Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 7/6/11
Phillylacrosse.com creator and editor Chris Goldberg has been named the US Lacrosse Man of the Year for Southeastern Pennsylvania by the Eastern Pennsylvania Scholastic Lacrosse Association (EPSLA).
Goldberg founded Phillylacrosse.com in 2008. The website has gained a reputation as a leader in regional coverage for high school, college, pro and youth lacrosse in the Philadelphia area.
According to the US Lacrosse website, the Man of the Year award honors those individuals whose dedication, commitment, and support of the game and its ideals extend beyond his specific team. The EPSLA, which serves as the Philly region’s US Lacrosse Chapter, awards a Man of the Year and Coach of the Year each season. Haverford School’s John Nostrant was honored as Coach of the Year for leading his team to a 23-0 record and recognition as the boys’ national champion (see story). These awards are voted on by the 87 members of the EPSLA.
The Man of the Year award dates back to before the creation of U.S. Lacrosse in the 1970s.
EPSLA President Andy Hayes said Goldberg was honored due to his tireless pursuit of promoting lacrosse in the area, which has led to increased awareness and participation at all levels.
“It is a privilege to honor these recipients with these awards,” Hayes said “Both John and Chris are most deserving and our membership is proud to have them involved with our chapter.”
Goldberg was a middle school girls’ lacrosse coach for 10 years and a PIAA girls’ umpire for three years, before launching Phillylacrosse.com. A seasoned journalist who spent nine years reporting sports and news for suburban daily newspapers, he received his Master’s degree in education and began his second career as an educator in 1994. He gained a Doctorate in Education in 2005.
Goldberg started the site to marry his passions: writing, education and lacrosse.
“With my background in sports writing I saw creating the website as a way to help grow the sport in Philly,” he said. “Philadelphia was somewhat lost in between the Long Island and Baltimore hotbeds. Philly’s teams, coaches and players were not getting the recognition they deserved, so it seemed like the perfect opportunity.”
Goldberg first began covering men’s and women’s lacrosse in the early 1980s while a student reporter at the University of Delaware and later covered girls’ lacrosse while writing for newspapers in Lansdale and Pottstown.
He began to truly appreciate the dedication and commitment of the Philly coaches and players when he helped start a new program in the city of Coatesville as a teacher at Gordon Middle School in 1998.
”I fell in love with the sport while coaching and saw how it benefited so many young ladies that I coached,” he said. “I didn’t really know what I was doing at first and the girls were just learning, so we all learned the sport and the love of the sport together. The girls on that team actually inspired my love of lacrosse.”
Goldberg tries to make a point to include a student-athlete’s academic and service accomplishments as a key element in every story. The website has become known for recognizing student-athletes that go on to play lacrosse at the college level and follows them while playing in college. He also makes a point to employ interns, to give them an opportunity to learn and hone their craft as they begin their careers in journalism and communications.
Phillylacrosse.com has been and continues to be a strong supporter of the many lacrosse foundations in Philadelphia, such as Evanfest, HEADstrong, Katie Samson, Checking for Cancer, and the Travis Manion Foundation.
“We aren’t just a sports website,” said Goldberg. “Sure we cover games and report scores, but our region has a lot of lacrosse news to cover…our kids are outstanding people and leaders, they lead by example on our teams and in our communities, and they have great stories that we are honored to tell.
“With coaches like John Nostrant leading area teams our players can sure play the game. Just look at the national rankings this year – Haverford School and Conestoga are 1-2 or 1-3 in the boys’ polls. Girls’ programs like Radnor and Springfield-Delco have amazing reputations and probably no region has produced more women’s coaches at the Division I level than Philly.
“And we have more than a handful of Academic All Americans. Our region should be very proud of our lacrosse student athletes, coaches, supporters and lacrosse community.”
When asked about being named Man of the Year Goldberg said, “This is an incredible honor, one I find tremendously humbling. Having covered so many leaders and coaches, I tip my hat to the people in the trenches that have really built this city into a true lacrosse hotbed; one that rivals, Long Island, Baltimore and Upstate New York or anywhere else.
“Our success at Phillylacrosse.com would not have been possible without the support of the Philly lacrosse community, readers and our staff members and I thank them all. I must thank both the Philadelphia Lacrosse Association and the EPSLA as well as the Philadelphia Schoolgirls Lacrosse Association for their support. It is our privilege to cover this sport in this region, so please keep reading and telling us your stories.
“They are worth being heard.”
In three and a half years, Phillylacrosse.com has produced more than 5,500 articles. In 2008 Goldberg received both the Carole Wakefield Award and “General Jack” Linehan Award for covering high school girls’ and boys’ lacrosse by the Philadelphia Lacrosse Association.
“I’m proud of the site and what we have accomplished, and I look forward to continuing to cover lacrosse in the Philly region,” Goldberg said. “I’m honored, humbled and now driven even more to make the region and everyone involved in the sport proud, and to continue to cover the region’s No. 1 sport in the nation’s hotbed.”