What They're Saying About John
"John is a throwback coach. He loves the game and is willing to play any team regardless of the size or strength of the opponent. His teams always play one of the toughest schedules around each spring. He is a big reason why lacrosse became part of our sports program at Lyme-Old Lyme High School."
Rob Roach, Old Lyme athletic director
What You Need To Know About John
John Flower, The Day's 2012 All-Area Boys' Lacrosse Coach of the Year, is one of the founding fathers of youth lacrosse in the Old Lyme area. He started the youth program in Old Lyme with his brother Jeff and Howard Fish. The trio coached their sons in the early days and gradually built a strong feeder program for not only Old Lyme but other schools in the lower Connecticut River Valley, including Old Saybrook, Valley Regional and Haddam-Killingworth. The Tics program continues to teach fundamentals to kids in the area. He also helped the Old Lyme High School program get off the ground in 2000 and took over as coach about seven years ago. He was a natural for the position, competing at Tabor Academy in Marion, Mass., and Hartwick College in Oneonta, N.Y.
Due to his tireless efforts and dedication, John has built a solid reputation for the Old Lyme program and is respected around the state by his fellow coaches, according to athletic director Rob Roach. "John believes in playing hard from the first whistle on and this attitude rubs off on his team," Roach said. "The true measure of a successful coach is the number of players that go on to play at the next level. John has inspired many of his players to do just that. Lyme-Old Lyme lacrosse is lucky to have John as the varsity coach."
The Wildcats had a successful season, posting a 14-4 overall record and qualifying for the Class S state tournament after sitting out postseason the previous year. They beat Bacon Academy 11-8 before losing to eventual state runner-up Somers (14-13 OT) in the quarterfinals. "I had a good feeling about this team," Flower said. "One thing I can say, they were a team and they were a good bunch of guys."
Flower also scored another important victory, building enough depth in the high school program to play a junior varsity season for the first time. It was an impressive accomplishment for a Class S school. "It was huge that we had a junior varsity program," Flower said. "It is a lot of work but I had a lot of support from the high school and my athletic director." He's unsure how long he'll stay in coaching, but don't bet against him sticking around for awhile. "We had such a good year, so I'll stick it out," Flower said. "It doesn't matter about the record. It's whether the kids respond or not." When he's not coaching lacrosse, he works for the Town of Old Lyme. He also lives in Old Lyme.
— Gavin Keefe