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isu_playerIt was another season that came down to the wire for Illinois State lacrosse.  We were put in the same position as last year, having to win our last game to qualify for a spot in the conference tournament. We just did not come to play against Missouri and they took full advantage of that. Missouri took a commanding lead at halftime (6-1) and put us against the wall. The Redbirds were able to battle back but landing short of a playoff spot by two goals. The final score was 10-9 and I really believe that we should have won that game, but Missouri wanted it more. Nothing against our players and each player played their hearts out, it is just always disappointing to work hard all season and come so close to making the playoffs. Especially given the magnitude of what we were playing for this year, dedicating our season to our fallen teammate.

This year proved to be a very great year for a young Redbird team. We are only losing 6 seniors, all who made a huge impact on our team but we have a young team to look forward to next year. It proves to be an eye-opener for the younger guys to work harder in the off-season to come out and be a better team next year. We were able to get some great games in but I think to make the push to become a more potent team more out of conference games against higher powered teams should be in the future scheduling.

I am very interested to see how the MCLA national tournament plays out given that there is a lot of talk about how teams were seeded. Most of which stems from wins and losses but obviously there was some method to the MCLA selection committee on why they seeded how they did. There is never going to be a collective agreement to seeding for teams and I think that teams just need to go out and worry about winning their match ups.

First round match ups are up for grabs and I strongly believe there will be a few upsets that will take place.

Another year has ended and the Illinois State lacrosse team looks to pick up where they left off next year. Thanks to e-Lacrosse for allowing me to post my nonsense thoughts, even though our head coach believes I wrote all of this with a crayon. Also thanks to all the supporters for the Illinois State team it is greatly appreciated. As always look for updates on our team through our website: www.redbirdlacrosse.com.

Have a great summer and we will see you next year.

vs_kansas2Illinois State Lacrosse preparing for a long weekend. The Redbirds will be traveling to wonderful Milwaukee Wisconsin where the weather will be chilly and the scenery will be nothing but cornfields. Nothing against Wisconsin, I love the state but the drive from Bloomington-Normal to Wisconsin consists of nothing but cows and cornfields.

There is nothing new that is happening with our program, oh wait yes there is. This weekend we will be taking our own vehicles to the games (university certified) because the university vans that we were supposed to have were double-booked leaving us to find another means of transportation. This is not my first choice of transportation but given the little time period to find alternative travel means we had to resort to our own cars. We will be packing up in 7 vehicles to travel 3 and half hours away to play some very tough teams. We will be up against University of Wisconsin Milwaukee Friday night, Minnesota-Mankato State Saturday afternoon and end the weekend at 9:45 AM on Sunday against Marquette. These are three out of conference games for our team and should prove to be some very good competition. It has been a rocky week having to cancel practice Tuesday due to weather, leaving us with only two days of full practice to prepare.

I have instilled in our team that we need to put aside the issues that have come about with not being able to take vans and have tried to keep a sense of fun during practice. This is a very competitive sport but with any sport there has to be a level of fun to keep everyone enjoying what they are doing. If it is all work and no play that would not make for an enjoyable season. I think keeping the practices very intense with a sense of fun makes for a very tight nit group of guys. Of course nothing can ever be perfect but we have always strived to be the best of friends on this team. I am a firm believer in the fact that if you enjoy the people you are around that is going to make for a better team.

I think everything that is attached with being a club sport makes you realize just how much each and every other team’s administrators work at making sure the season goes off without a hitch. I salute all administrators present and past on each club team and varsity level team because I have experienced first hand the ups and downs that are associated with running a team. Most of the time it is a grueling task of making sure all the little details are filed out but in the end you see the product that has become and the way that everyone meshes together.

Wish us luck this weekend and we hope to bring back 3 wins to Bloomington- Normal and get ready for our conference games in the month of April. Look for an update on this weekend when we arrive back home. Good luck to other teams that are competing this weekend.

team-picFirst off let me just come clean and say this is my first time ever blogging. I could not even tell you what goes into a blog or what the term blogging even means.

