Last weekend, I attended the 200th anniversary of Hamilton College in upstate New York. I graduated from Hamilton in 1978 as part of its last all male class. Much has changed at Hamilton during the last 34 years. There are new buildings, improved facilities, bigger trees and in 2008 the college won its first NCAA championship — fittingly in a women’s sport, women’s lacrosse. During the last decade, Coach Patty Kloidt has built one of the top Division III women’s lacrosse programs in the country. In addition to winning a national title, her teams have appeared in three NCAA semifinals and two championship games in the past five years. Coach Kloidt has won almost 80% of her games at Hamilton and a dozen of her players have been named All-Americans.
Needless to say, Coach Kloidt has been able to recruit some of the best lacrosse players in the country to come to Hamilton. It is a good guess that most, if not all, the girls who have played at Hamilton during the past few years have enjoyed much success in multiple sports during their youth, high school and college athletic careers.
So as I walked through Hamilton’s new athletic facility last Saturday morning, I came upon the bulletin board for the women’s lacrosse team just down the hall from where their national championship trophy is displayed. In addition to notes about practice schedules and conditioning, there was this note from Coach Kloidt to her players. It is a message that is valuable for boys and girls of any age in any sport. Indeed, it is a message that transcends sports and is a good reminder for all of us in whatever we do. — Dan Barr