Editor’s Note: Sweet Laxer recently spoke with Derek from Glory Hound Lacrosse about what they have to offer the lax world. It turns out they offer quite a lot! Looking for a unique gift for your favorite laxer? Or a memorable way to honor an important player or coach on your team? Well, look no further. It’s a modern take on lacrosse trophies and gifts! And as a special offer, Free shipping on any order placed by April 1st at GloryHoundLax.com! Any team order or individual, balls or shafts. Just mention LAS when ordering and select “local delivery” for shipping.
What is the story behind Glory Hound Lacrosse? How did you guys get started?
Glory Hound was established to provide lacrosse players, coaches and supporters with awards and gifts specific to the sport. As a parent of a couple players, as well as a coach, I was disappointed with the cookie-cutter trophies that ended up in a box somewhere and set out to develop products that were tied uniquely to the sport, rather than a variation on another sport’s trophy, and provide something players would display proudly.
Tell us about the man behind the company!
I’m a Syracuse native, where we learned to play in elementary school. When my sons started playing here in Austin, as part of some young programs, I became a coach to help develop the youth level teams.
In 2009, my job went overseas like so many others. In looking around at where I’d like to apply my skills, I committed myself to helping small business owners, including lacrosse brands, as a marketing consultant and coach, and got more involved with the sport locally, spreading my titles to referee and business owner.
What inspired you to create these specific products?
My father-in-law, a gifted woodworker, and made me shaft out of mesquite, which is a beautifully grained wood. Too brittle to play with, but as a coaching stick it was gorgeous and attracted many comments. During a sideline conversation, a couple dads asked if I could make more and we discussed the possibilities of engraving them for display.
As a result, I designed a display-only shaft featuring a scooped out area on the face, maximizing the engraving area and making it readable when hung on the wall. The patent is actually due to be published this month. We added hanging brackets shortly after, made of the same select cherry we use for the shafts. It’s a classic wood that just gets more beautiful with age.
Teams, players and parents loved the product and asked if we could find a solution for lower priced participation gifts and fundraising. We did some tests with the balls and they became an instant hit.
Your products are perfect gifts for special occasions. What are the most popular occasions they are used for?
Both the balls and shafts have been popular for end of season awards and senior gifts. However, we also produce many for holiday gifts and off-season tournaments as gifts, trophies or souvenirs.
We’ve worked with teams all over the country and events including the Patriot Cup, the Warrior 40 and Dick’s Tournament of Champions. We also use the business to support local players, sponsoring the Top Dog conditioning and skills camp, and contribute to regional and national efforts to support our military (Wounded warrior Project) and underserved areas (Bridge Lacrosse).
What is the funniest/craziest thing a customer has had you engrave on one of your products?
Our engraved messages have been surprisingly tame. We’re working on some balls now whose art is based on a player’s tattoo. We received photos of the tattoo – thankfully it was on the calf. We have an outstanding artist who captured it perfectly.
Working with shafts and balls as products, though, is a minefield of sophomoric humor. We had a large order for blue balls last year that still makes the production guys laugh and I stopped labeling our shipments after the post office looked suspiciously at my box marked “yellow tiger balls.”
For team orders order, contact Glory Hound Lacrosse at [email protected]. For more information on custom enraved balls and solid cherry shafts, visit www.gloryhoundlax.com. And remember, Free shipping on any order placed by April 1 at GloryHoundLax.com! Any team order or individual, balls or shafts. Just mention LAS when ordering and select “local delivery” for shipping.