Washington State Lacrosse Hall of Fame to induct six tonight

Issaquah, Bainbridge Island, Tacoma, Seattle lacrosse leaders to be feted

SEATTLE — Six lacrosse leaders from Bainbridge Island, Issaquah, Seattle and Tacoma with significant impacts on youth and high school lacrosse in the state will be inducted into the Washington State Lacrosse Hall of Fame in ceremonies tonight at Kirkland’s Heathman Hotel.

US Lacrosse - Washington State ChapterAmong the state lacrosse hall’s Class of 2013 are former Bainbridge High School boys coach and longtime board member of the Washington State Chapter of US Lacrosse, Dave Low; Issaquah High School boys lacrosse coach and program founder, Brandon Fortier; and the founder of the Tacoma’s youth lacrosse association which has since grown to serve elementary, middle and high school students in communities throughout the South Sound, Todd Thorpe.

Longtime Lakeside School educator and girls head coach Jamie Asaka will also be enshrined along with founder of the state lacrosse officials association, Maggie O’Sullivan and founder of a popular youth lacrosse program on Seattle’s Queen Anne Hill, Steph Terrien.

The inductees are among a group of now 28 ground-breaking lacrosse leaders from across the state to be enshrined in the Washington State Lacrosse Hall of Fame.

Ceremonies for the Washington state lacrosse hall’s fourth lacrosse induction class get underway at 7 p.m.

The feting is part of a full weekend of events celebrating lacrosse in Washington state that includes hand’s on youth, coaching and officiating clinics, and Sunday’s NCAA Seatown Classic.  The collegiate lacrosse matchup will bring Pac-12 women’s rivals USC and Oregon to Issaquah High School for the first NCAA women’s Division I lacrosse game in state history. The NCAA Seatown Classic gets underway at 1 p.m., Sunday at the Issaquah High School Stadium.

About Lacrosse in Washington State

Lacrosse has over 100 years of history in Washington state with clubs playing in the early 1900s and high schools now in their fourth decade of state competition.  With Native American origins, lacrosse is one of the oldest organized sports on the continent and today is considered the fastest growing sport in America.  In Washington state, some 4,000 student-athletes attending over 200 WIAA high schools play prep lacrosse, while another 6,000 play lacrosse at the youth, adult and collegiate club levels throughout the state.

For more information on lacrosse in Washington state visit http://www.uslacrosse.org/chapterwashington or http://www.WashingtonHSLAX.com

 

Washington State Lacrosse Hall of Fame  Class of 2013 

DAVE LOW  (Bainbridge Island, Wash.)

A long-time state lacrosse leader, coach and player, Bainbridge Island’s Dave Low brought the same tenacious spirit and respect for game and opponent that he displayed on the field of play to leadership roles in the State of Washington during a period of the sport’s unprecedented growth.

00000110

Former Bainbridge High School boys lacrosse coach Dave Low has led the Washington state lacrosse community through a period of unprecedented growth at the youth and high school levels. (Photo: Dave Low)

While serving as Washington High School Boys Lacrosse Association President (2003 – 2007) and president of the Washington State Chapter of US Lacrosse since 2007, Low helped guide the sport at all levels while opening its doors to educators, families and new players across the state.

Since first serving as president of the WHSBLA in the early 2000s, high school lacrosse under Low’s leadership prospered.

In a decade-and-a-half, the sport has experienced a growth rate of over 230 percent – expanding from just 39 boys and girls teams state wide to nearly 100 from Spokane, Tri Cities, Wenatchee and Selah in eastern Washington to western Washington communities from the Canadian border south to the Oregon state line.  Today under Low’s leadership, some 4,000 student-athletes across the state attending over 200 high schools have an opportunity to play prep lacrosse.

An astute All-State attackman at New Jersey’s Blair Academy from 1986-89 who excelled at not just lacrosse, but soccer and basketball, Low earned the New Jersey state scoring title, which he held for two decades and was selected as a New Jersey “Player of the Decade” for the 1980s.

