Men's lacrosse prepares for spring
The Colby men’s lacrosse team is coming off of its best season since 2002, and all signs point towards more of the same this year. Colby was seeded fifth in last year’s New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) tournament and had ten wins in the regular season for the first time in nearly a decade. Although Colby suffered a tough loss to end the season last year, the team is looking forward to getting this season started.
Senior tri-captain and preseason All-American Craig Bunker believes that “as a team we are easily in the best shape coming into the season of my four years here, thanks to the program given to us by Coach Domingos and the new trainer Dawn Strout.”
The training will be put to the test this weekend against Williams College, which always fields a competitive team. Bunker believes that “we are close to being game ready. We need another strong, focused week to make the necessary adjustments for Williams.”
The Williams game will also serve as a gauge as to how well the Mules will cope with the loss of eight players from the class of 2010, including All-American and second leading goal-scorer for Colby, Whit McCarthy. Bunker believes that the team has the talent to fill the voids, and mentioned fellow senior tri-captain Mark Squicciarino as “another guy who has been our leader offensively the past three years and will certainly be looked upon to do the same this year.” Chris Healy ’11 is the other senior captain and will anchor the solid Colby defense. Ian Deveau ’13 is coming off a tremendous first year, and was recognized for his efforts last year as the NESCAC Rookie of the Year.
The team had to go through a tough transition this past off-season, as former head coach John Thompson departed Colby for rival Amherst College due to financial reasons. Colby hired Justin Domingos, an assistant coach from powerhouse Gettysburg College, to fill the spot. Coach Domingos has gone above and beyond expectations in the eyes of the team. “The transition has been very easy. Coach Domingos was great this off-season. He stepped right in and took control of this program better than we could have ever asked for,” Bunker said. Colby also hired David Beriau of Elmira College who, in his first year as an assistant coach, led a Massachusetts high school team to its first conference championship in nearly a decade. He and Coach Jonathan Michaeles—now in his sixth year—round out the experienced coaching staff.
To start the season off on the right foot, the team raised $22,000 with their third annual Bench Press for Pulmonary Fibrosis fundraiser. "Our guys take this event personally, as two members of the Colby lacrosse family have lost their father to Pulmonary Fibrosis, and we were happy to continue to honor their family through this annual event," Domingos said. Each teammate collected donations for every repetition of 135 pounds he could complete. Bunker highlighted a few of his teammates’ efforts in helping the cause. “Tyler Cash ’12 had nearly 60 different donors, and John McIvor ’12 raised about $1,200, which I believe was the best on the team.” The Mules received props from the Chief Operating Officer of the Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation, Patti Tuomey. “The Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation is very honored to have the Colby lacrosse team raise funds for us each year," Tuomey said. "The support of these incredible young men has allowed us to kick off 2011 with an extremely successful event while raising much needed funds and awareness.”
After the Williams game this weekend, Colby will host Plymouth State on the Thursday before Spring Break.