In what is certainly some kind of reaction to the yearlong Covid-19 Pandemic, I have anxiously anticipated this Spring more than any previous March 21. The trajectory of “the curve” and the growing momentum of the vaccination drive, have provided cause for optimism. Combine them with some bursts of lovely weather (it is 70 degrees and sunny outside, right now), and I have to say that my outlook has not been better, in more than a year.
Also coinciding with this change of seasons, has been my return to coaching Youth Lacrosse. This will be my first full week of practicing with both teams. We had Boys Practice on Monday (and again this evening) and the Girls on Tuesday and Thursday. I think I mentioned in the most recent post, that it has been awhile since I have coached Youth Lacrosse. I have been trying to brush up on the rules and age appropriate coaching methods. Yesterday, I spent a couple of hours on the @USLacrosse website, trying to bring myself up to speed. I have felt somewhat uncomfortable going into these practices, but have come away, each time, feeling like it went pretty well, and that the kids definitely got something out of it. There has been no shortage of enthusiasm, so while there have been challenges, it has definitely been fun, and has me looking forward to the next Practice.
I also took some time this week to watch a few college games. Tuesday, I tuned in to the all new, “Hurst Sports Network” (the home of Mercyhurst Sports), for the Lady Lakers’ game against PSAC West Opponent, Seton Hill. Mercyhurst got off to a slow start and quickly trailed 3-0. They would battle back, but still trailed 7-5, at the half. Most glaringly, they lost the battle in the Draw Circle, 12-1 in the first half! They continued to show resilience, but were never able to slow Seton Hill down long enough to mount a serious comeback. They did do somewhat better on the Draws in the second half and they hung tough, throughout. The Lakers have a lot of young players, who are playing big roles. I expect the team to improve over the course of the season, and with the new PSAC Format, they will certainly have ample opportunity to reach the playoffs.
Yesterday afternoon, I watched the University of New Haven host Bentley in an NE10 Conference Game. My interest in this one (other than it being a matchup of two ranked teams), was New Haven Charger, number 10, Ivanna Hernandez, a Freshman out of Brentwood. Ivanna was on the last FLG Team, I coached, and has made it back onto the field after suffering, the dreaded ACL tear. I had not seen her play, since that day. So, though I was in my living room, I was very happy to see her take the field (and with no knee brace!). It just wasn’t UNH’s day as they never recovered from an early 3-0, deficit. They made several runs at Bentley, but were never able to solve the Bentley Goaltender, whose aggressive positioning on 8 meter free positions frustrated the Chargers all day, en route to a 12-8 defeat for New Haven. I could see some great potential in New Haven and look forward to seeing more of them this season.
Finally, last night, while watching the Rangers dismantle the Flyers for the second straight time, I also tuned in to the Duke vs. Syracuse Men’s Lacrosse game, on my phone. I have not watched much Men’s Lacrosse in the past few years, having grown to prefer the Women’s game, and having a stronger bond with the Women’s game. But since I am coaching boys, again, I thought I should try to get re-acquainted with it. I picked the right game! Duke was able to build a pretty big lead before SU came roaring back to take a one goal lead at 14-13. Duke was able to respond, and go up 15-14, before a last ditch effort by the Orange was spectacularly, thwarted by the Duke Goalie, as time ran out! It was being called the “game of the year” on social media, this morning, glad I decided to check it out.
I’m off to Hempstead, now, for Boys Practice!