Sparta coach carries her passion for lacrosse into camp

| 05 Jun 2018 | 06:26

By Laurie Gordon
— The spring lacrosse season is coming to a close, but for those who just love LAX (as it's affectionately called) it's time to look for a summer camp. Sparta High School English teacher and Head Lacrosse Coach, Kate Brennan, has, for a number of years, run a very successful one called Sparta Girls Lacrosse Camp, based on the simple philosophy of having an undying passion for the sport.
John Major, who founded The Kittatinny Youth Lacrosse Club said, “It's fantastic to find others who have such enthusiasm for our sport. Brennan pours her heart and soul into lacrosse and in helping the kids she coaches reach their full potential.”
Brennan discovered lacrosse as a freshman at LeMoyne College, in Syracuse, New York, where she was on scholarship to play basketball. She began her lacrosse career as Head Coach at Kent Place School, in Summit, New Jersey, and eventually went on to start the girls program here at Sparta, when she was hired as Head Coach in 2003, and then an English Teacher at Sparta in 2004.
"When I was a little girl I loved basketball,” she said. “I carried my basketball to school, spent hours every day at the park, working on my shooting, committed myself to a daily ball handling routine I did in the garage (while listening to Whitney Houston), and even slept with my basketball some nights. It was, to say the very least, my passion."
The summer before eighth grade her parents allowed her to attend basketball camp in Mount Pocono, Pennsylvania.
"That one week changed my life," she said. "It was a place where I was surrounded by other girls who loved basketball, where we could learn new and interesting things about the game that brought us all together, and where I met my first college basketball players, who opened my eyes to the possibilities that basketball had to offer me down the road, if I worked hard enough.”
Brennan said that that camp gave her drirection and purpose and was the first of many sports camps that would enrich her life.
“That is why I run camps now, because I want to give girls a chance to become a part of something bigger than them, to discover that wonderful passion for a sport that can enrich their lives forever,” she said, “I will always be a basketball player, because basketball is in my heart, and I have basketball to thank for lacrosse, as it was a teammate on my basketball team in college that suggested I give lacrosse a try. Once I did, I was hooked and I am a firm believer that once your kids try lacrosse, they will be hooked too. And lacrosse camp is the perfect place to get the ball rolling. Give us the chance and maybe our camp can be for you what that Pocono Mountain basketball camp was for me, life changing."
Major said, “It's amazing the similarities between basketball and lacrosse. When we find out that one of our players also plays basketball, we tell them, 'Remember what you learn on the court because you can use it on the lacrosse field.' To this end, it's no wonder Brennan's love of basketball parleyed into a love of lacrosse.”
Brennan's believes "Love what you do and always give it all you've got, don't be afraid to take chances, push yourself, and be thankful for your teammates each and every day."
In her mind lacrosse is a gift.
"Some of the most special people I have met in my life have been players on my lacrosse team,” she said. “Each year a new group of girls inspires me to be better, to work harder, and I am proud to have the very good fortune to call myself their coach."
Sparta Girls Lacrosse Camp will be held July 9-13 from 9 am to 2 pm at Feldner Field on West Mountain Road in Sparta. Girls don't have to be from Sparta to attend. To register, visit: and for information, call Brennan at (862) 258-5764.