HomeNewsBoys’ team thrives with guidance from former professional lacrosse player as head coach

Boys’ team thrives with guidance from former professional lacrosse player as head coach

Published April 3, 2024

BY CASSIDY SCHEID

This season Carmel High School’s boys’ lacrosse program has a new head coach, Troy Loper, who made it to the Division-I level without his own school having a lacrosse team and whose passion for the sport is evident.

Loper’s lacrosse journey began when he started playing with a local club team in Seaside in elementary school. Despite Seaside High School not having a lacrosse team, he was able to advance his skills by playing on his own, and then continued in college with a scholarship to the University of California, Santa Barbara. He also played at Cleveland State University before getting drafted to the National Lacrosse League, and played for the San Diego Seals. The athlete began coaching during college and has since coached various club teams in the area including Monterey Tribe Lacrosse and the Bixby Ballers Lacrosse in Monterey.

Troy Loper is beginning his first season as Carmel’s boys’ lacrosse head coach and is well fit for the job with D-I and professional lacrosse experience. (photo by CASSIDY SCHEID)

“What makes me want to be a coach is the great coaches that I’ve had that have inspired me to be a better person,” Loper says, “and to help the youth not only continue to play this game, but to develop a passion for it and just generally be a better person, which I was taught through sports.”

As a coach, he makes an effort to be supportive towards players while keeping high expectations, allowing for players to make mistakes freely and improve.

“Troy’s a chill coach,” senior capitan Bode Stoddard says. “He doesn’t get angry, he likes to solve problems, and he has a lot of experience playing D-I and professional, so he’s a really good coach.”

Helping to create a positive atmosphere, the coach’s calm demeanor and laidback coaching style allows athletes to improve while still having a good time. The team’s connection with each other is clear and also contributes to this positive environment.

“A lot of guys are friends outside of the sport, and that creates the chemistry in play,” Loper says. “I think we’re well connected as a team.” 

Coach Loper sees the work put in during practice reflected in game, and as of March 28, the team was first in the PCAL Mission Division with a record of 6-0 in league and 7-1 overall. 

The coach describes the team’s players with pride, as a group of hardworking individuals who give it their best in order to improve during practice.

“I try to preach 100% effort,” Loper says. “If you go hard and give it all you got, then that’s perfect.”

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