Team does not meet its players’ expectations, loses in CIF Finals

Team does not meet its players’ expectations, loses in CIF Finals

Midfielder Sultan Daniels ’19 runs down the field in a 14-10 win against Agoura High School on May 2. (Photo Credit : Keila McCabe/Chronicle)

After losing by one goal in the Mission League finals, the boys’ lacrosse team finished the season with an overall record of 12-6, ultimately losing in the semifinals of playoffs May 4.

After defeating Oak Park High School 15-6 in its final regular season game, the team kicked off the playoffs at home against Newbury Park High School April 30. It entered the game seeded fourth in the Los Angeles Championship Playoffs, while Newbury Park entered the playoffs seeded 13th . The team outscored Newbury Park by 10 goals in the second and third quarter, eventually winning the game by a score of 16-4. Players said the win helped improve their mentality heading into the rest of the playoffs.

“Beating Newbury Park in the first game was a great feeling, especially after starting off rocky in the first part of the game, and we gained a healthy and competitive mindset going into the rest of the playoffs,” midfielder Ian Han ’21 said.

The squad then hosted Agoura High School at home May 2, winning by a score of 14-10. Defender Nik Grube ’21 attributed the win to pregame preparation.

“The keys for the Agoura game were to really focus on ourselves and executing the whole game, which started with having a great warm up and our attitudes going into the game,” Grube said.

With this win, the team advanced to the semifinals of the Los Angeles Championship Playoffs, where it faced Palos Verdes High School, the No. 1 seed in the playoffs on May 4. Players said the game was a defensive battle and in the first three quarters. The squad headed into the fourth quarter tied with Palos Verdes. However, Palos Verdes pulled away, scoring six goals in the fourth quarter and winning by a score of 9-3.

“It was not the outcome we wanted,” midfielder Gideon Hyman ’20 said. “But, everyone fought really hard and I was very proud of our season.”

In addition, the team  had five players on the all Mission League First Team and three players on the second team. 

“Winning first team all Mission League was very unexpected, but something I hoped for, so I was elated when I found out that I won,” Han, who was chosen as a first-team midfielder, said. 

The squad will head into next season without important seniors, such as attacker Asher Early ’19, defender Donovan Econn ’19 and midfielder Harrison Listen ’19, all of whom made the all Mission League First Team. In total, the team had 10 seniors on the roster. 

“[Our current situation] is a similar situation as last year when we also graduated a lot of seniors, so again we’re gonna have to rely on some younger guys to step up,” Grube said.

Midfielder Brody Listen ’21 said the team has a lot of work to do in the off-season. 

“Our goal heading into next season is to be as prepared as possible for the road ahead,” Listen said. “It is important that we outwork our opponents and do what is necessary in the off-season to feed our future success.”

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