By Monique Boateng, Claire Hughto, Cole Doherty, & Liam Hennessey
“I’m not looking to improve his performance, I’m looking to match it,” said Mr. Lawrence about the previous bocce coach, Mr. Sutherland. Mr. Lawrence, a 10th and 12th grade English teacher, has taken on the challenge of coaching the B-CC bocce team for the first time this year.
It seems uncanny for a two time state championship winning team to have an amauteur as their coach. “This is my first year coaching bocce, in fact, I’ve never played it before.” He added nervously while fidgeting in his chair.
When Mr. Sutherland left, Mr. Lawrence felt driven by his love for coaching to step in and take Mr. Sutherland’s place. After being a coach for the allied softball team, Mr. Lawrence decided that the thrilling experience was enough to encourage him to coach bocce as well.
Considering Mr. Sutherland was a state winning coach, Mr. Lawrence admits that he has big shoes to fill. Not only is the rookie coach faced with emulating the success of a previous coach, but Mr. Lawrence also has to accumulate more players for the team this year. Additionally, physicals form a problem for Mr. Lawrence as he relies heavily on students to complete these forms and hand them into him. Students are already so busy with school it’s hard to get forms filled out.
The athletes playing are a diverse group of people with different talents and abilities that contributes to the team. With help from senior Rachael Rabinovitz, and junior Elizabeth Budin, the B-CC Bocce team looks like they’re heading into another successful season. “The seniors are excited and anxious to start the season,” said Mr Lawrence in an uplifting manner. Despite all the pressure, Mr. Lawrence maintains a positive attitude.“I enjoy what I’m doing…Working with kids keeps me young and helps me enjoy life,” he added with a chuckle.
An ambitious yet amped Mr. Lawrence hopes to “do the position justice and not let kids down.”