SWAMPSCOTT — The search for a new varsity boys lacrosse coach at Swampscott High has concluded. Geoff Beckett, a Swampscott High alum, has been appointed the new coach of the Big Blue. An official announcement on Beckett’s appointment was made this past weekend.
“I’m definitely excited,” Beckett, a math teacher at Swampscott High, said. “I’ve been teaching here at Swampscott High School for 10 years. I’ve coached football here. It’s important to me. I went to high school here at Swampscott High.”
Beckett has no shortage of lacrosse coaching experience. He has coached at Pentucket High, Hamilton-Wenham, North Andover and at the collegiate level at Division II Merrimack College. Most recently, Beckett served as the head coach of the boys lacrosse team at Triton High for two seasons. He was named Cape Ann League Coach of the Year in 2017.
“I definitely like to play fast,” Beckett, who played college lacrosse at UMass Dartmouth as a defenseman, said. “I’m not a big fan of 6-on-6 offense or 6-on-6 defense. I like to get guys up and down the field. I like to push for a quick goal. Even when it’s 6-on-6, the more opportunities we get the better chances we’ll get. I like to keep the ball moving.”
Beckett replaces former Big Blue coach Todd Pierce, who spent five seasons directing the team. Under Pierce’s direction, Swampscott won three Northeastern Conference South crowns and made four state tournament appearances. Pierce finished with 51 wins during his five seasons.
This past spring, however, was more of a rebuilding year at Swampscott. Injuries and inexperience took their tolls on the Big Blue and team finished at 4-14. The positive moving forward, however, is a handful of underclassmen players received plenty of valuable playing experience at the varsity level.
Getting Swampscott back to the state tournament is one of Beckett’s goals.
“I coached against them (this past season) when I was at Triton and they beat us by two goals,” Beckett said. “We’ll see what we can improve on. Making the state tournament will be our first goal, definitely.
“I’ve always been Big Blue at heart,” Beckett said. “I’m excited to keep that growing. It’s always been a program that’s on the cusp of being strong. I’d like to bring Swampscott to that next level with going deep in the state tournament and being a tough team to beat on (opponents’) schedules.”
Beckett will also aim to build a strong junior varsity program at Swampscott to increase participation in the program. Numbers have been a struggle at Swampscott in recent years.
“I know they’ve got a good group of talent,” Beckett said. “They have a good goalie, good defense, good middies, good attackers. The struggle is with numbers. That’s my first step, start with the middle school and get those numbers back up. I think it’ll be a talented group.”
In addition to coaching lacrosse, Beckett has also spent the past 10 seasons as an assistant football coach for Robert Serino at Swampscott. Beckett has coached defensive linemen but will coach offensive linemen this upcoming season.
The Big Blue opened tryouts this past weekend and Beckett said the team has looked solid thus far.
“We have a lot of guys coming back from last year,” Beckett said. “We have a new quarterback (Graham Inzana) but he was really successful at the junior varsity level. We have a lot of returning linemen and a good group of sophomores and juniors. It’s a great group. I think we’ll have a lot of success but you never really know until that first game.”