Mike Acee was the right coach at the right time for my son, Luke.
We were not a “lacrosse family.” But when son Luke was drawn to the sport “late” in his youth (12), we studied up, asked a lot of questions back East, and liked the answers we got about Mike from his Long Island roots, Long Island being a lax hotbed.
Mike welcomed Luke to his lacrosse family from the get go. With his affable nature yet high standards, he gained Luke’s trust quickly. From there all good things showed up in my son: A solid work ethic, a devotion, and a passion to achieve at a high level. The experience would go on to inform his approach to all athletics, friend selection, academics and beyond.
Mike covers it all: old school reps combined with new techniques that made each player responsible for his own success, and by extension, the team’s success. Mike seems to pull from all the playbooks, switching out as necessary. I saw it kept the team on its toes, and anyone wanting to learn the “why” behind his directives was patiently and enthusiastically debriefed.
Mike’s 212 culture is the stuff of a Hollywood movie: A brotherhood that pushed them forward to tourneys throughout the West. When 212 would walk onto a field (Sandstorm in Palm Springs comes to mind), it was like a movie voiceover saying, “The Competition Has Arrived.”
Mike can create that, drawing that delicate balance of “I’m your coach. I am not your friend. Even though I like you guys a hell of a lot.”
It’s not easy to walk that line, but Acee does it, with his team and with the parents sitting in those folding chairs.
Mike is always willing to discuss a play, a position, a decision. He could bring it down to how my kid fit into those decisions, but was still always willing to hear me out.
Turns out… (hate to say it), Mike was always right. If being right means that my kid is now a strong, confident, coachable college-lacrosse bound young man, who just happens to be happiest when he is on the lax turf.
Mom of Luke