Parenting is hard work – especially when you have three little ones under the age of 5 running around. Zach Hockert and his wife Shanna added to their family of four in July 2018, but their family doesn’t end there. Zach is a varsity coach for the Black Hills Lacrosse Association, which extends their circle by 24 kids each season.
“Being able to mentor these kids is rewarding,” Zach said with smile as he talked about his team. “You get to teach them things that they can’t always learn from their parents, and how to be a team.”
Zach began playing lacrosse as a club sport in Minnesota when he went to college. Without knowing how to play, he easily learned the ropes and found a passion for lacrosse. Now, he has been coaching athletes in the Black Hills for the past five years.
Black Hills Lacrosse Association got its start in 2012, and Coach Hockert has already left his mark. Not only are his teams consistently among the top teams in the state, he has gained multiple of his players the accolades of making the All State team, as well as Mr. Lacrosse for the state of South Dakota two years in a row – something Zach considers one of his greatest achievements as coach thus far.
“Our program would not be where it is today without his leadership of our boys,” said Chad Vickers – a parent to two of Zach’s players. Along with teaching valuable athletic skills, Coach Hockert places an emphasis and teaching his boys more.
“Group activities are so important to a child’s development,” said Zach. “It shows that people rely on you and you rely on them. It’s a skill they will use their entire life, and it’s best to learn it early on.”
Although Coach Hockert is a busy guy, between juggling family and work (and tax season during game season!), Zach dedicates 100% of himself to his team and supporting his players – something he plans on doing for years to come.
words by Jenna Carda
photos by Jesse Brown Nelson
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