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Daily Cheese: Chaptown Vengeance

chaptown vengeance

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VENGEANCE by Matt Walrath, Senior LSM

The picture (above) depicts the Michigan Men’s Lacrosse team sideline in celebration while two Chapman lacrosse players sit on their sideline hanging their head in disbelief that they had just lost the national championship for the second year in a row. The title “bad memories” could not be more fitting.

A picture might be worth a thousand words but this photo captures the one thing that is motivating every player on the Chapman Men’s Lacrosse roster, aside from the will to win, vengeance.

This year’s team is making it their goal to outwork every team in the nation to the point where lose is a word only used to describe what will happen to their opponents.  Senior midfielder and two-time All-American Chris Small told me “hard work beats talent when talent does not work hard.  That is why we lost last year, and why we are going to win games this year.”

Everyone on the Chapman roster has one central goal: to win the MCLA Championship.  Every self-respecting team in the nation possesses that same goal, but to understand why the Chapman Lacrosse team takes this goal just as serious, if not more serious than any other team in the country, one would have to understand the team’s history.

“When I first saw these guys play I asked them what their record was last year, they told me 8-7.  I thought to myself, who the hell beat you guys?” said Head Coach Michael Wood.  The year Coach Wood took the helm the team went 19-2, their only loss to an MCLA team came in the national championship game when they lost to #1 ranked Michigan by three goals.

The following year Chapman had a record of 18-3 and lost once again to #1 ranked Michigan in the National Championship game.  Coach Wood does not take credit for these phenomenal seasons, though.  “Those teams were made up of Donnelly’s players and I understand that.”Chad Donnelly was head coach of the team prior to Wood.

Although Wood considers the past two seasons to be successes, he is still haunted by what could have been.  “Last year in the finals there were so many things that haunt me….maybe if one or two of those things had gone our way we wouldn’t be having this conversation.”

You would be hard pressed to find a Chapman player that thinks losing the National Championship constitutes a successful season.  They will not be content until a ring is on each and every one of their fingers.

Sophomore attackman Andrew Clayton has been taking steps to improve his conditioning because he learned last year that you have to be ready when the coaches call on you to make a big play in the fourth quarter, or overtime.  He has increased the amount of conditioning and shooting drills that he does on his own time.

He isn’t the only one.  Senior midfielder and team Captain Blake Whitcomb has practiced his shot to the point where he “feels comfortable shooting left-handed from anywhere.”  He also took advantage of the newly granted access to the weight room and strength and conditioning coach which allowed him to put on seven lean pounds.

Keeping reading here.

And they do look to be working hard in Babe City. Here’s some footage of the first practice:



– The Washington Stealth are 3-0 and I think they call Cam Sedgwick he-man.

– Wells Stanwick, a junior at Boy’s Latin and one of the top high school lacrosse recruits in the nation, hit a game winner last Thursday night.

– Boston Cannons player Nate Evans attended the Muscular Dystrophy Association’s 11th annual Muscle Team event last week.

– College of St. Rose, a DII school in Albany, NY has announced it will add a men’s lacrosse team for the 2010-11 season.

– One Edmonton Rush fan is pumped it’s NLL season. He’s even dubbed Brodie Merrill “The Wall.”

– And finally, a close up of The Hopkins Lacrosse Crab:

Hopkins Lacrosse Crab
via More In Baltimore
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  • Here's what I saw:
    A bunch of guys half-assing dynamics.
    A circle stretch (no team that circle stretches has ever won anything)
    A bunch of turnovers in 6 on 6 and goalie save on his knees

    Where did you see the “working hard” part? Not saying they aren't working hard, but that video didn't show anything that everyone else isn't doing.

    • That's west coast working hard.

      If you think that's bad you would have hated to see our team's patented “starfish stretch” prior to practice and games. It consisted of laying on the ground spread eagle and closing your eyes.

      Highly recommended.

    • Critical much? (criticizing how they stretch as a team and dropped balls on the first day of january lax? I know, sticks should always be perfect when you get back from a two month break). This was not the first “official practice”. It was a captain's lead practice with no coaches, which is why it was so laid back. The first real practice was the next day.

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