BERLIN- Worcester Prep Athletic Director and Assistant Head Master Matt O’Hare, who has played a major role in the development of lacrosse at every level on the Eastern Shore, last week was named the 2012 Lacrosse Man of the Year for Maryland’s Eastern Shore by U.S. Lacrosse.
U.S. Lacrosse, the governing body for the sport across the nation, last week named O’Hare the 2012 Man of the Year for Maryland’s Eastern Shore for his continuing efforts to pioneer the sport. O’Hare explained this week the Coaches Association picks the Man of the Year awardees for different regions each year for their contributions on and off the field.
“It’s an award they give out for someone who does not coach or play, but is involved in the lacrosse community,” he said. “It’s quite an honor and I was very pleased to be included. We’re always trying to promote lacrosse in other areas and at other schools and there are a lot of situations where you want to work together to make it better for everybody.”
O’Hare has been Athletic Director at Worcester Prep, formerly Worcester Country School, for decades and has also collected numerous Maryland Athletic Director of the Year during his several decades at the Berlin private school. For decades, he has been a pioneer for the sport on the Eastern Shore, where the lacrosse landscape looks very different now than it did when he first introduced the sport at Worcester.
“We started lacrosse at Worcester when no one else had it on the Eastern Shore,” he said. “We started with a sixth-grade team in 1979 when there were no other teams on the shore.”
O’Hare said Worcester had just the sixth-grade team in 1979 and for a few years after that until establishing a varsity program in 1982. One member of that early sixth-grade team, Mike Esham, went on to become an All-American and National Defenseman of the Year at Salisbury University. In those early days, the only other school playing lacrosse on Delmarva was Cape Henlopen and an early rivalry was formed. Otherwise, the Mallards found schools to play on the upper shore where lacrosse was gaining a foothold, or was forced to go across the Chesapeake to tradition-rich areas for lacrosse.