Club lacrosse looks to seniors for leadership this season

By Adam Riglian

If a sports team wants to attract fans, then winning is the best way to do it. However, not much attention has been given to the club lacrosse team, who last year won the Pioneer Collegiate Lacrosse League and earned a trip to the national chamionship tournament, and look to improve this year.

The men’s lacrosse team opened its season Friday, Feb. 24 in St. Louis. They dropped the first game against No. 10 Lindenwood University in Missouri, 13-8, but came back on Saturday to beat No. 17 Oakland (Michigan) 15-10, and No. 18 Minnesota 14-6.

“It is a national league with 180 teams,” coach Tim Gray said. “We have to do a lot on our own financially, but do play big schools like Michigan and Florida State. Our conference [PCLL] is based on teams in New England like Boston University, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Boston College, ten teams in total in our division.”

Last year’s team received an automatic bid to the national tournament for winning its conference, but lost in the first round to a highly touted Michigan team. The team had success, but remained unhappy they could not advance further, vowing to be better prepared next year.

“We want to win our conference for sure, this year we have a lot of higher expectations. We should win a higher seed in the national tournament this year, which will make our time in the tourney a lot easier,” said junior attack captain Chris Cook, last year’s conference offensive player of the year and second team All-American.

The players who are expecting the most are the returning starters, who see promise in this season’s squad.

“We kept a solid core from last year, losing only a few kids,” co-captain junior attack John Maydick said. “I think we’re definitely better than last year, our midfield is stronger, and we have a lot more depth.”

The real strength of this team is its captains, Cook, Maydick, junior defender Joe Lang, and sophomore goalie Craig Sini.

“Cook and I were both captains for awhile, and we both took the program under our wings trying to make it better. Cook handles most of the offense, while Craig and I handle all the defense because our coach has a full-time job and cannot make all the practices,” Lang said.

All the captains try to instill a sense of family with the team, on and off the field.

“We try to stress that were not a team but more of a family, we try to get together as much as we can outside lacrosse,” Sini said.

This year the team hopes to garner a higher seed in the national tournament and win their conference again. One captain has his eyes set on a larger prize.

“We’d like to go all the way to the national championship this year and hope to finish top 5 in the country,” Maydick said.

As with any club team, there is always talk of moving to the varsity level.

“There are hopes that we could move to Division 1 after the new stadium is built, if they build one, but it’s all rumor mill right now,” Gray said.

The Huskies recently defeated neighboring Wentworth Insitute of Technology, a D-III varsity team, 7-2 in a scrimmage at Sweeney Field. The team plays again on March 25 when Rhode Island comes to Parsons Field at 1 p.m.

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