Former Gilman standout is the head coach of Redwood High School (CA)

by Nelson Coffin

While the Baltimore Command boys team had no luck beating CONNY in either pool play or a playoff game at the Under Armour All-America Lacrosse Weekend, a Baltimore native had much better luck against the team from Connecticut and northern suburbs of New York City.

West coach Blake Atkins, who was a starting midfielder on Gilman’s 1998 A Conference championship squad, guided his team to an improbable 7-6 overtime triumph on Sunday after rallying from a 4-1 deficit to claim the Command title.

Atkins, the head coach at Redwood High School (CA), moved to California after playing lacrosse at Swarthmore College.

He said that his West team was very athletic, but wondered how well they would mesh as a team.

Atkins discovered that his team had plenty of grit and resolve, enough to finish off CONNY with a textbook fast break by rising sophomore attackman Tynan Walsh (La Jolla High, CA) in OT.

“We have stud athletes,” Atkins said. “And our guys really came together today. But we had to do a lot of deck shuffling. It was our third game of the day, and we were getting pretty tired.”

Pictured above: West Command coach and Baltimore native Blake Atkins (center) with his mom, Peggy, and dad, Rich, at Towson University on Sunday.