The Thompson Trio: College Lacrosse’s Family Treasure

Photo Credit: University of Albany Athletics
Photo Credit: University of Albany Athletics

In upstate New York at the University of Albany, drop the name Thompson and lacrosse and you probably get a knowing nod and a smile. The University at Albany men’s lacrosse team features brothers Miles and Lyle Thompson who, along with their cousin Ty Thompson, accounted for over half of the Great Danes lacrosse teams goals in 2013.

The Thompson brothers, who are from the Onondaga Nation near Syracuse in the Finger Lakes region of New York, grew up close to the sport of lacrosse. Along with Cousin Ty, who was raised in the Mohawk Nation, just a few hours away from Miles and Lyle, they have all had sticks in their hands since they were old enough to hold them. Miles and Lyle Thompson’s dad Jerome is a former indoor lacrosse player who helped coach all three Thompsons to success in both youth and high school. Miles and Lyle‘s older brother Jeremy also had a successful career with the Syracuse Orange before moving on to esteemed ranks of the National Lacrosse League and Major League Lacrosse. So you could definitely say that it runs in the family.

Ty and Miles arrived first at University at Albany in 2011 with Lyle arriving to the Great Danes squad the following season. This past year as a sophomore, Lyle Thompson racked up an impressive 113 points, to come in just below the NCAA record, and even missed a game that may have put him over the top. Altogether the Thompson trio scored 254 points for the UAlbany team in 2013.

The University at Albany’s Coach Scott Mar’s style has already been described as “run-and gun”, which more than fits the play of all three Thompsons. With 2013’s NCAA rule change to eliminate stalling in the game of men’s lacrosse, the all-Thompson offensive attack, which is characterized by their fast-playing style and familiar sense of knowing exactly where each other are at on the field, has proven wickedly effective. The Thompsons attribute much of their success to their mastery of the indoor game and the box lacrosse style, much to the delight of the Albany Great Dane fans.

In fact Lacrosse Magazine choose all three Thompsons as 2014 DI Preseason All-Americans for the 12th ranked UAlbany team. Lyle Thompson was also named as their 2014 Preseason Player of the Year, while the Rochester Rattlers as part of the 2014 Major League Lacrosse Entry Draft just recently picked up Miles and Ty Thompson.

This past May, Lyle Thompson was celebrated as a Tewaaraton Award finalist, and the first-ever Native American up for the converted award. The Tewaaraton Award recognizes college lacrosse’s best player and also symbolizes the Native American heritage of this ancient sport.

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