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Boys’ Lacrosse Revamps Finishes Regular Season 16-0

Shannon Moss ’11
Staff Writer

Captain Kip Orban ’11 maintains possession in a May 19 match against Fairfield Ludlowe. |Photo by Eric Essagof

After finishing 10-8 last season, the Staples boys’ lacrosse team was looking to turn a good team into an even better team.

This season, they have done just that. The Wrecker’s surged into the beginning of the season crushing top FCIAC contenders, including powerhouse Ridgefield in an overtime win. However, the surge hasn’t ended yet, as the Wrecker’s are still enjoying an undefeated season with a recent 16-8 win over Westhill, and an overall record of 16-0.

With the assistence of head coach Paul McNulty, the Wreckers have motivated themselves and each other in order to reach their utmost potential as lacrosse players.

Jack Ambrose ’10, the “ground ball man” and a “very vocal leader”, according to McNulty, as well as one of the quad-captains, feels lucky to have a great coach overseeing a team of great talent.

“We got the best coach possible in coach McNulty, he makes us push ourselves,” said Ambrose, “and because we have such big goals this year we’ve been pushing each other as hard as possible as well.”

With what they have accomplished so far this season, their goals of winning a state championship are not too lofty. However, after an early loss in the FCIAC playoffs to St. Joe’s, the team is faced with their first adversity of the season. Ambrose added that having a great record for the regular season means nothing once playoffs come around, and the team has been preparing and staying focused practice after practice and game after game.

While quad-captains Nate Greenberg ’10, Austin Waiter ’10, Kip Orban ’11, and Ambrose lead the team, the balance of camaraderie of the entire team on and off the field has benefited them as well. When asked if either the defense or offense is stronger, Ambrose, a defender, joked, “of course I have to say defense,” but quickly shrugged off his own comment and added that they are “as balanced a team as they come.”

Additionally, Ambrose attributes some of the team’s success to the experience that the seniors have had.

“Last year we only had one senior on the team, and because of that, [this year’s seniors] got varsity experience a year earlier then expected,” said Ambrose, “and playing on the varsity level compared to JV or freshmen makes a huge difference.”

Other seniors on the team include Jeff Kelly ’10, one of the leading scorers, Kyle Mendelson ’10, an offensive leader, Paul LaHiff ’10, a versatile offender and defender, Keith Gelman ’10 on defense, Brandon Waiter ’10 and Seth Cadan ’10, both on defense.

In addition to the senior leaders, many juniors, such as Orban, Matt Yeager ’11, and Charlie Ross ’11 have contributed to the great record as well.

When asked what he thought was one of the determining factors of having such a great season, McNulty emphasized one thing: hard work.

“These kids have worked very hard to increase their stick skills. They have gone to camps, played in indoor leagues in fall and winter, attended indoor clinics in the winter and played on elite summer teams,” McNulty said. “This is what it takes to be one of the most competitive teams in the state.”

With the state championship just around the corner, the Wreckers are hoping to continue the success that they had during the regular season and keep working hard towards their goal of a state title.

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