Ian Mills, an assistant at Palos Verdes and director of the South Bay Lacrosse Club, has been named head coach at Notre Dame High School, which is adding a lacrosse program this spring.
Mills was named U.S. Lacrosse Assistant Coach of the Year in 2014 for his role in the Sea Kings’ U.S. Lacrosse Southern Section North championship, the first of two in a row. Now he will begin the building process at Notre Dame, which plans to compete at the junior varsity level this year and expand to add a varsity team in 2017.
“I’m honored to be joining the Notre Dame High School family,” Mills said via email. “Notre Dame has a tremendous academic and athletic reputation. It’s an exciting time for Los Angeles lacrosse!”
Mills played at Towson University and on the LXM Pro Tour. He directs the SBLC, a club for youth through middle school players, and the Los Angeles Youth Lacrosse League, which lists the Factory, El Segundo, Santa Monica Dragons, Santa Monica Vikings, Leverage, Culver City and West LA clubs as participants.
At Notre Dame, he will be starting from scratch at the high school level.
“In starting a new program, it’s important to set appropriate expectations and goals for the players,” Mills said. “Initially, we are going to take it one practice at a time to allow our team the opportunity to build a solid fundamental foundation. As a staff, its our job to create a well-structured and competitive environment that will help with this growth.”
Mills also said Rob Zoppo will be joining the Knights’ coaching staff. Also a former Towson midfielder and program manager at the SBLC, Zoppo was co-captain of the 2012 gold-medal winning Team USA U-19 squad. He comes to Notre Dame after spending the last two seasons coaching nationally ranked Calvert Hall College High School (Baltimore, Md).