By Samantha Meyer
The Cleveland State University men’s lacrosse team has had their best season to date, notching six wins under their belt to make it the most successful season in the program’s young history.
When the lacrosse team is not hard at work practicing for upcoming games, they are spending their time giving back to the community. It’s no surprise to hear the Cleveland State lacrosse team racks up the most volunteering hours of any other athletic sport. The men work hard every week to give back to the community.
“Our main volunteering comes from urban community schools where we go on a weekly basis during the fall to teach lacrosse to the inner city kids.” junior Justin Conner said, “It’s a nice experience because you get to know certain kids on a personal level, and a few of them even came up to me after our recent community game. It’s really nice to know that your face is being remembered and you’re doing something they appreciate.”
Recently, the team hosted a military appreciation home game on April 2, where they donned U.S. military-inspired uniforms courtesy of apparel partner UN1TUS. After the game, the game-worn military designed jerseys were auctioned off, helping raise $6,616 for the USO of Northern Ohio. The Vikings faced Canisius University during their military night, defeating the Golden Griffins 19-10.
During the game against Canisius, the Vikings finished out the first half with a 13-2 lead over the Golden Griffins. After giving up two goals to Canisius within the first two minutes of the game, the Vikings rallied back and scored on three consecutive possessions. With the lead now, the Vikings were able to pick up a hard fought win. Conner believes that the Vikings are a team that has always played hard and that mindset has helped them this season.
“We play hard. Harder than any of our opponents,” Connor said. “This mindset has helped us really blow some teams out of the water.”
Having great performances were freshmen Nick Polydoras, who had season bests with four goals and five points, and Andrew Hamilton, who won 15 of 25 faceoffs. Junior Nick Wendel also had a career-best game, scoring five goals and tying the school record.
On April 6, the lacrosse men secured their second straight win and their fifth win over their past seven games, defeating Bonaventure University 18-5. Taking place at our very own Krenzler Field, the Vikings captured their sixth win for the season, setting a record high for the program.
The Vikings scored 10 straight goals for the team in the first 20 minutes of the game, giving them a large lead. Hamilton helped CSU get possession again with a 17-for-21 faceoff score.
In play action, by sophomore Tristan Hanna and Wendel, helped the Vikings secure the win. Hanna had a game-high and career-high six points while Wendel added four points, making it his third straight game scoring at least three points.
In the game against Robert Morris University, the Vikings were able to jump out to a early 2-1 lead in the first period, but Robert Morris was able to rally from behind in the second period, going up 7-0 to take a halftime lead of 8-2. The Colonials kept up the pressure to win the game 13-8 and end the Vikings win streak at two.
With only two games left in the season, the Vikings are looking forward to expanding their win record.
“We’re looking forward to playing Detroit Mercy.” Conner said, “We play them every year, and it becomes a very chippy and competitive game. They’re definitely a rival of ours.”
This Vikings will take on Detroit Mercy University on April 24 at home, which will conclude their 2019 season.