Historic start for lacrosse
February 24, 2017
This spring marks a historic moment for Monmouth College athletics as the school’s lacrosse program kicks off its inaugural season. The idea of adding lacrosse as a team sport was first considered seriously in 2014, shortly after Clarence Wyatt became president. Wyatt said there had been research conducted on the viability of lacrosse as a team sport before his arrival, but the research had been shelved for future study. With the help and direction of Athletic Director, Roger Haynes, the research was updated. Wyatt explained, “We went ahead with fleshing out a plan, including seeking membership from the Midwest Lacrosse Conference (MLC) for our men’s team and in the Midwest Women’s Lacrosse Conference team for our women’s team.” Spring 2017 was set as the inaugural season. Details of both the men’s and women’s games can be found on page 7.
Men’s season starts with a Win
The men’s lacrosse team is under the leadership of head coach Andrew Routt, and assistant coach Ben Sanberg. Routt has extensive experience coaching lacrosse and has full confidence in the group of athletes that currently compose the roster. “Monmouth is the third startup program I’ve been with, so there was no learning curve on my part. We’re definitely ahead of the programs I’ve been a part of in the past. Having coached in the MLC the last few years, I have a pretty good scouting report on our opponents.” The men’s team started hot with an impressive 9-5 victory over Carroll University, an exciting beginning for the program. “I’m thankful for Coach Routt, Coach Sanberg, and the entire team for helping me pick up the game. As a team we are strong and after that first game I think we are going to surprise some people this year,” explained newcomer and senior Scott Deunk.
Women’s season starts strong
Monmouth College is also making history fielding a women’s lacrosse team into the school’s athletic program. The women’s lacrosse team is also under the leadership of experienced coaches, head coach, Elizabeth Demara and, assistant coach, Michael Lafferty. Coach Demara competed at the Division I level for lacrosse and has experience as an assistant lacrosse coach at Alderson Broaddus University. Coach Lafferty is a Monmouth College, alum class of 2015, and a former Fighting Scots football player. Unfortunately, despite the expert coaching staff, the women’s team fell short in their first two games. Tiana Cintron, a member of the team’s offensive group, explained that she is confident but realistic about the future. “There are various aspects of our game that we need to work on, but I am confident that our team will improve as the season progresses. Not many of the players have had much experience regarding the sport, so it is vital that we practice the technical aspects of the game.” Cintron continued, “I am optimistic that the program will continue to improve over the years after more recruits are brought in. Our team is full of talented athletes; we simply need to refine our skills and continue to build team chemistry.” Considering this is the first lacrosse program at Monmouth College, it is impossible to predict the success of the team, but the program will surely diversify the campus.