City Lax: Coach Gregory Crichlow earns national recognition from Play City

In the May feature "Lax in the City," we detailed City Lax, Denver's only inner-city youth lacrosse program, which was turning heads nationwide. Now, the endeavor's picked up a new honor: Coach Gregory Crichlow was given as one of four 2010 "Coach of the Year" awards by Play City, a community sports organization founded by YouthNoise and Nike.

The prize, which comes with a trip to the Get Set America summit in Washington D.C., recognizes coaches who've become role models for their players and their community. Like many of the people involved with City Lax, Crichlow embodies those ideas, as evidenced by the description of him included with the award announcement:

Gregory Crichlow of Denver City Lax wins this award for the integrity he displays in his personal life and the lessons he teaches his girls Lacrosse team. He donates his time to help his athletes become the best that they can be in all aspects of their life. First at practice and last to leave, Crichlow is a leader to the girls he instructs. Crichlow's experience with Denver City Lax is a prime example of the kind of coach he is. The program helps to develop urban youth both as players and as educated, enriched members of the community. Gregory started out never having coached women's lacrosse; he didn't even know many of the rules attributed to the game. By the end of his second season his beginning lacrosse team had turned into division champs at a state tournament. For his efforts, we name Gregory Crichlow a winner.

While City Lax's 2011 season is still many months away, with honors like this, momentum is already building for the little lax program that could.

More from our Follow That Story archive: "Making City Lax, the award-winning film on Denver's unlikeliest lacrosse team."

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Joel Warner is a former staff writer for Westword and International Business Times. He's also written for WIRED, Men's Journal, Men's Health, Bloomberg Businessweek, Popular Science, Slate, Grantland and many other publications. He's co-author of the 2014 book The Humor Code: A Global Search for What Makes Things Funny, published by Simon & Schuster.
Contact: Joel Warner