Day Four: Today our team started off the day with a tour of Eastern University. Eastern’s head coach Kevin Wallace and assistant/Repetition Lacrosse coach Ray Kendrick first sat us down at their lacrosse field while they each took turns talking to our team about the different aspects of Eastern. The players were able to learn all about the lacrosse program and what their school has to offer; which included the teams Eastern plays out of conference, athletic sponsorships, fan/student support, types of players they are willing to recruit, and the admissions requirements to get in. Our team was then taken on a guided tour of campus by Coach Wallace, where we were shown historical buildings, ponds, frogs, and snapping turtles.
“Eastern University’s campus is really beautiful. You could definitely tell that lacrosse has a strong impact on the whole school and the students there. So that would be awesome to be a part of. The coaching staff was really kind and helping with all of our questions. They seemed like awesome guys to play for! I was really interested in the college and it looks like a great place to spend four years,” said Jared Kotter, 2014 Spanish Fork, Defense.
“Coming into it we didn’t really expect a whole lot from the campus, but as soon the team got to Eastern, it was really impressive. Everything was really nice, clean, a beautiful campus, and lots of greenery. It was really cool how the athletics center and everything regarding the athletes was centered in the middle of campus. It’s cool how the entire student body comes out and supports the teams and supports the athletes during their games,” said Parker Carson, 2014 Juan Diego, LSM
After we left Eastern, we drove across the street to Cabrini College, whose lacrosse program is consistently in the top 10 of Division III. Because of time restraints, we were only able to drive through Cabrini, but our players seemed to enjoy the quaintness of the campus. The team then headed on to Villanova University, took a drive around the campus, and stopped at Villanova Stadium for a team photo.
In preparation of our scrimmage against Dukes LC, our players had a little down time before we met and walked down to the field together as a team. Dukes had 35 players, 31 of which are Division 1 commits. We knew we had to come out strong by communicating and playing aggressive. We agreed to, and we played six-15 minute quarters. Our team played a long, tough game in which we never gave up. Even though we lost, it was a great learning experience for everybody on our team, and gave them memories they will never forget. A reporter from TopLaxRecruits.com was on hand, and he did a great article on our scrimmage. Our game was also broadcast live online at www.livestream.com/accesslacrosse. Thanks to coach Adam for filming, commentating, and helping set up the live broadcast!
“No matter whether you get anything directly out of a game, there is always a benefit of growing the game of lacrosse. Those kids will have fond memories of having played with Dukes Lacrosse, who they have heard about. Our kids get a chance to see how other teams play and how they communicate and act. Lacrosse has always been one big fraternity and it keeps growing,” said Dukes LC head coach Ebe Helm, whose team is a favorite for the Tri-State tourney Rising Senior AA.
“I thought the scrimmage was an eye-opener. Honestly I think that one of the big things is that, even though the score may have not reflected it, I think we can play with those kids if we practiced a little more as a team, then we are there,” said Thomas Stockham, 2015 Phillips Exeter, Goalie
“I don’t think this trip is about the final score at the end of it, it’s about the experience we get there, and the coaches have provided us with a great experience. Playing the Dukes today wasn’t about the final score, we know they are a good team, that’s why they are all committed kids. We hung with them the entire first quarter, and I’m glad they brought their ‘A’ game because that is what we needed today to actually see what we have to become,” said Dalon Hampshire, 2014 Bountiful, Goalie
“Dukes is a lot better than I gave them credit for. Honestly. They deserve everything they have gotten so far. It was a good experience to play against that caliber of a team, and I feel like we got better from it,” said Carter Bean, 2015 Desert Hills, Midfield
Post game we ordered Dalessandro’s cheesesteaks. Players had their choice of American, provolone, or Whiz, fried onions, lettuce, tomato, and hot and sweet peppers. A few angry customers and 23 cheesesteaks later, we had our delicious taste of local greatness. “This is the best thing I have ever tasted,” is what multiple players said. The players were so blown away with how good it was, Ian Hullinger and Parker Carson did a freestlye/beatbox.
Tomorrow Wasatch LC will be touring Drexel, Penn, and seeing the Philadelphia Art Museum.
Day Five: After a late night, the team slept in, then woke up and drove to into Philadelphia and was able to check out a couple of urban college campuses, Drexel University and the University of Pennsylvania, after seeing the rural campuses of Chestnut Hill, Eastern, and Cabrini over the last few days. We stopped on the way at the Philadelphia Art Museum first to see the Rocky statue. Our team raced up the steps to see who was the “Rocky” of our team.
“We ran up the Rocky steps, it was sweet, especially to do it as a team. Kind of a bonding moment,” said Connor Clay, 2014 Viewmont, Midfield. Once arriving at Drexel, everyone walked around the campus and took a look at the recreational facilities. Soon after, we went over to see Penn. The team was able to take a good look at their lacrosse practice fields before walking over the train tracks to Penn’s Franklin field. The stadium was very old, but super impressive. Our team learned that Franklin Field was where the Philadelphia Eagles (NFL) played before they had their own stadium, and the players were able to take pictures next to a wall with the history of the Eagles’ presence while they were in the stadium.
“Probably one of the sickest trips I have ever been on, I am not going to lie,” said Kade Patterson, 2015 Alta, LSM
The players finally had enough free time to get their first dip in the pool before we all piled into the vans for dinner at McNallys Tavern. Everyone was able to experience their famous sandwich, “The Schmitter.”
“The dinner, by far the best sandwich I have ever had in my entire life. Oh, it was so good. That is the best part of the night. That was insane!” said Grant Pierce, 2014 Judge, Attack
“Today was awesome. Seeing the Rocky steps was awesome. Dinner was phenomenal. Best dinner of the trip by far! Awesome,” said Casey Rose, 2014 Juan Diego, Midfield
“This is probably the sickest set up I have ever been to away from home, and I am really stoked about being on this trip. Because apart from playing the sport we love, we get to have fun at the same time, doing our own thing,” said Mario Garcia, 2014 Brighton, Midfield
Tomorrow Wasatch LC will travel to Princeton, New Jersey to gear up for their first game of the Tri-State National Lacrosse Festival at 6pm vs Tri-State Orange.
Follow us on Twitter: @WasatchLC