The 2013 season is here and we wanted to work closely with college programs to bring a part of the excitement to you. Throughout the 2013 season we will highlight lacrosse programs on our space for all of our readers to follow. Player blogs serve as a unique outlet for programs to showcase their season as it develops, plus highlight everything they have to offer a student-athlete. In contrast, families and fans get a glimpse into the program’s athletic and academic regimen.
Senior – #13 – Attacker
Week 6: Planes, Jeans, and Time Zones
Hey there! We’re on the plane ride home from Denver and after a week-long spring break we certainly have a lot to catch up on. To say this trip has been an emotional rollercoaster is putting it mildly, between two tough games, amazing team bonding, and some crazy adventures we’ve experienced the highs and lows of collegiate athletics all jammed into one week.
As is the case with any lacrosse season, the turnaround time in between games is fast, like Cheetah-speed fast. The day after playing Dartmouth we left for South Bend, Indiana. For all you sports fans, you know that South Bend is the small town home to University of Notre Dame. When I say small town, I mean think about every country song describing “wide open spaces” and “little one store towns” and you have South Bend. We flew into Chicago and trekked two hours to Notre Dame. Somewhere between the flying and driving we switched time zones twice; when you land in Chicago, it is CNT time, and then when we drove to South Bend we were back to EST time. There was a good deal of confusion trying to figure out what time it actually was, and more importantly what time to set alarms for the next morning. By some stroke of God everyone woke up on time for breakfast the next morning. This wouldn’t be the last time Father Time tripped up our team on our trip (try saying that six times fast).
Now, you’ve read all about the weather we’ve been experiencing in Boston for games and preseason, so the next morning when we heard it was “cold,” we decided to use Notre Dame’s indoor field. Apparently the Fighting Irish haven’t been pelted by hail mid-game, so “cold” to them was a balmy 40°. We spent about half an hour inside stretching and doing stickwork just incase on gameday we had to play in the Carrier Dome. Needless to say our team, decided to forgo indoor practice relatively early and took the field, pumped to be in shorts and t-shirts. Some of my more stubborn teammates insisted that it was in fact “cold” and kept their under armour on. That lasted about 10 minutes into full field transition work and all of a sudden each of them began clawing at their necks in a desperate attempt to get some of that “cold” air in to lower their body temperature. I don’t think I’ve ever taken the chance to fully appreciate being able to pass and catch while being able to feel all five fingers but after our past two games let me tell you, it really does make all the difference.
After practice we grabbed lunch and went back to the hotel for some film and scouting. The real highlight of the night was team dinner. Recently, we’ve started a new tradition of themed pre-game dinners. The themes have been as subtle as “lipstick” and as exotic as that night’s theme of “safari chic.” We all paraded into dinner wearing cheetah print scarves, zebra striped shirts, leopard flats, and various khaki articles of clothing. The restaurant must have thought the Bronx Zoo was invading because they stuck us in a back room with doors that shut. Rawr. There would be another themed dinner to come but first, the game.
The first half against Notre Dame was awesome. Definitely the best lacrosse we’ve played thus far. Everyone had each other’s back, the communication was on point, people were taking risks, going hard after the ball, and it was great to see. That’s not to say these things were completely absent in the second half but they were more inconsistent. Unfortunately, Notre Dame capitalized on this opportunity and we left with a loss. It’s never fun to lose but to lose on spring break really puts a damper on things. I know our version of spring break is far from the beaches of Cancun, but it’s supposed to be fun, and losing isn’t fun so you do the math. We got back to the hotel and got smacked by another time-warp, it was daylight savings, so once again we found ourselves setting multiple alarms on phones that still hadn’t recovered from the double time-zone switch to make our flight the next morning to Denver.
We got to Denver on Sunday and our game wasn’t until Wednesday, which left us a lot of time to explore Colorado. It should also be noted that we went through our fourth time change in five days, at this point I completely gave up trying to adjust my watch and just hoped Apple came through and my iPhone would figure it out. Colorado is easily one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever been. The backdrop of the Rockies looks like it belongs as someone’s screen saver, not a real-life view. Although spring break generally follows the “eat, sleep, lax” schedule on repeat, our coaches were great about taking us to Boulder and around Denver so we could really see the mile high city. Holy hippies. I thought Vermont was bad but they’ve got nothing on the Coloradoans; dread locks and hemp-products galore, but to their credit, everyone was super nice and genuinely happy. I know you’ve been anxiously awaiting the second dinner theme so here it is: downright denim! That’s right, all 25 of us went to Bull & Bush’s Pub sporting our best denim; shirts, pants, vests, jackets, we were decked out in denim and looking like we stepped out of the early 90s. Unfortunately, assistant coach Kim Hillier and I were plagued with a 24-hour virus that prevented us from buttoning down our denim attire that evening, and kept us quarantined in our hotel rooms for the reminder of the night. Not what you want on Spring Break. Practice the next day was *air quotes* chilly, but it’s all-relative after surviving the UMass hypothermia. After spending he better part of my evening praying to the porcelain Gods, I was unable to participate in practice. Our coaches had a quick and efficient practice plan, and both attackers and defenders really battled it out and finished with, what I considered, a very productive day. Even though I was dying to get in there and play, I thought the attack did an awesome job of pushing it to goal and backing each other up.
The next day was gameday, and to everyone’s surprise it was sunny and 60°! In the morning, at our walk-though/shoot around, we all got to GTL minus the G and soak up some sun while we shot around in our pinnies. Sun’s out, guns out right? Game time was set for 7pm and even though we lost the sun by then, it was the first game more than half the team wasn’t clad in their full spandex suits. After a full day of waiting around for the game to start, it all came and went too fast. Denver took an early lead and I am sad to report it was one we never came back from. The Pioneers ended up winning the game 13-10. As tough as it is to look back on such a loss, there are a lot of good learning points and things to take away. Better to identify these things now, early, than look back and say we wish we could have changed things. I do want to give a couple shoutouts: freshmen Ally Adams and Jill Horka both notched 2 goals and sophomore Linsday Weiner scored her first collegiate goal! Sophomore defender Siobhan McCarthy also tallied her first assist. One thing this season has taught me is to take the little victories and turn them into big ones; if our attack can keep challenging and scoring like that I think we’ll be good to go moving forward. I won’t sit here and lie, this isn’t the plane ride home I anticipated nor is it the feeling I wanted to leave spring break with but with a game in two days we all just have to move on, onwards and upwards.