As a senior captain at Middlebury, Low was named the school’s scholar-athlete award winner and was a John P. Stabile Memorial Trophy winner awarded to a student-athlete who best exemplified the school’s spirit.

After arriving in western Washington, the Blairstown, N.J. native who makes his home on Bainbridge Island, brought his intelligence and work-ethic on the field of play to both playing opportunities and leadership roles with the local game.

While playing for the Seattle Lacrosse Club from 1993-2001, Low found time to follow the educational spirit instilled by his father, teaching and advocating a passion for the game, first as a coach of the Bainbridge Middle School program in 1995 and 96 and later as boys coach at Bainbridge High School from 1997-2001.

As a state leader, Low was instrumental in the formation of the Washington’s lacrosse hall of fame and in 2012 and 2013 brought NCAA Division I men’s and women’s lacrosse to the state for the first time through the NCAA Seatown Classic.

In Washington state, Low’s passion for lacrosse and respected leadership skill has unified players, officials, families and leaders alike, inspiring all to come together and creatively build on lacrosse’s great history and traditions in the state.

 

BRANDON FORTIER (Issaquah)

Since his playing days with the Eastside Lacrosse Club, Issaquah’s Brandon Fortier has pioneered lacrosse in the Issaquah and Sammamish plateau areas, parlaying his passion for the game into a career as a respected educator, coach and league leader.

the trophy 09

Issaquah High School boys lacrosse coach and program founder Brandon Fortier (right) along with brother Jordan Bayly following the Eagles’ 2009 Washington Lacrosse State Championship victory (Photo: Brandon Fortier)

Founding Issaquah High School’s boys program in 2001, one of the most successful prep lacrosse coaches in state history, Fortier has compiled a record of 193-52-0 as the Eagles have soared to five state championship appearances (2004, 2005, 2006, 2008, 2009) winning it all in 2004, 2008 and 2009.

An educator at heart, the three-time All-State defender/midfielder and member of Eastlake High School’s first graduating class in 1995 who now teaches PE at Issaquah, went on to a storied collegiate career at Whittier College in California.

An SCIAC Scholar-Athlete award winner at Whittier, Fortier played on a Poet squad that compiled a 63-7-0 record and three Western Collegiate Lacrosse League titles.

Following college, Fortier returned to Washington state and began a prep coaching career that would span well into the next decade.

After a brief stint with the Eastside Lacrosse Club and then time-away to earn his teaching credentials at Eastern Washington University, Fortier and his brother Jordan Bayly worked together with a group of Issaquah parents in 2002 to help found the program at Issaquah High School.  To this day Bayly is at Fortier’s side as an Eagles assistant coach.

At Issaquah, Fortier blossomed as an educator and coach, coaching three All-Americans and another 59 players to All-State honors.  Seven of his Issaquah players have gone on to play with NCAA college teams and another 21 have earned roster spots on their college club teams.

A driving force of the Washington High School Boys Lacrosse Association, Fortier has been instrumental in the growth of high school lacrosse in Washington state.

Serving as an original board member of the WHSBLA, Fortier has been active in leadership roles both highly visible and quiet, including serving as an original WHSBLA board member, state Division II representative, Division I representative and league scheduler along with coordinating the well-respected “Sunday Stroll” column, which has brought updates and insight to the state lacrosse community for more than a decade.

Since launching the Issaquah program in 2002 as the state’s 18th boys team, Fortier has served among a WHSBLA leadership group that guided the boys high school segment to grow over 60 percent in the last decade to nearly 60 teams including eight in eastern Washington high schools.

Competitive to the core, Fortier still has his hand in the game as a successful club player, formerly with Team Rainier and Team Blue Collar, and most recently Team Kavu.

 

TODD THORPE (Tacoma, Wash., now living in Woodinville, Wash.)

