In its third season, the University of Indianapolis men’s lacrosse team is focusing on the fundamentals of what it means to be successful in order to adjust to entering the Great Lakes Valley Conference, according to Head Men’s Lacrosse Coach Greg Stocks.
“We’ve gone back to the basics to reestablish what we are as a team,” Stocks said. “[We] started focusing more on the individual and what each individual needs to do to win.”
The Hounds hosted the Seton Hill University Griffins in their first game of the season on Feb. 10. Seton Hill scored six goals in the first quarter before allowing UIndy to score with 45 seconds on the clock. The Griffins scored another four goals going into the second quarter, and allowed the Hounds two, ending the half with a score of 11-3.
Junior attack Tyler Johnston and junior midfield Scott Lapoe scored the last two goals by the Hounds in the third quarter, while the Griffins scored two of their own. In the fourth, the Griffins added another five points to their lead and took the win 1-5.
Junior attack Parker Kump said that the team has high standards for themselves going into this season, and the loss to Seton Hill gave them a wake up call.
“I think showing up and checking our egos at the door [would have helped our game],” Kump said. “You don’t really want to learn the hard way, but I think that’s what we did. We got slapped in the face and so far, we’re bouncing from it good.”
Both Stocks and Kump agree the team works well as a whole and are a close group.
“We’re a really tight knit group,” Kump said. “There aren’t separate groups and we’re one big team. We’re rivals on the field but in the locker room we’re like best friends.”
According to Stocks, the team needs to take it’s confidence on the field and turn it not aggression to compete with teams like Seton Hill.
“I think we could’ve been more aggressive from the get go,” Stock said. “There were spots where we did see [the aggression] and good things happened on both sides of the field. Whether it was putting on pressure and getting it in their hands to cause a turnover or taking a good shot.”
With the team independent of a conference last year, entering the GLVC was an exciting accomplishment and confidence boost. Stocks said that it was a perfect fit for the team and to share a conference with almost all of the other UIndy athletic organizations was a big benefit.
“It’s not like [my] freshman year where we had the ECAC but it’s good were in the GLVC and it gives us the opportunity to host the tournament,” Kump said. “Our goal is to win the tournament and go on to the NCAA tournament.”
Next, the team will travel to Wingate, N.C. to face the Wingate University Bulldogs on Feb. 24 at 1 p.m.