The Bucs will field a hard-working squad this spring, hanging their helmets on imposing, physical defense and the leadership of 13 seniors under first-year head coach Kyle Hitsman.
The Lakers are charging full steam ahead with massive expectations, as they field what head coach Doug Sharp calls the “most talented and experienced team in our program’s history.”
Check out what to expect from local boys lacrosse as their season kicks off this week.
Last year: 7-6
Key returners: Kyle Bush, Carter Prieditis, Adam Maguire, Alec Law, Mex Sepeshy, Trevor Holleman, Kyle Eveland, Alex Plouff, Jack Miller
Notable newcomers: Dominic Jerosvek, Ryan Francis, Ryan Tongue
Strengths: Work ethic
First-year head coach Kyle Hitsman: “Our team motto this season is 'hard work beats talent.' I like this quote for many reasons, including the mentality that it instills into our program. Not only does this quote reflect what I preach on the field during practice and games, but it also encourages a lifestyle that I hope these men will carry with them as they pursue their future outside of high school. I want them to recognize that their goal can be reached and possibly exceeded if the effort and determination are there.
“As a team, I think our greatest area of strength is our work ethic. I couldn’t be more pleased with the effort and positivity that has been presented thus far this season. Having to adjust to a completely new coaching staff can be challenging for a program and we, the coaches, are extremely excited about what this year will bring.
“The varsity team this year consists of 13 seniors, nine juniors and two freshmen. Returning as attackmen are Kyle Bush and Carter Prieditis, both from the starting lineup last season. They will both add veteran leadership and experience to the lineup.
“At midfield, Adam Maguire, Alec Law and Max Sepeshy are returning and exhibit great ball movement, stick handling ability and knowledge of the game.
“In addition, defensively, we have seniors Trevor Holleman, Kyle Eveland, Alex Plouff and Jack Miller returning to the team. Their physical size and strength will create beneficial mismatches with our opponents.
“Developmentally, I look forward to building and growing the unity and trust of this team. With strong skill sets, it will be crucial for us to continue to work to trust the program, each other and our process. At this point, the team is showing great effort in doing so, and I know we can get there.
“My greatest hope is that we can send these seniors off with a winning season and a positive experience. We will go into every game with the intent to win and we will continue to work to go as far as we can in the tournament.”
Last year: 10-7, regional finalist
Key returners: Dominik Molotky, Colby Brown, Sean Carrns, Noah Verlinde
Notable newcomers: Danton Molotky, Gavin Cunningham
Head coach Doug Sharp: “This is our most talented and experienced team we have fielded in our program’s history. We have lofty goals this season, with aspirations of winning the conference and making a deep run in the state tournament.
“We return 15 players from last year’s team. Noah Verlinde will lead the defense in his fourth year as a starter as a three-time All-State and All-Conference honoree before continuing his career at Marquette University next year. Sean Carrns returns to lead the midfield as a three-year starter and will continue to play at Davenport next year. Dominik Molotky and Colby Brown both return at attack as 2018 All-Conference and All-State honorable mention players. Molotky will play Division III at Ithaca.
“We have two exciting newcomers in freshman Danton Molotky, who will fill in at attack and midfield, and a new goalie, sophomore Gavin Cunningham.
“We have several years of varsity experience at every position. With a very talented team, we will need to continue to develop as a team and play every game as a team and not a group of talented individuals.”