James C. Metzger
Chairman & CEO
No Season, But Something to Look Back On.
Hempstead PAL Lacrosse, as with all sports at all levels, was
required to cancel its spring practices and games earlier this
year due to the COVID-19 virus. This came as a huge
disappointment for the team’s fourth, fifth and sixth graders.
The 22 kids on the roster were excited and ready to learn the
game and, for some, play it competitively for the first time.
The Tigers are part of the Nassau-Suffolk County Police Athletic
Lacrosse League. The nine-year Hempstead program, led by Coach
Alan Hodish, has introduced the game to more than 100 African-
American and Hispanic youngsters, several of whom are from
Alan is a longtime friend of mine. He is a Garden City attorney
and a revered former lacrosse and football coach at Hempstead
High School. He has cherished every opportunity to coach and
teach lacrosse on Long Island. Recently, with his induction into
the Long Island Metropolitan Lacrosse Hall of Fame, Alan has been
recognized for his decades of dedication to our student-athletes.
Hempstead PAL Lacrosse also has the commitment of Coach
Bernard Williams and former high school players, and other Long
Island lacrosse standouts who serve as assistant coaches, role
models, communicators, and friends for the kids in the
program. The team enjoyed several practices during the early
spring before the crises paused the program. Only last month,
once approved by the village, was the team allowed to gather for
a handful of practices and learning sessions.
I have been involved with the program since its inception,
providing the support required for these great kids to learn and
enjoy a fantastic game. While the on-field activities stopped for a
while, I did not pause my commitment to support Alan and the
others as they continue to strengthen the program to welcome
more young players.
In honor of Alan’s ongoing devotion to the game and this specific
program, an additional $10,000 has been donated to Hempstead
PAL Lacrosse. My gift guarantees continued support of team
operations, equipment, uniforms, expenses for officials and league
registration, and an awards presentation at the end of each
season. Even if these youngsters do not pursue lacrosse in high
school, college, or professionally, the lessons, teamwork, and
camaraderie surely will be a positive experience that the
players will carry with them for the rest of their lives.
It has been a tough handful of months for these kids, and for all of
us. I want the 2020 Hempstead PAL team to know that Alan and
the other coaches will ensure that this season’s disappointment will
be converted into a valuable lifetime lesson for each of them.