pete has been a huge help with Spartan Lacrosse. Thank you Pete, you’ve been a great associate and friend.)
How is lacrosse in the Ville different from hotbeds for lacrosse? Louisville has pumped out some great college players, Chase Carraro for example…
As the level of play improves across the board here, our best players are kids with not just raw athleticism, but good ball skills & lacrosse savvy to go with it. These kids can play with anyone, but we currently lack depth in this quality of player area compared to areas that have had lacrosse longer than the 10 years or so we’ve had it. But as more kids pick up the game at a younger age, kids at that level will be all over this town. Chase is an excellent athlete who wasn’t going to be satisfied with merely being the best player in Kentucky. And he is doing work for Denver this year.
What do you try instill in your players as a coach?
Do something to make us better every day. Prepare like we’re going to need you to be The Man at some point. Don’t play fast or slow, just play smart. Play together. Make the play that we need you to make. And that I really appreciate the work they put in for our program, it means a lot to me.
Trinity has a reputation of being successful and having great lacrosse teams; why’s that?
Our school has a successful football program that is a great source of pride for the school. I saw similar potential for a lacrosse program at Trinity. Our program gets more support from the school every year, which is crucial. Our parents & kids push hard to meet/exceed the standards we set. So there are a lot of people that work to make our program a success. We take some lumps and have some ups and downs. But the past successes are starting to feed the present, like the old Sun Tzu quote “opportunities multiply as they are seized.”
Winning the 2007 state title game.
Does having feeder programs for lacrosse up there help out in producing great players?
Absolutely; in the early years we had success manufacturing players that first picked up a stick in high school; feeder programs allow us to do more polishing of players than starting from scratch. This has helped us start to catch up with places like Cincinnati, Indianapolis & Nashville that have had lacrosse longer than Louisville. Any good feeder program has a dedicated coach that passes their knowledge & passion for lacrosse on to the kids. Can’t have too many of those guys.
Do you think lacrosse will become a sanctioned sport in Kentucky any time soon?
Yes, within the last month, the KHSAA just halved the number of schools required to add a sport for sanctioning. And lacrosse is very much on their radar. I’m guessing in the next 36 months. Now, if we can sanction it AND continue to grow the game, it could be big for our sport here. The two don’t automatically go hand-in-hand. I’d hate to see us sanction it & then have lacrosse stop growing here.
So do you know why Trinity and St. X have a rivalry?
Not being from Louisville, I feel like I’m a little late to this party; but Trinity & St. X are two Catholic boys’ high schools that compete on many levels, in many endeavors.
In lacrosse, a lot of the players attend the same parish middle school, and then go on to attend Trinity or St X. I’ve had the good fortune to coach a number of St X’s kids in travel ball. And I used to coach with Coach Howe when I first started coaching and helped coach his sons that year. So our programs are very familiar with each other, to say the least. It’s pretty cool to be a part of.
Highlights of the recent Trinity – St. Xavier game on lax.com
You founded Rock Steady Lacrosse; what is it/how is it going?
Rock Steady Lacrosse is a lacrosse instruction company where I work with boy’s middle school & high school players. I work with them & based on their skill level, give them an idea of what their “independent study” in lacrosse should look like. It’s a lot of fun & it’s been awesome to work with kids that have such a passion for lacrosse. I’m running a middle school camp at Trinity from June 3-5, it’s the 6th year for it & it’s going to be a blast.
You also coach the Bluegrass Bats lacrosse team, how did you get involved with them?
Two Trinity parents (Wayne Herner & Phil Fackler) started a travel team to expand opportunities for players from Kentucky to get experience & exposure in the offseason. A third Trinity parent David Purdie was the first coach of their team. I coached all three of their older sons at Trinity & now coach their younger sons. They asked me to get involved & I’d do anything for those guys, they’re great people. And it’s been great working with kids from different programs & doing what I can to help them get to the next level.
Thanks for taking the time out to speak with us, Coach Schroeder! Good luck the rest of the way!