By Thomas McManus ’20
The varsity lacrosse team is coming off a 2016 season with a record of 11-7, which secured the Flyers a spot in the finals, but does not accurately portray the dominance seen in recent years. However, the varsity Flyers are poised to plow through the competition in this upcoming lacrosse season. Recently, USA Today Sports recognized Chaminade in its Super 25 Boys Lacrosse Expert Ranking, a ranking based on teams’ past seasons, the quality of players, and the strength of schedule. Chaminade was listed 7th in the nation and 1st in the state of New York. While this acknowledgement is prestigious, the Flyers still have a lot of work to do this spring.
Head Coach Jack Moran plans not to let a high ranking get to the team’s head. While he does believe the team’s talent this year is truly remarkable, he explains that “talent doesn’t always translate to success,” and that they have a lot of hard work in front of them if they want to be successful. He hopes that if every player accepts his role and works towards a team goal rather than individual milestones, the team can reach its full potential.
This year, the team will be led by senior captains Frank Tangredi, Matt Chmil, Regan Quinn, and Joseph de Lyra. However, the Flyers are not solely reliant on the senior class, thanks to a strong junior class, which has compiled thirty consecutive wins over its two years in play. Coach Moran notes that the juniors have “blended well with the seniors” and will play an important role in the season.
Eagerly waiting to topple the Flyers are impressive squads from Massapequa, Fairfield Prep, Greenwich, Manhasset, and others. The most difficult and exciting games, though, may come from McDonogh High School, St. Anthony’s High School, and the Patriots of Ward Melville High School. All three of these teams reached the top 25 on the same list from USA Today that has Chaminade at 7th.
First, the Flyers take on McDonogh on March 25. The 6th-ranked Eagles (the only team ranked higher than Chaminade on their schedule), from Owings Mills, Maryland, went 15-1 last year, with wins over Gonzaga High School, Culver Academy, Severn School, Loyola Blakefield, and Boys’ Latin School of Maryland, all top 25 teams. Their only loss was to Bullis School, 13th in this year’s rankings.
Longtime rival of the Flyers, the Friars of St. Anthony’s, hold the 18th spot. They managed to defeat Chaminade three times last year, once at Chaminade, once at home, and again in the finals at Mitchel Field. This year, Chaminade will seek revenge on April 5 at Ott Field and again on May 18 at St. Anthony’s in Melville.
Ward Melville, from East Setauket, NY, will face off against Chaminade on April 8 at Ward Melville High School. The Patriots finished last season at 18-4, including a victory against Chaminade. Their four losses came against West Islip, Connetquot, Smithtown West, and Victor.
Coach Moran shared his own thoughts on each of these three teams, saying that “it’s hard to say which matchup will be the toughest.” While it is unclear which team presents the greatest challenge, each game will certainly be a nail-biter.
With McDonogh, he says, “there is a different style of lacrosse that’s more focused on skills and finesse, which can be attributed to their being from Maryland. Saint Anthony’s, meanwhile, has a more powerful approach to the game. Finally, Ward Melville implements different offenses and defenses throughout the game. Therefore, each team and even each play comes with a different challenge.”
Nonetheless, Coach Moran states the team goes into every game expecting a win, especially given their recently improved depth and speed. Their regular season kicks off Wednesday, March 22 on Ott Field versus Massapequa and will continue until May 18 at Saint Anthony’s.
Make sure to come support the Flyers in their campaign to avenge their crushing loss in the finals last season by using the Athletics Calendar on the school website to find opponents, dates, and locations.