A founding father of organized youth lacrosse in the Tacoma area, Todd Thorpe’s vision and passion for the game of lacrosse in the South Sound helped build one of the state’s most successful regional youth lacrosse programs.

Todd cropped

Tacoma Youth Lacrosse Association founder Todd Thorpe helped build a burgeoning city youth team into one of the most successful youth lacrosse programs in the state serving elementary, middle and high school students throughout the South Sound. (Photo: Todd Thorpe)

As a student at Tacoma’s Bellarmine Prep, Thorpe was the state’s only prep lacrosse All-American as a 1998 senior while playing midfield and goal for neighboring Curtis High School, at the time the only prep lacrosse program among Tacoma schools.

That year Thorpe’s Vikings squad advanced to the state tournament, falling in the semifinals to eventual state runner-up Lakeside. With his success, he was selected to represent the State of Washington at the national North-South All-Star Game following his senior season.

Going on to a successful collegiate career at Whittier College from 1998 to 2002, Thorpe was a member of the Poet’s first squad as a varsity sport and eventually helped the school advance to the quarterfinal round of the NCAA Div. III tournament where they fell to the eventual 2002 national champion Middlebury College. A leader on and off the field, he was named the School’s Coach’s Award recipient as a senior.

Returning to the South Sound after college, Thorpe was approached by local parents looking for youth lacrosse opportunities for their kids while he was working for the Tacoma Department of Parks and Recreation.

Eventually, assembling a single team of mostly sixth graders, Thorpe’s initial team blossomed into a South Sound youth sports success story.

With Thorpe as the inspiration and driving force, the burgeoning Tacoma Youth Lacrosse Association quickly grew to 25 teams serving some 500 elementary and middle school boys and girls.  Along with regular league play, the group also sponsored some 20 skills clinics each year introducing the sport to new youth and the skill level of the sport among existing players to kids throughout the South Sound region.

With Thorpe’s non-profit vision encouraging successful youth programs to grow and replicate, TYLA has become a catalyst for new lacrosse programs serving throughout the South Sound.

Today, as a result of Thorpe’s vision and ground-work in the South Sound, more than 1,000 elementary, middle and high school girls have opportunities to play lacrosse on some 60 different teams from Tacoma, University Place, Lakewood and Gig Harbor to Vashon Island, Sumner, Puyallup and Lake Tapps.

A leader with the Washington State Chapter of US Lacrosse, Thorpe has served in many respected rolls including state events coordinator, high school state championships coordinator and is widely recognized as the public address voice of the Washington Lacrosse Boys State Championship Game.

For his efforts, Thorpe was recognized as the Washington State Chapter of US Lacrosse’s “Person of the Year” in 2006.

Still passionate about lacing up his cleats, Thorpe plays club lacrosse with the Crease Monkeys and Sasquatch team in the Pacific Northwest Lacrosse Association.

 

JAMIE ASAKA (Seattle)

A highly accomplished coach – one of the most successful in state history, and passionate educator, Lakeside School’s Jamie Asaka has been instrumental as a coach, educator and leader in girls lacrosse by shaping the student-athlete experience at virtually every level in the Washington state lacrosse community.

asaka

2013 Washington State Lacrosse Hall of Fame inductee Jamie Asaka hoists the championship trophy after winning the 2013 Washing Lacrosse Girls State Champion game. (Photo: Michael Jardine)

Since taking the helm of the Lakeside girls lacrosse program in 2004-05, Asaka’s record is among the elite of the state, winning 125 varsity games, while dropping just 15 on the way to an 89 percent winning percentage.

In nine years as head coach, Asaka has made eight trips to the Washington Lacrosse Girls State Championship game, winning six including the 2013 title.  Her coaching accomplishments include producing 10 All-Americans and 18 Academic All-Americans while 11 of her players have gone on the play collegiate lacrosse.

Growing up on Seattle’s Beacon Hill and member of Lakeside’s Class of 1996, Asaka was a three-year lacrosse player and won a state title as a senior on the Lions soccer team.

