Gorilla Lax is a non-profit lacrosse training organization. Highly competitive club teams and the best instructional training available. Locations in Newton & North Andover, MA. Gorilla is devoted to providing ALL student athletes superior coaching, innov

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Superior Coaching

Steve Connolly:                    

Hall of Fame Coach - Steve Connolly:

Recognized as one of New England's greatest Coaches of all time.  Steve has built successful lacrosse programs at every level of the game.  He has helped Youth, High School, College and Professional players to reach their full potential.

New England Lacrosse Hall of Fame (Class of 1997)

Massachusetts Lacrosse Hall of Fame (Inaugural member)

"Man of the Year" - 3X Award winner - U.S. Lacrosse Association (MA)

"Coach of the Year" - 2X Award winner - U.S. Lacrosse Association (MA) 

Boston Blazers - Professional Indoor Lacrosse Team 

University of Massachusetts (Lowell) -  Holds University record for the most wins

Billerica Lacrosse - Founder of High School and youth programs

North Andover Lacrosse - Founder of High School and youth programs

"Peak Performance" Lacrosse Camp (instructional camp) - Founder

"Peak 200" - The Premier College Recruiting Camp in New England - Field Director

Jim Connolly -

 

Professional Lacrosse Player (MLL) 2010-Present - Jim Connolly:

Major League Lacrosse All-Star Team: Boston Cannons & Ohio Machine

Jim is one of the most prolific goal scorers in the history of the game. From 2001-'04, Jim set the world record for most goals scored in a High School career while playing for North Andover High School's Varsity Lacrosse team.

In college, Jim made an immediate impact at the University of Massachusetts (Amherst), becoming one of the team’s leading scorers as a freshman, while helping to lead UMass to the NCAA National Championship game.  Jim was named to the All American Team, First Team All-Conference (2X) and Conference Player of the year.  He finished his college career by becoming the only player in UMass history to score at least once in every game that he played and was named “Mr. Clutch” by Inside Lacrosse magazine.

In 2015, Jim was selected as one of New England’s “Top 20 Lacrosse Players of All Time” by New England Lacrosse Journal.

As a Coach:

Jim has always had a strong belief in giving back to the game by coaching today’s future Lax Stars. He takes pride in the fact that the world record he set for goal scoring in high school was eventually broken by one of the players he trained and mentored - Grant Whiteway. Jim learned to coach alongside his legendary father, Steve Connolly. Jim has experience coaching at the High school, youth and club levels.  

In 2015, Jim was voted by his coaching peers throughout to coach the Mass Bay Youth Lacrosse Select All-Star team.

Jim has mentored youth from 8 to 18 years old and he’ s developed a cutting edge coaching philosophy - customized so players get the appropriate skills based upon their age and level of experience.  Jim always strives to motivate players to play at each of their full individual potential.

Josh Coveleski -

 

Professional Lacrosse Player (Major League Lacrosse & National Lacrosse League (box) 2012-Present

PhD in Higher Education

  •  4 year MLL Veteran
  • NLL Veteran - Professional Indoor Box lacrosse player
  • 2010 FIL World Lacrosse Championship’s Leading Scorer, Manchester England
  • Duke University D-1 Varsity 4 years
  • All-ACC Academic Team,  representing Duke University
  • Lowes Senior Class Award Nominee, Nations most prestigious student athlete award
  • All-time leading scorer in the state of Delaware 

Erik Smith - 

Professional Lacrosse Player (Major League Lacrosse) Boston Cannons (2013-Present)

  • U.S. Air Force Officer

  • U.S. Air Force Academy Gaduate

  • First Air Force player ever drafted by Major League Lacrosse

  • Mr. Ground Ball: Lead Air Force in GB's freshman year

  • All-ECAC Team

  • Air forces offensive MVP

 

Danny Hettler -

As a Player:

  • Professional Box Lacrosse Player (2012, 2013)    
  • International Goodwill Travel Team- Global Player of Year Award
  • Fairfield University – Div.1 

As a Coach:

  • Boston College- Offensive coordinator
  • Founder of Pink Whales Foundation
  • Founder of Pink Whales/Vineyard Vines Lacrosse Team

Dan is one of the most sought after coaches both for his lacrosse experience and as a role model for today’s youth.

He’s now been coaching in the New England area for the last decade – Dan’s coached town youth programs, select and club teams as well as High School programs.  In 2010, Dan was selected “Coaching staff of the year” in New Hampshire where he helped coach Derry field to its 1st New Hampshire State Championship.

Hailing from upstate New York, Dan possesses a superior lacrosse IQ.  He applies a hybrid of box & field lacrosse techniques that thrive off of unsettled situations and provides for an explosive offense. Dan’s ability to breakdown the fundamental skills of the game and present them in an age appropriate manner has made him one of the area’s highly sought after youth lacrosse Coaches.

Dan is also the founder of the non- profit, Pink Whales Foundation - a lacrosse focused charitable giving organization. The foundation engages young people to increase their involvement in the community through paying it forward, which in turn increases the positive visibility of our sport and amplifies the "lacrosse” image. Dan’s view is that student athletes should be exemplary citizens, students, and athletes - in that order.  Additionally, Dan was awarded the National Medal of Merit Award.

Grant Whiteway Jr. -

 “Mr. Lacrosse” ESPN BOSTON - "It is fitting that Grant is our first "Mr. Lacrosse" winner as he serves as a terrific ambassador to both his community and the game - There is no finer example of a player who embodies the qualities of skill and leadership.”

Grant rewrote the record books.  He broke the state and national scoring records while in High School –  records that were previously set by his shooting coach - Jim Connolly.  Grant is one of the most prolific scorers to ever step onto a High School Lacrosse field.  He finished his High school career with an unbelievable 539 points (353 Goals & 186 Assists).

  • Two time All American while in High school
  • Division 1 College Lacrosse Scholarship player

As a Coach:

The student now becomes a teacher. This recent college graduate is a highly sought after shooting instructor. He possesses the ability to articulate shooting form and technique like very few coaches can.  His aptitude for breaking down the mechanics of shooting and explaining the game on a fundamental level to todays youth is truly a gift. 

Joe Reale -

 

As a Player:

  • Captain at the University of Massachusetts (2009 - NCAA Tournament Team)
  • NSCA All-American 2009 Strength and Conditioning Athlete of the Year
  • New England Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association- Scholar Athlete Team
  • Heart & Soul Award Winner - University of Massachusetts  
  • Only player in School History to go from “walk on” to team captain under UMass Coach Cannella (20 plus years)

As a Coach:

University of Massachusetts (UMass) Amherst Div 1- Defensive and Face-Off Coach

8 plus years as a youth lacrosse coach - Newton Select, Lincoln Sudbury and various club programs

Joe Reale brings more to the game then just X’s and O’s.  He focuses on teaching today’s youth that with hard work and desire - anything is possible.