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January 5, 2012 5:35 pm

2012 European Lacrosse Championships Has Israeli Team Excited

avatar by Levi Epstein

Lacrosse Head. Picture: koobert

An up and coming nation in the sport of lacrosse – a game that has grown in popularity on a global scale over the last couple of decades – Israel’s national team has high expectations for the 2012 European Championship in Amsterdam.  A newly formed coaching staff  has been selected to help lead the team at their upcoming international debut.

Pete Ginnegar, Jon Barocas and Mark Greenberg will serve as assistant coaches, joining head coach Bill Beroza on the Israeli bench, while Chaka Bainbridge has been named Director of Player Personnel.

Ginnegar, who is currently serving in his eighth season as head coach at Claremont College, has a wide range of collegiate coaching experience in his 29-year-career. He previously coached at Cornell, and Ohio State, as well as stints with Babson, and Wake Forest.

Barocas currently serves as the Director of College Scouting for the Denver Outlaws, a Major League Lacrosse team based in Colorado. He has coached 31 High School All-Americans, including players who have participated on eight NCAA Championship teams.

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Greenberg, a 1998 inductee to the US Lacrosse National Hall of Fame, helped guide Johns Hopkins’ team to perhaps the finest four-year period in school history as they posted a staggering 51-4 record during his reign.

“As a developing lacrosse nation, we’re thrilled with the wealth of experience our coaching staff brings to the table as we make our international debut,” said Israel GM Howard Borkan. “This is the right group to develop players they can make an impact in Israel for years to come. It’s truly a luxury to have them all on board.”

The association also announced Shelley Sheiner as head coach of the Jerusalem Lacrosse team, while Barocas will lead the Tel Aviv club. The two teams will compete against each other in an exhibition schedule in Israel following the European Championships.

Sheiner, who is currently serving in his eighth season as head coach at Kean University, has gradually improved the team during his tenure, posting five-straight 10-plus win seasons and capturing the ECAC Championship last year.

The team is made up mostly of young Americans who made Aliya to Israel from the states.  Bringing their passion along with them to the Holy Land, they appear to be gifted and promising, and as excitement for the upcoming tournament increases, the players continue to work out and practice as they get ready for the big stage.

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