But it was her experience as a girls basketball manager during her junior and senior years that helped Asaka understand the building blocks of a champion and shape her path as an educator.

On the coat tails of legendary Lions basketball coach Sandy Schneider’s four 3A girls state basketball championships in six years, Asaka learned her craft while paired as team manager with one of the most accomplished girls basketball coaches in state history.

Observing the champion coach teach — instilling the importance of interpersonal relationships in school and beyond, how to take risks, overcome obstacles and set goals as a part of a wide range of school activities, profoundly affected Asaka’s views of teaching the whole student — and the athlete.

It was her time with Schneider along with the presence in her life of another Lakeside educator, the late T.J. Vassar, that helped frame who Asaka would become as a teacher, coach and contributor to the game of lacrosse in Washington state.  It was Vassar, who was the Diversity Director at the north Seattle private school and the Director of the Lakeside Education Enrichment Program (LEEP) and former Seattle School Board member, that helped broaden and shape her views of engaging diverse cultures in educational and athletic experiences.  He too instilled in Asaka the importance of teamwork and inclusivity.

Following high school, Asaka went on to a successful lacrosse career at Pitzer College – part of California’s Pomona-Pitzer College group.

At attack, Asaka was elected team captain in her junior and senior years and helped her team earn a berth among the final four schools in the women’s national tournament for club programs.

After earning a bachelor’s degree in Psychology and Asian-American Studies and later Masters degrees in Education and Social Work, Asaka embarked on her career in education.  A career that would eventually lead her back Seattle, Lakeside and the sport of lacrosse.

Landing first as a teacher in Chicago Public Schools, Asaka taught sixth grade and was tapped to start and coach a girls lacrosse program at North Side College Prep in 2000-01.

After finishing her teaching commitment in Chicago, Asaka returned to Seattle, to teach eighth grade social studies in the Seattle Public Schools and was eventually hired at Lakeside to coach middle school, soccer, basketball and lacrosse.

In her first year back at her alma mater, with too few students to fill-out the JV lacrosse squad, Asaka assisted then girls varsity head coach Lauren Schwartz before taking over the program the following year and guiding the Lions all the way to the state title game.

Among her contributions to the state lacrosse community are seven years (2005-11) of service on the Washington Schoolgirls Lacrosse Association board of directors as Division I representative, secretary and eventually vice president.

Following her fifth consecutive state title in 2010, Asaka was named Washington State High School Lacrosse Coach of the Year.  In the off-season, she also started the Puget Sound Select team in 2006 with friend and fellow Washington State Lacrosse Hall of Fame coach Tami Tommila.  As coaches of the state’s girls regional team, Asaka and Tomilla made two appearances in the US Lacrosse national tournament, winning the nation’s fourth division in 2013.

It is Asaka’s background as an educator and student among educator-coaches that has framed her intellectual approach to sport.  Her philosophy — that it’s not about winning.  That being a student-athlete requires balance and is only a piece – of their choosing — of the overall education experience, has been an inspiration and guide for many of her students and athletes throughout her career.

 

MAGGIE O’SULLIVAN (Seattle)

A respected official, player and innovator in helping the state officials’ organization keep pace with increasing demand for lacrosse umpires, Maggie O’Sullivan has been a driving force in the game’s success in Washington state.

OSullivan

Respected state girls lacrosse official Maggie O’Sullivan helped found Washington state’s girls lacrosse officials organization. (Photo: Maggie O’Sullivan)

One of the longest serving lacrosse officials in the state, O’Sullivan has presided over girls games for two decades – a record that includes nine state championship appearances.

Growing up in lacrosse-rich Connecticut where virtually every child has stick in hand from an early age, O’Sullivan came to Washington state to pursue a teaching career following her playing days in the 1980s at the Greenwich Academy and later Bowdoin College.

