By Chris Goldberg
Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 12/10/12
When John McEvoy stepped down as Malvern Prep lacrosse coach in 2009, he admitted it was with some regret, but a necessary step due to his need to spend more time with his family.
So, when McEvoy was announced as the replacement for his second successor last week, he had trouble holding back his joy.
“I am very excited and anxious to get going,” he said. “I still work in admissions and this is the height of the season.
“But I feel like I am sort of picking up where I left off. I am very happy to get back to it. I’ll have a lot of help and some good guys coaching with me.
“It was hard to stay away,” he said. “I was lucky enough to re-arrange some things at school and at home. My wife and family and the people at school have been very accommodating.”
McEvoy replaces David Metzbower, who left after two seasons to take an assistant position with defending NCAA Division I champion Loyola. Metzbower had replaced Dan Keating, who spent one year as McEvoy’s top assistant and one year as head coach before also moving to college coaching (now an assistant at St. Joseph’s).
Not surprisingly, McEvoy admitted that the Friars – who struggled last year with an 8-10 record – have had its ups and downs while adjusting to three coaches in four years. But his presence should bring stability.
In his six years as head coach, the Friars compiled a record of 116-24. Those years included five Inter-Ac championships and one state title as well as two Eastern State Pennsylvania Scholastic Lacrosse Association (EPSLA) second-place finishes. In 2005 McEvoy was named Eastern Pennsylvania’s Coach of the Year.
“They have had some real good coaches (the past three years),” he said. “I think changing coaches this much has been hard for these guys. Hopefully, they don’t have to worry about that now.
“We have a deep and a pretty strong senior class. That’s the class I brought into Malvern and I was very excited for them as 8th graders coming into 9th grade. We have some real (good players).
“I think they are followed up by a really good junior class, so we have some potential here.”
McEvoy said it’s tough to make any predictions for the 2013 season.
Clearly, the team’s fate partly is in the health of senior goalie and Virginia signee Matt Barrett, an All-American who is recovering from a torn anterior cruciate ligament and may miss the beginning of the season.
Still, 10 other Friar seniors have committed to D1 colleges and five more in the junior and sophomore classes have committed to D1 schools. So the talent is there.
“It would be kind of unfair to place any expectations when I haven’t seen them play much,” McEvoy said. “I watched them a little more last year, and I talked to Metzy quite a bit.
“We have a ton of depth so we’ll have to be quick studies and figure them out quickly – and vice versa. My sense is that they are very disappointed in last year and very motivated.”
McEvoy was inducted in the Pennsylvania Lacrosse Hall of Fame in 2007, McEvoy had a stellar career before becoming a successful coach. A lacrosse MVP, he graduated from Malvern Prep in 1986 after being named All-State as well as a High School All-American and the Inter-Ac League’s “Most Important Player”.
At Villanova, McEvoy quickly earned recognition and was named the team’s “Rookie of the Year”. Over four years, he was two-time MVP. When he graduated in 1990 he was the Wildcat’s leading scorer. In 2008 Villanova inducted McEvoy into the Varsity Club Hall of Fame.
He then played club lacrosse for the Eagle’s Eye and Philadelphia/MAB Paints Lacrosse Clubs through the 1990s when he was selected five times to the club all-star team.
In addition, McEvoy played professionally for the Philadelphia Wings of the NLL from 1991 to 2002. As a member of the Wings he was an All-Star, the league’s Unsung Player and, modeling strong leadership skills, also served as team captain.
McEvoy is currently serving as the Assistant Director of Admissions and teacher of social studies at Malvern Prep. In 2006 he was inducted into the Malvern Prep Hall of Fame.
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