Frank Corto has been involved in lacrosse as a player and a coach for more than 40 years.
Starting this spring, he’ll take on a new challenge as the head boys’ lacrosse coach at York Suburban High School. As the head of Team Lacrosse of Central Pennsylvania, Corto said he’s coached more than three-quarters of the Trojans’ roster, including his son, Dominic.
“How excited am I? On a scale of one to 10, probably an 11,” Corto said. “… I’m thankful that the school and the administration could come to an agreement to get this moving in the right direction. I couldn’t be more excited to get started.”
Corto said he wanted the job because he believes he can help take Suburban to the next level, giving the players an opportunity to “do something great.”
“I’ve coached three-quarters of the team from when they were in first grade to when they were in eighth grade,” he said. “Any athlete who has ever played sports, it doesn’t matter if you played professionally or in college, we all remember our high school careers. … I want them to have great memories for the rest of their lives.”
Corto is taking over for Luke Beam, who resigned in January after leading the program for the last four seasons. Corto takes over a team that went 10-7 last season, finishing eighth in the 14-team York-Adams League and losing in the first round of the District 3 Class 2-A playoffs.
“Suburban has been one of those teams that has been middle of the road,” Corto said. “Suburban has always had talent.”
Familiar with the roster: Corto said the most difficult part of taking over in February is the other teams in the area are starting ahead of Suburban. Most programs have operated nonmandatory open gyms since October.
“The benefit is I know the kids. I’m not coming in green. I can hit the ground running,” he said. “We all know the expectations will be high. My dad taught me a long time ago that the will to prepare has to be greater than the will to win. They know the expectations at practice and in the classroom will be high.”
Aside from his son Dominic, a junior, Corto mentioned he’s close with most of the team, mentioning Justin Shocker, Evan and Nate LaCates, Mike Igo, Joe Shearer, Ryan Hopwood and Phinean Smith.
“I talk to all of them a lot,” Corto said. “One of the things I’ve taken pride in over the years in coaching is I build a relationship with every kid. I know what’s going on at school, at practice, at home and everything else.”
Father-son combination: With the excitement of coaching his son, Corto also realizes there are “trials and tribulations” that can follow.
“Traditionally, you expect more out of your son,” Corto said. “When you set that standard, though, the other players know the expectations are high. Fortunately, my son is a good enough player and mature enough to understand that.”
While Central York and York Catholic have been the top teams in the league recently, Corto is setting the team’s goals to make the district and state playoffs.
“I think York Suburban is very similar to every school in York County,” he said. “We have some really good players who will go on to play in college, and then we have kids who are just playing in high school. There is no program in York County that has 15 kids going to play (NCAA) Division I lacrosse like there are in Philadelphia and Baltimore. With the right mentality and work ethic, though, I think we can compete with anybody today.”
Reach Jacob Calvin Meyer at firstname.lastname@example.org.