Excelling in the classroom and on the field, O’Sullivan earned a spot on the Greenwich varsity squad as a junior and senior where she helped propel the Gators to their league championship.

Later at Bowdoin, O’Sullivan earned roster spots on the Polar Bears field hockey, ice hockey and lacrosse teams, excelling in all three

But it was the persistence of Wesleyan athletic department mentor Patti Klecha-Porter, where O’Sullivan was coaching the Cardinals ice hockey and lacrosse squads while pursuing a Masters in Liberal Studies, that drew her to officiating.

Since coming to Washington state in 1995, O’Sullivan helped found the organization that is now known as the Washington Women’s Lacrosse Umpires Association (WWLUA), serving as president from 2010-12 along with liaison roles with the Washington Schoolgirls Lacrosse Association and Northwest Women’s Lacrosse Association.

She has served as a district-rated official for the past decade and presided over games in the Northwest Women’s Lacrosse Association for the past twenty years.

With WWLUA, O’Sullivan helped guide the group through one of the most intensive growth periods in state lacrosse history where the number of high school girls teams grew by over 200 percent from 11 – 35 over the past decade-and-a-half.

Faced with a limited adult pool from which to train officials, O’Sullivan drew from the inspiration of her high school coach at Greenwich Academyand National Lacrosse Hall of Fame inductee Angela Tammaro to tap into the state’s growing high school lacrosse community to fulfill growing demand for youth officials.

Employing Tammaro’s challenge to be a team player, good teacher and provide students and athletes with opportunities to succeed, O’Sullivan assisted with the growth of the state’s “Junior Officials” program.

Innovative and aggressive, the program tapped into growing availability of high school players looking to give back to the game of lacrosse.  The result has molded some 100 lacrosse officials with hopes that the girls will come back to the state following their playing careers to preside over games and train the next generation of referees.

As a player, O’Sullivan has consistently been a tough defender with Seattle Women’s Lacrosse teams since 1996 where they won seven league championships, in addition to multiple PNLA and western state titles.  Additionally, she has represented the Northwest at the national tournament five times.

In 2011, O’Sullivan was recognized with the prestigious Lorrie McKay Service Award for outstanding service and dedicated contributions to WWLUA.

 

STEPH TERRIEN (Seattle)

It’s a rare feat that someone without high school or collegiate training as a player soars in a sport, but for longtime coach, umpire and club lacrosse player, Steph Terrien, her passion and quick study of the game helped the former prep field hockey, softball and skiing standout reach great heights in Washington state – and beyond.

terrien

Steph Terrien helped found the popular Quick Stix lacrosse club on Seattle’s Queen Anne Hill. (Photo: Steph Terrien)

Since coming to the state in 1994, the three-sport star at the Cushing Academy in Massachusetts and Hartwick College graduate has been nothing but inspirational in the sport of lacrosse.

The Queen Anne resident’s coaching resume includes middle school stints with the Seattle Girls School and Queen Anne’s Quix Styx Lacrosse, a program that she helped found.

At the high school level, Terrien went on to coach six lacrosse programs over 17 years including stints with Forest Ridge, Bellevue, Garfield and Seattle Prep where she was named the Washington Schoolgirls Lacrosse Association coach of the year after winning the 2003 girls Division II state title.

Following her state title with the Panthers, Terrien was named head coach of the Danish National Team for the 2004 European Championships and 2005 European Newcomers Tournament.

A highly respected umpire in Washington state, Terrien also served as the Washington Women’s Lacrosse Umpires Association assigner and eventually president.

As a player, Terrien played for several local clubs including Laxon in the late 1990s and Seattle Women’s Lacrosse in the early 2000s.  She also served in state leadership roles including US Lacrosse, Washington State Chapter Board Representative, and co-created WALAX.com an online news magazine focusing on Northwest lacrosse clubs and athletes.

 

www.WashingtonHSLAX.com

Twitter Digg Delicious Stumbleupon Technorati Facebook Email
%d bloggers like this: