MaLaxOC.com is pleased to introduce Sage Hill Head Coach and soon to be new dad, Chris Disimile. Read on to learn about his rather impressive lacrosse genealogy, his journey from lacrosse hot bed Long Island to the OC, and his near brush with Hollywood greatness (apparently a recurring theme with our local lax coaches).
Q. Did you play lacrosse as a kid? Where?
A. Yes. On Long Island. Played for the Sachem Athletic Club for Dennis Wandle and then at Sachem High School before they split it into two schools. Then, I played for Mike Waldvogel at Yale from 1989 to 1993. I was lucky enough to go to the tournament twice in college and it was really nice to see the Yale team do so well this year under Andy Shay.
Q. Do you like to give inspirational speeches to your players before the game?
A. You’ll have to ask them! I’m better at halftime speeches than pre-game speeches and our first half performance unfortunately seems to reflect that.
Q. Who are your assistant coaches?
A. Mark Morgan (from Maryland) and Bennett Dear (from Brown)
Q. What style of play do you like to use?
A. Whatever wins games! My coach in college was pretty defensive-minded (former World Team player and coach Mike Waldvogel) so even though I was an offensive player, I tend to be pretty conservative. The size of Sage Hill suits this style I think.
Q. What is your favorite movie?
A. The Godfather I and II
Q. Denver or Duke?
A. Denver now that I’m a West Coaster! They’re so much fun to watch. My dad was an All-American midfielder in college and a graduate of Levittown Division Avenue High School, as was Waldvogel and Bill Tierney. So, I root for Tierney. I also think it’s great for lacrosse to have a really competitive team from the West. I have to give some of that credit to another former coach of mine at Yale, Jaime Munro, for really putting the Denver program on the map.
Q. Do you have any children that play lacrosse?
A. Not yet! My wife Marisa and I are expecting our first child in December.
Q. Would you say you are quiet on the sidelines or do you “use your voice”?
A. I’m kind of a maniac at times. My high school coaches (Rick Mercurio and Tony Petillo) were very emotional and I’m the same way. I’m more similar to them than Waldvogel, who was always very even keeled and cerebral. I’m working on toning it down but I’ve been unsuccessful thus far.
Q. What is one thing about you that most people do not know?
A. I worked on Wall Street for a long time but now I’m grateful to be teaching History and Financial Literacy at Sage Hill. Great school. Great community . . . I wrote a REALLY bad screenplay once.
Q. If you had one game to play over from this past year which game would it be?
A. Corona Del Mar. I’d play them every week if I could. You need to play better programs to improve.
Q. When you were a kid, did you sit in the back of the classroom or in the front?
A. Front. I was kind of a nerd.
Q. A penguin walks through that door right now wearing a sombrero. What does he say and why is he here?
A. Duuuuuuude. I’m thirsty. I heard you guys needed a goalie?
Q. What song best described your team this past year?
A. “Crossroads” by Cream. You’ll have to ask my players for a more modern choice. Our program really turned the corner this year. This was the first year that we joined a league and at one point we were undefeated in league play about halfway through the season. We’re a small school but we’ll continue to be more competitive in Orange County in the coming years. Our kids love the game and they’re getting better every day. I love coaching. I love the immediate positive feedback you get from it. I love the rewards you get from teaching the game to young men and seeing the improvement over the course of a season.
Q. Will Southern California lacrosse overtake East Coast lacrosse in quality of play some day?
A. Absolutely. When USC adds a men’s Division I program . . . that will be the real tipping point. Football should be taken out of the Title IX equation and lacrosse will fill the void.