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Morrisville State coaches take expertise to Scotland, represent team USA in global arena

MORRISVILLE, NY—Morrisville State men’s lacrosse is making its mark in the global arena.

Head coach Jason Longo and assistant coach Tim Barth took their expertise to Scotland this summer to lead an American team in an international sports tournament. Three Morrisville State lacrosse players also represented the USA in lacrosse competition during the 10-day visit to Scotland which was arranged through USA Athletes International (USAAI).

The non-profit organization gives amateur athletes and coaches the opportunity to participate in international sporting events throughout the world.
For Cazenovia native Longo, now of Morrisville, and Barth, of Cazenovia, the trip to Scotland was a chance to experience a new culture and to coach the sport they love.

Their elite USAAI team included student-athletes from Morrisville State, Springfield College, Wentworth Institute of Technology, Western Connecticut State University, Nichols College, Plymouth State and Mount Union College. The team faced off against four others, defeating Team Edinburgh, Team Glasgow, Team Aberdeen and Scotland’s International Team.

MSC students CJ Underwood, a computer systems technology student from Cincinnatus; John Sherlock, a business administration bachelor degree student from Tully; and Scott Augustine, a liberal arts & sciences—math & science student from Saranac Lake, competed for the USA team.

Coach Longo attributes the team’s success to talented players who bonded quickly despite having no time to practice prior to their first game.

Transitioning in another country was seamless for the coaching pair. With lacrosse rules universal around the world, their only challenge was coordinating a team whose members had never played together.

Longo is no stranger to packing up his stick and heading overseas to coach international competition. Last year he accepted an invitation to coach down under, leading a USAAI men’s lacrosse team to victory in Australia.

While it was Barth’s first time coaching on the international stage, it wasn’t his first taste of global competition. He represented Morrisville on the USAAI team that won the London Tournament Championship Title in 2008.

Regardless of wins on the field, the main draw of the trip was the experience. “I am thankful for this amazing opportunity,” Barth said.

“It’s been an honor to work as a coach with USAAI, representing the college and the USA,” Longo said. “It was the experience of a lifetime.”

The trip also included sightseeing in Edinburgh, the country’s capital, and tours of Stirling Castle, The National Wallace Monument, Scone Palace, and the City of St. Andrews.

“We went to coach what we love—lacrosse and we came home with so much more—new friends from around the world, witnessed various forms of coaching, and experienced a different culture,” Longo said.

“Every experience you grasp helps you grow as a coach in some way,” Barth said.

The duo has done just that in the nearly two years they have shared the field as coaches of the MSC men’s lacrosse team, leading the team to the North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) championship finals last year.

Longo, two-time NEAC Coach of the Year, has guided the Morrisville Mustangs to three straight North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) regular season titles.

A 2008 graduate of Morrisville State College, Barth competed for the Mustangs for two seasons in the midfield, captaining the team as a sophomore, while earning State University of New York Athletic Conference (SUNYAC) Commissioner’s List and All-Academic Team accolades in each season for excellence in academics.

USAAI currently represents athletes in 15 sports that travel around the world to more than 25 countries. The men’s lacrosse team travels to Netherlands, Scotland, Slovenia, Germany, Czech Republic, Austria and Australia.

Morrisville State sets the world in motion for students. Curricula are enriched with applied learning and pave the way for opportunity at both the Morrisville and Norwich campuses. An action-oriented, interactive learning lab, the college is a national leader in technology. Lauded for its exemplary, innovative and effective community service programs, the college was named to the 2012 President’s Higher Community Education Service Honor Roll. The college was recognized, by U.S. News and World Report, in its top tier Best Regional Colleges list and ranked second among regional colleges nationwide for outperforming its anticipated graduation rate. Visit www.morrisville.edu to experience, Morrisville in motion.