Team prepares for CIF after loss in league play

Will Mallory and Jaidev Pant

Despite having a rough start to the season, the boys’ lacrosse team finished the regular season with an overall record of 9-5 and is now preparing for playoffs.

The team bounced back from an 11-5 loss to St. Margaret’s High School on March 12 by winning seven straight games, one of which was against Loyola High School in the Wolverines’ Mission League opener on March 20. The squad had a strong first half and was up 6-2. The Wolverines controlled Loyola for the rest of the game, ultimately winning by a score of 10-8.

“Beating Loyola was a great experience because we really came together for a team win even though a lot of us were sick or injured,” defender Nik Grube ’21 said.

During this streak, the team went undefeated in the Mission League, allowing them to earn the No. 1 seed and home-field advantage for the Mission League tournament.

The team began the Mission League playoffs in the semi-finals at home against Chaminade College Preparatory High School. The game was close for the first three quarters, until the Wolverines ultimately pulled away in the fourth quarter, defeating the Eagles by a score of 13-9 on March 27.

“I think our team truly came together throughout the whole game,” attacker Owen Hudgins said. “We were firing on all cylinders and playing fast. Overall we put everything on the line and it paid off.”

Last year, the squad lost to Loyola in the Mission League final 14-2 and looked to get revenge this season. The Wolverines hosted their rival at home on April 13 for a chance at their second Mission League title in the last three years. The team started off strong and finished the third quarter up 9-6. However, the Wolverines let up six goals in the fourth quarter, losing by a score of 12-11. Although the loss was tough for midfielder Charlie Keller ’20, Keller said that the loss increased the squad’s concentration heading into the playoffs.

“The loss against Loyola hurt a lot but it pushed our team closer and made us more focused for the coming weeks,” Keller said.

After the loss, the squad played two more regular season games, losing to Foothill High School by a score of 17-13 and beating Oak Park High School by a score of 15-6. The Wolverines will begin the first round of playoffs on April 30. Keller said the team will concentrate on their team chemistry heading into the postseason.

“Our big focus going into playoffs is making sure we play as a team and support each other,” Keller ’20 said. “We know to have the most success, we need to pick each other up through adversity and play within ourselves.”