CLEVELAND, Ohio – Cleveland State University volunteer assistant lacrosse coach Ted Bergman will be using his time off over the winter break a bit differently than many of his peers.
Bergman will head to Kenya at the invitation of the National Team head coach, continuing his efforts to spread the sport around the world.
Bergman helped coach the Ugandan national team at the 2018 World Championships where he met Kenya head coach Storm Trentham. The two share an interest in developing lacrosse in nontraditional locations. Bergman will assist with a Girls U-19 National Team camp and serve as a guest coach at a school in the capital city of Nairobi.
While this is the first time he is going to Africa, Kenya will be the fifth foreign country in which Bergman has played or coached lacrosse.
"Traveling and meeting people through lacrosse really puts everything into perspective for you," Berman said. "When I coached for Uganda, they're excited and freaking out because they got shoes for the World Championships and some of them never had shoes before. It makes you much more appreciative when you return home."
Bergman, who is in his first year on the staff at Cleveland State, has spent the past five summers in Israel where he helped develop and coach lacrosse at the grassroots level. He began as an intern with the Israel Lacrosse Association, but it didn't take long for him to expand his responsibilities, and his personal network of relationships with those involved in international lacrosse.
Bergman was soon overseeing the Israel Premier Lacrosse League, which featured players from seven different countries. Through his time in Israel, he met the head coach for Uganda and agreed to help coach the African squad. It was just one of many introductions that has continued to take Bergman around the globe.
"I love where the game of lacrosse has taken me around the world and excited to see what's still to come," Bergman said.
Bergman was a standout goaltender at Division III powerhouse Wesleyan University in his collegiate playing days. He was named National Goalie of the Year, earning the Ensign C. Markland Kelly, Jr. honor from the United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association. Bergman was the first Wesleyan player to be named a First Team All-American as a goalie, leading the Cardinals to their first NCAA Final Four appearance in a decade.