By Adam Hallenbeck & Taylor Viles – 1851 Staff
Lasers from women’s to men’s lacrosse huddle on the field during their games against Salem State University (L) and Wentworth Institute of Technology (R).
Photos Courtesy of Corinne Ciraldo
Confidence and dedication; that’s all it takes in the eyes of the players to take their team to the top.
After coming up short, both the women and men’s lacrosse teams were ranked second in the preseason GNAC standings and stand today as one of the top teams to beat in their respective leagues.
The women’s lacrosse team sits behind Johnson and Wales University ( JWU), while the men are placed after Norwich University. When asked about the prediction, players responded with strong confidence.
“I think it’s accurate, as to what happened last season, but I think we are going to do a lot better this year,” said sophomore defender Hannah Thurston. After entering the postseason with a 13-3 record and the second seed, the women’s team finished runner up in the GNAC conference finals after falling to JWU, 20-9.
With the new season, the women’s team looks to make a difference a year later. “I think our team chemistry has picked up a lot. We lost [Taylor Falco and Taylor Yandow]…but everyone on the team and the in- coming freshmen have stepped up into their roles,” said junior attacker Mandy Brock.
Now 7-2 overall and 2-1 in conference, the lady Lasers sit tied for first with the strongest overall record. They share the spot with St. Joseph’s of Maine College, JWU and Emmanuel College.
After Falco and Yandow graduated, a new spotlight has emerged for senior Jordan McComb. “She is our top scorer and she is our top midfielder, but she puts in more…she dedicates her life to this team, she deserves every hype that she gets,” said Thurston. Most recently, McComb scored her 100th career goal in part of a seven goal game as she was honored GNAC Player of the Week on March 18.
Last season, the men’s lacrosse team entered the postseason as the two seed in the conference tournament, but was upset in the semi final game 11-10 to sixth ranked JWU in overtime. “Our coach said going into the season being ranked that high means nothing,” said standout first-year goalkeeper Alex Beauchemin. “We have a very good squad, the biggest part of it is going to be us sticking together, not crumbling…and always improving; not settling for where we’re at.”
They came into this season with an attitude to make it further this time around. “Last year, we came up short, but coming into this year we have a lot of fire,” said Beauchemin.
So far this season, the men’s team has delivered with a 7-1 overall record and 2-0 in conference play. This team hasn’t given their opponents a chance to compete,
as many of the recent results have been lopsided. In their most recent game, the Laser’s trounced Regis College by a final score of 20-1. “It’s a whole team effort… not one person is standing out, it’s everyone working together and that’s how we’re playing so well. We’re playing as a unit, not individual players,” said Beauchemin.
The Lasers’ scoring this year has come from a variety of players, but is led by senior captain Mike Susi, who in only five games has registered 15 goals and five assists.
Every team strives to win as many games as possible, but within all the success, how does a team stay motivated and interested? Beauchemin says, “Winning is like chasing
a high and once you win a game it feels so good to be where you’re at…you don’t want to do anything else but keep winning.”
The sole drive of success powers the men’s team into a heavily contested conference. Currently, the team sits atop the GNAC standings in the young season, sharing the spot with Saint Joseph’s College of Maine and Emmanuel College. Beauchamin continued, “…[Winning] drives us to keep playing as good as we can. We do have a loss on our record this season… but we know we can do better than this.” The only loss of the season came by the hands of Roger Williams University by a score of 9-5. The team is looking forward to their next matchup with the Hawks.
While the men hope to reach the NCAA tournament for the second time in three years, the women hope to see their first since 2016. “Coming off that loss from last season, we were hungry to win. This is our year,” said Thurston.