By Chris Goldberg
Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 7/31/11
Former Philadelphia indoor and outdoor professional player Jon Torpey, the head coach at first-year Division I program High Point University (N.C.), has made it his business to recruit in the Philly region.
During an interview with Phillylacrosse.com, the former top assistant at Dartmouth noted his continued interest in Philly players. Already, he has bagged five from the region – recent grads Vince Garman (Haverford School defenseman), Brad James (St. Joseph’s Prep attackman) and Benny Biaicco (Garnet Valley defenseman, spending one year as a post graduate) as well as rising seniors Joseph Taulane (Garnet Valley midfielder) and Ben Hughes (Great Valley defenseman).
“It’s just an area of the country where as a coach you want to focus on,” said Torpey. “There are more and more great kids there. They have a chip on their shoulder and they have great coaching.”
Torpey has a strong background as an assistant coach. He was an assistant at Denver for six years – the final four as Associate Head Coach – and spent last year as the top assistant a Dartmouth. As a player, he was a member of the Philadelphia Barrage on their 2006 championship team and also played two seasons with the Philadelphia Wings.
He said he immediately targeted Philly to bring in hard-nosed players to build with and also is encouraging transfers to consider High Point. In all Torpey announced he is bringing in 17 freshmen.
“There are a lot of fantastic coaches in Philly and kids that have those Midwest values of working hard and sinking your teeth into something,” Torpey said. “We were looking for good people, first and foremost. We want great character kids that want to work hard and get their foot in the door. Philly kids have a tremendous amount of drive.
“I am extremely happy with this first class. I love these kids; they are fantastic players. It’s going to be hard coming in with all these challenges, but they all know if they put the time in it will be an extremely rewarding experience.”
Torpey will run a normal season in 2011-12, but cannot play intercollegiate games until 2012-13. The Fall Ball campaign will include practices and games with post collegiate clubs.
“We will play post collegiate clubs and have upscale practices with college teams,” he said. “We’ll see if we can practice with some MLL teams to keep the guys focused and hungry. It will be run like a D1 program with everything minus the games.
“We’ll work on the academic side and also on community service. It will be a really intense environment to acclimate themselves to school.”