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Promising potential: Boys varsity lacrosse adds seven freshmen to its roster

Lily Chen / The SPOKE

By Louisa Sandorff, Staff Reporter

Cheers echo through Teamer Field as freshman Whit Lukens dodges an opponent and makes a clean sidearm pass to his teammate. One of the youngest players on the roster, Lukens is a defender on the boys’ varsity lacrosse team. 

This spring, the team welcomed seven freshmen onto the varsity team: Lukens, Henry Cook, Liam Donovan, Brian Ford, Happy Mayer and Noah Uhrich. They are an integral part of the team, with two of them serving as starters.

“I commend all the freshmen for all the work they have put in and the fact that they have stepped up to play such a big role in the offense and defense,” sophomore defender Gunnar Flesher said. 

The new players occupy a wide variety of roles on the team, each bringing their own strengths and specialties. To further develop their skill sets, their fellow players say they have worked exceedingly hard to keep up with their teammates and adapt to the varsity level of play. 

“They bring different skills to the table that help make our defenses more diverse,” Flesher said. “They do make their mistakes, sometimes more than other players, but that is expected of them, and I think they are doing exceedingly well this year.”

Many of the freshmen played together on club teams for several years before joining the Conestoga team. Through their prior experiences together, they have become familiar with each other’s style of play and have formed strong bonds with one another. 

The freshmen attribute their success on the team to the support of upperclassmen players, their consistent training regimen and playbook strategies. The team emphasizes fine-tuning smaller skills during practices to ensure that mistakes don’t occur during games. 

“At practice, the biggest thing we work on is just making sure the little things are perfect, even if it’s just passing and catching, shooting or our plays. The little things should be perfect,” Flesher said. 

Team members believe that bonding and having a strong sense of unity are just as important as practicing and they help players come together cohesively on the field. One way the team prioritized unity this year was by including new players in team bonding activities such as volunteering at youth lacrosse clinics and dinners.

“We typically gather at a teammate’s house for a team dinner on the night before our home games,” Lukens wrote in a text message. “Everybody has been welcoming and supportive. They helped me find my role on the team.”

This strong bond has helped it have a successful season, winning 14 of its 20 games. It also helped Conestoga qualify for the postseason, winning in the first round of district playoffs against Council Rock South with a score of 9-3. The team advanced to the next round of districts, where they ultimately lost to Springfield on Thursday, May 16.

Lukens is excited for the possibilities that the future holds for the team.

“I hope we can put together a nice run in the playoffs next year,” Lukens wrote in a text message. “I hope that in the next couple years we can become a dominant Central League team.”

Louisa Sandorff can be reached at [email protected].

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Louisa Sandorff
Louisa Sandorff, Staff Reporter
Louisa Sandorff can be reached at [email protected].