By Craig Forsythe
Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 10/18/11
Former assistant John Kurek has been named head boys’ lacrosse coach at Hatboro-Horsham.
Kurek, who helped start the program in 2001 and served as an assistant under former head coach Dave Sowers from 2001-2010, played lacrosse at King’s College.
Kurek inherits a team that finished 10-10 and advanced to the second round of the District 1 tournament last year while finishing second in the Suburban One Continental Conference under J.P. Banks.
Kurek gave these comments about being named head coach.
What are your goals for the team during the 2012 season?
Kurek: “My Goal for the Hatters’ lacrosse team this year is to be a contender in the conference and to be competitive through the District playoffs.”
What are your coaching philosophies? (Yelling and ‘ra-ra’ type, calm and collected, stern, laidback)
Kurek: “I have a combination of coaching philosophies. I start out calm and collective to show the players that you need to be calm and confident in intense situations. But, at the same time, I am a bit ‘old school’ stern in such a way that I always tell my players that whatever you want to get out of a program or season, you need to put in that much work and effort to get there.”
What were you able to learn being an assistant to Dave Sowers for all those years?
“I learned a variety of things from Dave Sowers. He is a great friend and mentor of mine. For nine years we had teams full of talent where we could really open up a playbook and then there were years that we had to put our kids in the best places where we thought they would succeed. But what I truly valued was that if you prepare the players for each game with a plan in mind, they can play their game confident instead of doubting themselves.”
What do you anticipate being the hardest part transitioning from assistant coach to head coach?
“I’m not sure yet what will be the toughest part of going from an assistant coach to head coach. It feels like this question is something I could answer after the season.”
Since you know most of the kids already, will you attempt to coach in a similar fashion to that of coach Sowers or do you intend to change things up?
Kurek: “I do know most of the kids already, they are a great bunch. Dave and I have a few ideas in our philosophies that are the same and a few ideas that are different. I believe that is what kept us on our toes and we challenged each other, it made it fun for us. When the season starts the kids are going to see my coaching style and the system I like to run. It does include some things that Dave believed but my style is unique, just like any other coach.”
Do you believe this team has everything it needs to win?
Kurek: “The team includes veteran players of previous teams that went to district and state playoffs. It has kids who are also eager to earn spots on the team to contribute. But what I have already told them is they have what it takes to be winners, but they need to put a ton of work into it to get there.”
What is your main goal at this point in the offseason?
Kurek: “My main goal in this off season is too build chemistry and prepare their bodies through the off season conditioning program.”