GLEN ELLYN — Armed with a vast background in the sport, Dave Libby has taken over the Glenbard Lacrosse Club this fall.
Libby spent the past five years at Wheaton College and, before that, had coaching stints at West Chicago, Wheaton Academy, St. Charles and Hinsdale Central.
He inherits a program with 38 athletes, 13 from Glenbard South and 11 apiece from Glenbard North and Glenbard East. There are also individual players from Wheaton Warrenville South, South Elgin and Streamwood.
“I like the team, I like the composition of the team,” Libby said. “We are heavy in seniors.”
Part of Libby’s task is to tweak the mindset of his players, who have differing levels of experience with the sport of lacrosse.
“Like a lot of lacrosse teams, when you start out you have some powerful athletes,” the coach said. “They drive it down and use their athleticism to score. We call it immature lacrosse because you are solely relying on your best athletes.
“The first step is to change the thinking of our team, from an athletically-driven program to a skills-driven program.”
The program has two teams, a varsity squad which Libby calls the “performance level” and the JV team which is the “developmental level.” Players will move up and down accordingly.
“I’d like to see every player on the team improve their individual abilities as much as they can,” he said. “The goal is to have them at the right place on the field, at the right time, doing the right thing. If you have 10 guys on the field doing that, it is beautiful to watch.”
Another major emphasis of the club, which has designs on being a year-round organization, is to prepare players for the next level.
“That’s our primary goal,” the coach said. “Every kid can play lacrosse in college. We want kids to come back and say that they had the best time playing with us but that they are having a blast playing in college.”
Libby is extremely appreciative of the support he has already received.
“We’ve got a great stage and we have four great stadiums we play at,” he said of the three high schools and Benedictine University in Lisle. And the parent administration group is the best I’ve ever seen and I’ve had some great parent administration groups. They are doing a great job.”