Zach Thomann, Assistant Sports Editor
As spring break comes to an end, students file back into the dorms and classrooms, but some athletes never left. Members of the men and women’s lacrosse teams were still on campus starting off their season.
The men’s lacrosse team started out its season 1-2. During the break, the team had three games scheduled, but the second was postponed after winter storm Stella buried Charles A. Gaetano Stadium.
In the first game during spring break, the Pioneers defeated SUNY Potsdam 14-11. Junior Ryan Desveaux led Utica with four goals. The story of the game was how the Pioneers started the game down three goals, but responded in the second and third periods with seven unanswered points. Head coach for the Utica men’s lacrosse team Mike Parnell hopes this win is one of many to come.
“Our goal of the season is to become a playoff team and play in May,” Parnell said.
In the other game during break, Parnell’s team lost to SUNY Brockport 8-13. Sophomore Dominic Castiglia led Utica with three goals.
Coach Parnell said the team needs to keep improving throughout the season especially with its face-off efficiency. The pioneers play next against Keuka College at home on Wednesday.
The women’s lacrosse team had a tough spring break going 0-2 against Clarkson University and Wellesley College. The lady Pioneers are now 1-3 this season but head coach Kristin St. Hilaire is excited to try and turn things around.
“We are young and making young mistakes right now,” St. Hilaire said. “Our goal is to clean those up heading into conference play.”
Senior Rebecca Plunkett leads the team with 12 goals and 14 points overall. Coach St. Hilaire hopes that Plunkett will continue to be a leader on the field.
The team will travel to Cazenovia College on Wednesday.
The big news during spring break was the collapsing of the Utica dome. It was an outlet for many spring teams to use if the weather was not fit for players to be outside. The coaches of the lacrosse teams view the news as unfortunate and a setback, but nothing that can’t be overcome.
“We practice and play outside,” Parnell said. “Without the dome, we will have to toughen up during the bad weather season.”
Coach St. Hilaire remains hopeful that her team can play on the turf for the remainder of the season and will be looking forward to the dome being rebuilt.
No matter what the weather does for the rest of the season, both teams at Utica have the same goal – Reach the playoffs and have fun.
“Our kids love the game,” St. Hilaire said. “They love this team and want to be out there playing in any opportunity they can.