I’ll start off introducing myself. My name is Mike Synek and I am currently the President for the Illinois State Club Lacrosse team. We are associated with the Great Rivers Lacrosse Conference a part of the MCLA. We are strictly a club team that funds our entire program from individual dues. The school gives us minimal support financially which makes it quite hard to not be in the red at the end of the year. We have been around since 1988 and are still the oldest standing club here at the university. Illinois State is located in central Illinois in the wonderful city of Bloomington-Normal. Bloomington-Normal is the usual college town with our local drinking holes and house parties, usually ending up in poor decisions and a headache in the morning.

Back to the lacrosse though, this year we are really re-building as we lost a lot of seniors last year, most of which had been with the club for all 4 years of their college career. We took a hard blow late last year when we lost one of our closest and hardest working teammate. Jason Nash, our teammate, brother and friend passed away at the early age of 22. It really hit us older guys hard because we have been through thick and thin with Jason, and we are still trying to pick up the pieces. Our team is just like any other club team in the United States you come together more as brothers which makes you a stronger club, and losing a brother never comes without the emotional anguish. We will never forget Jason and if you knew him you would not either. We will be playing this year dedicated to him and will display a memorial patch for his remembrance on our jerseys this year.

Our club team has been working very hard this winter, working in the facilities that we can get. We were given the graces of having a very talented freshman class, and many of them will be filling the shoes of starters who graduated. I really enjoy playing club ball more than anything because it gives me the opportunity to see what it takes to run a team while also being able to be a “college” student. My brother plays division 3 lacrosse in Michigan and I know his schedule is brutal. As much as I love the game of lacrosse, and I have been playing since I was in 5th grade, I enjoy being a college student as well. I came from a high school where there was not much showcasing for our players and we did not have the opportunities to get noticed by colleges as much as my high school does now. I would have loved to be given the opportunity to play at a divisional level but by the time I was getting recruited it was too late.

mcla

Illinois State lacrosse has brought great joy to my life given the individuals that I get to step on the field with day in and day out. Those individuals are going to be the ones that I will forever be in contact with, and I can’t wait to come back in 5 years and get to play with them again. Illinois State really puts a lot of emphasis on getting to know one another through social events and those are the times you will never forget. More soon to come stay tuned…

The Zags are gearing up for another exciting lacrosse season. The Men’s Lacrosse team at Gonzaga has begun preparing for a rigorous 17 game schedule that includes 3 top 25 teams. The team will travel to San Diego and play some very tough competition and is pleased to announce 6 home games.

After a successful training camp in early January, the Zags have been practicing hard in anticipation for their first game. The team is proud to announce 8 freshman recruits coming from all over the country. Even more promising, the Zags return 10 seniors and 9 starters overall. Below is the 2009 Gonzaga Men’s Lacrosse schedule:

2/6 7:00 PM- VS. PLU @ Curtis High School Tacoma
2/8 12:00 PM- VS. UC Chico State @ Queen Anne Bowl Seattle
2/13 7:00 PM- @ University of San Diego
2/14 2:00 PM- VS. Loyola Marymount @ Coronado High San Diego CA
2/15 1:00PM- @ San Diego State University
2/16 11:00 AM- @ UCSD
2/21 1:00 PM VS. Oregon State University*
2/22 12:00 PM- VS. University of Oregon*
2/27 7:00 PM- @ University of Idaho*
2/28 1:00PM- @ Washington State University*
3/22 6:00 PM- Alumni Game
3/27 7:00 PM- VS. University of Puget Sound
3/29 12:00 PM- VS. Montana State University
4/4 1:00 PM @ Boise State University*
4/11 1:00 PM @ Portland State University*
4/18 1:00 PM @ University of Montana @ Washington Grizzly Stadium*
4/25 1:00 PM VS. University of Washington*
4/26 12:00 PM VS. Simon Fraser University*
5/2-5/3 PNCLL Final Four Playoffs*
5/12-5/16 National Tournament in Denver Colorado

All home games are played on Mulligan Field on the GU campus. The field is at the corner of Cincinnati and Desmet.

Hope to see you all on the sidelines!

The Gonzaga Men’s Lacrosse Team

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