The boys’ lacrosse team ended its first season under the leadership of Head Coach Erik Krum with a 10-8 loss against the rival Loyola Cubs May 7.
“I am very proud of the effort that we gave the third time playing Loyola after losing twice to them earlier in the season,” goalie Troy Hattler ’17 said. “We gave them all that they could take. A lot of young players stepped up in that game, so the future for Harvard-Westlake lacrosse is bright.”
The team finished 14-5 overall and 5-3 in Mission League play, besting last year’s 11-8 finish.
This improvement is in large part due not only to the new leadership of Krum but a wealth of young talent, such as Tommy Park ’18 and Zac Harleston ’17.
“There is definitely some pressure to fill the leadership roles, as three of our five captains were seniors,” Park said. “However, our junior class has done a great job leading. Zac Harleston and our other junior leaders did a great job this year of really leading by example. Not only us underclassmen, but everyone has to step up to fill the void left by the seniors.”
The departing seniors are also quite confident that the new leaders will be able to rise among the underclassmen and take the reins next year.
“I think Harleston and Paul [Rodriguez ’18] are going to step into big leadership roles next year,” Princeton University commit Phil Thompson ’16 said. “They’ve both already been impact players this year, and that should only continue as they improve over the summer. I also hope that Shane Houska ’17 can step up as a leader in his senior year. At times this year he was one of the best defenseman in the state, but inconsistency was an issue. I think that if he works over the summer and matures a little bit over the summer he can step up his leadership, get rid of that inconsistency and dominate next year.”
Now that the offseason has arrived, many younger players are looking to work on their game and do their part to step up next year.
“The summer is mainly left for the players to do their own work,” Rodriguez said. “We have already scheduled a few summer workouts, but for the most part this is when we have progress as individuals, then when fall rolls around, we will be back in the weight room and on the practice field. I think now that we have had more experience together as a unit we know what to expect from the teams in L.A. and will continue to prepare for that.”