FLG Coaches Feature: Beth Vogelsang

Beth Vogelsang is FLG’s newest coach for the class of 2026 girl’s team. By day, Vogelsang works as a physical education teacher in the Huntington school district. But she doubles as the Huntington Blue Devils Girls Varsity Head Coach. In college, Vogelsang played midfield for the Cortland Women’s Lacrosse Team. She now brings her playing experience and coaching skills to FLG. The former Red Dragon is looking forward to her first year coaching with FLG and working with a younger class of players that will grow the next generation of the game.

Q: What does your lacrosse background look like? How long have you been involved in the sport?

A: I started playing lacrosse during the Spring of 2005 in my eighth grade season, which is pretty late compared to many. The culture in the town was still growing and the coaches were looking for athletes. I immediately joined and haven’t looked back since. Then, I joined Express travel teams as a rising sophomore. I made the varsity team as a sophomore and was captain during 12th grade.

When l went through the recruiting process and I knew I wanted to do physical education so that’s what led me to SUNY Cortland. I was a part of the SUNY Cortland team in 2010 and always stayed connected managing the team as well as joining the club team throughout my years there. Additionally, I took a lacrosse coaching course with Kathy Taylor for credits towards my physical education degree. 

Furthermore, one of the most pivotal moments I had with coaching was when I had the opportunity to be the assistant varsity coach during my student teaching at Lafayette High school in Syracuse, NY.  This really sparked my interest in coaching and especially at the higher level. I loved the atmosphere, the intensity, and the “family” feel of the program. Those girls were so motivated and I loved that mentality.

Right out of college I’ve coached for many travel programs, done clinics and camps, supervised a travel team at Syracuse lax camp, have attended three lacrosse coach’s conventions, been the JV coach for Kings Park and Whitman, and finally made my way from assistant coach for a few years to head coach here at Huntington. I’m definitely still learning and evolving every year and that’s part of the excitement and process. 

Q: During your time at Cortland, what was the most valuable lesson you learned about the sport of lacrosse?

A: Whatever you do, do it with 100% intensity and heart. Whether it be lacrosse related intensity in shuttle lines, drills, running, lifting, nutrition to the “small tasks” like cleaning up the equipment, cheering for your teammates, and being a good person off the field, I have learned that all the elements work together as one. Give it your all in every aspect of the game, learn from your mistakes, and never have regrets. 

Q: What inspired you to begin coaching and stay a part of the lacrosse community? You also have coached other sports, what about coaching lacrosse makes it special or different for you?

A: Coming from a big family, my parents have always instilled in me the value of athletics, nutrition, and exercise. My mom is a former athlete herself and my dad was a runner. Ever since I can remember my dad would always say “give it full blast” and this has always stayed in my heart.

I’m the third of four children, and my older brother being the eldest with a four year age gap never took it easy on me playing any sport. I remember him being the quarterback at a high school level and me in elementary school having a pass with him. My arms would bruise while he would throw the football as hard as possible. I always loved the challenge even if it was tough. Also, my very first soccer coach gave me the nickname “nails” because I was tougher than nails. These early memories contributed to who I am today. 

In my life I’ve played basketball, soccer, volleyball, lacrosse, cross country, and track. I’ve coached middle school soccer, JV volleyball, lacrosse at all levels, and cross country. From my upbringing and the many opportunities I had with sports as well as with my background in physical education, this has shaped me into the person I am today. It has inspired me to want to give back to the community and children within it the same opportunities. Lacrosse is closest to my heart because I am a part of the growing sport and the high energy of it.  It’s constantly evolving and I love that about it! It really shows young girls/athletes to dream big. 

Q: You had a unique second season as the Blue Devil’s head coach, what have you learned from this unprecedentedly short season? What do you look forward to most about this upcoming season?

A: My first year as head coach was in 2019, and we finished one game shy of the playoffs.  It was definitely rough on the whole team, however, we came back last season with a vengeance. The girl’s were getting together during the off-season and there was a huge spark of excitement before tryouts. Many players committed to play at elite college programs and many in our community had waited for this group of seniors. 

I was devastated when the spring season was taken away from us. I felt horrible for the players that would never be able to play their last high school season of lacrosse. But, I understand it was necessary for their safety. I learned to cherish every moment and don’t take anything for granted because you never know what can be taken from you. As cliche as it may sound, it’s the truth! This season, I can’t wait to get back on the field and have a restart year. Consistently, talking to my players, we are all on the same page. We can’t wait to put our heart and love for the game into every aspect of lacrosse. I reiterate to my players about living in the moment and enjoying what they have in front of them. 

Q: How does coaching the varsity level girls differ from coaching the 2026 team with FLG?

A: I always make sure that when we are playing we are playing with full hearts and intensity even if it’s “just a practice,” no matter what level I’m coaching at. Playing with the game set mentality is beneficial all around as well as putting a stress on fundamentals daily.  The learning curve for middle school girls is a little different than varsity. By midway through our season things should be running like a “well oiled machine” on the high school field. We tweak things along the way and the older girls really help one another. Communication is key and our field is “loud.” 

I find that middle school girls are just learning their voices and many aspects of the game are still coming together. Physically they are growing and mentally they are trying to find their confidence. The 2026 team has a bright future ahead of them and I can’t wait for things to all come together. 

Q: What unique perspective or experience do you bring to your players while coaching? And what is the most important thing you try to teach your players?

A: My students and players always say, “Coach V is extremely passionate. She’s definitely strict but very nice at the same time.” It took me a few years to figure out my coaching style but now I understand exactly who I am. I hold high expectations in every piece of the game on or off the field. But at the same time, my team knows they have a mentor they can trust and come to. I value the individual relationships as well as the team culture.

High school is a tough age to balance everything. I love teaching life lessons to my girls on a regular basis. And I love watching them grow in every aspect of life and I really try to help them see that!  I am a “tough love” kind of coach. Now the girls know when to “put their work hats on.” At the end of their high school experience, players understand lacrosse is more than just lacrosse. 

 

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