When the Thompson brothers take the lacrosse field, you can always expect something special to happen.
“For me, it’s just been a childhood dream for us to come together and have that opportunity to just come out here on the floor and to be able to play the game that we all love,” Jeremy Thompson said.
He is the oldest of the four. Jeremy Thompson currently plays with the Georgia Swarm of the National Lacrosse League with younger brothers Miles and Lyle Thompson.
“It’s something special where we’re all fortunate to play professional lacrosse,” Lyle Thompson said.
On Saturday night, it was Lyle stealing the show by scoring the overtime game-winning goal over the Albany Firewolves, and the third oldest of the bunch, Hiana Thompson.
“When you’re playing against that guy, you always want to outplay them,” Hiana said.
The sibling rivalry and the bantering was just like when they were kids growing up on the Onondaga Reservation.
“It was something that we did together,” Jeremy Thompson said. “We did everything together. Whether it was the backyard playing whatever sport, or growing to the grocery store growing up.”
The Thompson brothers always pushing each other accelerated all of their games. Jeremy Thompson went on to play lacrosse at Syracuse, where he was a two-time All-American. In the 2011 NLL Draft, the Buffalo Bandits drafted Jeremy Thompson with the ninth pick, and then Hiana Thompson went 25th overall.
“The most we’ve had is three brothers on one team,” Hiana Thompson said. “So it’s been close, but we’ve all played in a game together, which is awesome.”
As the two older brothers got their professional careers going, Miles and Lyle Thompson were making history at UAlbany. The younger brothers set school and NCAA records on their way to Tewaaraton Trophies in 2014 and 2015.
“You know anytime we step on the floor together, whether it’s against each other or together, it’s a big moment for my family, my community, myself,” Lyle Thompson said.
Lyle Thompson was drafted by Georgia in 2015, one year after the Swarm selected Miles Thompson. Lyle has become one of the most accomplished players in the NLL: a 2016 All-Rookie team selection, 2017 NLL Championship MVP, and 2017 regular season MVP.
“All those memories in the backyard were something that was just a buildup,” Jeremy Thompson said. “You become conscious in a way with your experiences in life, and it’s really about kind of looking after one another.”
This season, Jeremy Thompson moved into third place all-time for NLL career face-off wins.
The Thompsons understand the impact they have on lacrosse, and always play at the highest level when they pick up the stick.
“We had a little group come over that we met in Texas, and they drove 12 hours just to watch because they knew we were playing,” Hiana Thompson said. “So it’s little things like that that [go] a long way.”
Using lacrosse as a way to share their story and culture with fans everywhere, the brothers are looking to continue inspiring future generations of lacrosse players.
“As long as I have a spot on a team and can contribute in the best way possible, and it’s a benefit for the team, then obviously, why not continue that on?” Jeremy Thompson said.
“That’s kind of what I’m here for. Obviously, I love this game. I always said I want to play as long as I can,” Hiana Thompson said. “But my son, my kids, my girls are the ones I’m playing this game for right now.”