Utah Prime Signs On As An Adrenaline Affiliate
Adrenaline is proud to announce its newest affiliate based out of Salt Lake City, Utah Prime. This newly formed club program will enter the 2015 Fall/Winter season with seven teams: four at the high school level, two at the middle school level and one U-13 team. The goal is to pull the most dedicated, hard working and talented athletes from the entire state in order to showcase the collective talent from the state of Utah within each age group. “The talent in the state of Utah is not deep enough at this point in time where we can afford to divide it across different clubs”, says Club Founder and Director, Nick Gradinger. “I’m excited at the prospect of connecting the most dedicated, knowledgeable coaches in the state with the premier athletes of each region under one umbrella.”
Gradinger, a San-Diego Native with five years of DI College Lacrosse experience (Cornell ’05- ’09 where he was All Ivy-League with 2 final four appearances, and Captain at University of Denver under legendary coach Bill Tierney) possesses 10 years of coaching experience at the high school and club level. The successful programs he has helped found and contribute to over the years include: RC Starz Lacrosse Club, perennial west coast powerhouse Torrey Pines High School, Utah Blackhawks, Park City High School (where he was recently name the head coach after being named Assistant Coach of the Year by the UHSLL in 2015), and Utah Elite.
Behind every storied club director is a team of motivated and knowledgeable coaches. “I’m thrilled with the staff we have assembled in our first year of operation. You cannot have a truly elite club comprised of the state’s best young players without providing them with the absolute best coaching staff. Our staff in year one is comprised of a half dozen former DI and DIII players, many of which were all league, possessed final four experience, and even won DI National Championships. We were able to pull in the best coaches from the most prominent club and school affiliated entities in the state, a number of whom have played integral roles in advancing the game forward in the past five years”.
Brad Lavoie, offensive coordinator for recently dubbed Division II Westminster College, will play an integral role in shaping their offensive instruction administered for Utah Prime players. “I’m thrilled that Brad Lavoie has joined the program and will be heading the offensive programming for all age levels. As far as high level offensive instruction goes, Brad is leaps and bounds above anyone else in the state and I consider him one of the best offensive minds in the western US,” says Gradinger, clearly excited about the potential impact this staff can have on the developing athletes in the club. “The energy he brings every single day to practice is such an unbelievable complement to his extensive knowledge and playing background. Brad and I have been working religiously to develop offensive and defensive programming that will be delivered at every age group so the entire Utah Prime program is operating the same systems on both sides of the ball.”
While Gradinger is the Founder/Director of Utah Prime, he is quick to admit that the program would not be possible without the help and cooperation of several key members of the Utah lacrosse community. He credits Mike Isbell and the Utah Blackhawks organization as well as Jason Matheny, Dan Mannix and the rest of the Utah Elite staff for their cooperation, understanding, and support moving forward with the Prime organization. The programs and their respective staffs are working together for the common purpose of furthering Utah lacrosse and the opportunities for their players rather than competing for talent. Gradinger says, “The goal moving forward, and we’ve already begun doing this, is to ensure that we are communicating with every local club across the state to provide their best players with the opportunity to play with the rest of the state’s best and provide them with the recruiting opportunities they deserve.”
The recruiting opportunities and coaching connections will increase exponentially with the newly formed partnership between Adrenaline and the Utah Prime. As an affiliate, the program and its players will get plugged in to the most proven recruiting system in the west and will gain exclusive access to individual and team recruiting events such as Black Card, Boys Showcase, High Rollers, and team events such as the Challenge and Elite Shootout. Utah Prime players will also qualify to try out for the highly touted West Coast Starz Club Program in which teams travel back east twice a year to compete in the nation’s top team recruitment tournaments. The collegiate exposure that Adrenaline affiliate club members gain is second to none, and this is only the beginning of what the Utah Prime staff hopes to turn into a pipeline coming out of the state.
When Dan Mannix, who will also be joining the Prime coaching staff, was asked his opinion on the new program he plenty to share: “Over the last 7-8 years, I have coached with the Utah Starz, Utah Elite, Rocky Mountain Starz and West Coast Starz in conjunction with Adrenaline. This process eventually progressed to the point where Utah kids were getting noticed and are now playing NCAA lacrosse. However, it always felt like a sprint to get there while we were missing a ‘prime’ in-state component- consistent and quality coaching. Utah Prime Lacrosse Club is finally bringing together the best coaches with a common philosophy so kids can actually develop their games instead of just showcasing their talents. If you want to make it to the next level, you have to learn how to play the game the right way, you need the connections afforded by those who know the coaches, and in Utah, the only way to do this comprehensibly is to play for Utah Prime.”
Utah Prime is set to host tryouts for the upcoming Fall/Winter season in mid-September. “I’m thrilled about the manner in which this came together and that this venture could be sparked by the chance to partner with a company like Adrenaline. Like every young player that will comprise Utah Prime rosters, I was a kid from a non-traditional hotbed ten years ago that benefitted from high-level instruction and the infrastructure that a young Adrenaline company provided the Southern California area. Along with thousands of young men and women across the Western United States, I wouldn’t have become the man I am today without Adrenaline and since I graduated college, I have felt an obligation to pay that same privilege forward to everyone I’ve coached.”
Adrenaline is extremely excited to partner with the Utah Prime and help its young players reach the top of their playing potential. The future is bright for lacrosse players in the beehive state and we look forward to seeing the Utah Prime continue to grow and succeed for years to come.
For more information on Utah Prime, visit UtahPrime.com.