Dean has played and coached lacrosse for over 10 years, beginning when his son started playing in 6th grade at Willow Creek. His son later played for Mayo High School and St. Cloud State. Currently, Dean is the Mayo High School girls’ assistant coach and has coached boys’ teams up to the college level. He even plays for some charity league lacrosse teams. Being very involved in the lacrosse community, Dean made a lot of connections, which led him to become a backup goalie for the Hastings semi-pro box lacrosse team. “Because I had just started playing box goalie, I was looking for jerseys, which are very very large and the Hastings ones looked really cool. I’m friends with the general managers of the team and asked them to buy me jerseys as part of their big team order. No problemo, I was “in.” Yup, just for the jerseys. I even did some practices with them, just to get experience.”
Little did Dean know that only one of the three goalies could play in their first game. Then, the fourth-string goalie tore his MCL, which left Dean to be the backup goalie. He was excited about this but thought for sure the team wouldn’t actually need him to play. However, one of the starters experienced a severe ankle roll, and the team called on Dean. “Like a bad Will Ferrell movie, I bought the jersey in the gift shop and ended up the starter...I somehow succeeded. That put me fourth in the league for goalies, at the time.” That led Dean to playing in a following game during the season and in the championship game in Denver. His team took second!
When asked about what he loves about being a member at the DAHLC, Dean says, “I’d love to say that the wealth of equipment was a huge draw, and that I was incredibly diligent about pumping iron and having a chiseled body of a god. But, alas, no. I love the facility and spend most of my time walking on the track, late at night. I love the staff and the accessibility, but my favorite part is the accountability and the appeal of saving money if I go to the gym more.” With this competitive attitude, Dean continues to increase his visit count at the DAHLC each year to beat his previous numbers, and he hit 200 visits last year!
He wasn’t expecting much when he got into all of this, and he got to do so much more than he had imagined for himself. With Dean being a parent, he comically ended by stating, “It’s never too late to really put yourself in jeopardy and make your kids either proud of you, or doubt your sanity, or both.”
Thank you so much for sharing your encouraging story with us, Dean! Keep up the lacrosse victories!