Rachel Levy, Staff Writer
Shenandoah Men’s Lacrosse got to start their season a day early due to bad weather conditions, but they could have used the extra day of practice – they lost 11-10 against USA South opponent, Ferrum College.
The men have been working hard since the second week back at school. After “Snowmageddon 2016,” they came together with the women’s team to shovel out twenty yards of the field, a day later than their anticipated start date.
Even though they didn’t show it in their first game, they have a stronger team this year, with higher hopes for this season than previous seasons. They’ve added a strong freshmen class of fourteen, with talent, and they are expected to be able to pull out a few wins in and out of conference play. Junior Captain Tilghman Sanders believes that the large freshmen class will have a huge impact on the team. Another Junior Captain, Ben Judy agrees,saying that the new freshmen, “give us the depth we need at each position.” Having more players in each position allows the team to play and compete at practice – a perk which the captains believe is making the team better.
The men hope to be a break out this season in the Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC), which is one of the toughest men’s lacrosse conferences in the division. Sanders hopes to be a top six team (though they were picked as tied for ninth in a preseason poll) to get into playoffs and, “turn heads around in the ODAC.” Judy agrees that their goal is to make it to playoffs, and believes this is the year the team can do that. If they accomplish this, it will be the first time making an ODAC playoff appearance since joining the ODAC in the 2013 season.
The men have a tough season ahead of them with six more competitive out-of-conference games and nine conference games, with two of the conference games being against top-twenty teams. Though they lost their opener Judy believes, “it’ll only make the team stronger,” by showing them what they need to improve on to beat other teams.
The men aren’t going to let this loss define their season. They are a hardworking group that all have the same goal and are pushing to break into playoffs this year. They’ll be back at it Saturday at home against Wesley, hoping to prove that they are a new and improved team than last year.