Editor’s note: Stephen Ryan is a freshman Middie from West, Islip, NY. We caught up with him to get his take on the Eagles season as they compete for the PCLL crown and a birth at Nationals.
Boston College: Soaring to Denver
By Stephen Ryan
Even more strikingly, since its establishment in 1997 every MCLA Championship Game has featured two competitors from the West. It is easy to see, then, why top northeast headliner Boston College (#11) is playing with a chip on its shoulder in an effort to bring the MCLA trophy to the sport’s capital region for the first time.
The BC Eagles are the defending champions of the PCLL and have also won three of the past six division championships. Nothing less is expected this year, as a repeat is eagerly anticipated by the squad. In addition, the Eagles feel they have something to prove, especially on the defensive side of the ball. Many doubted the Eagles concerning this area at the commencement of the season, due to the departure of all three starting long-poles and goalie standout T.R. Hoffman from a year ago. But captain Mark Pohlman and fellow senior Mike O’ Sullivan have stepped into leadership roles alongside 6’5” newcomer Kevin Wright – providing for a less notorious but perhaps equally resistant defensive front. And Soph Rob Ventura has filled the stud’s shoes in goal, establishing his own name by posting a top five national save percentage.
The Eagles have started their league season on the right foot once again, defeating UConn and BU decisively in its first two contests. They are unquestionably the favorite to repeat and claim an automatic bid to nationals again, but still they cannot overlook the remaining league schedule. The team’s main competition concerning league play remains the 3-1 Northeastern Huskies, who will travel across Bean-town on April 24 for a season finale that could determine national tournament berth. But if they continue to play with the tenacity they are currently exemplifying, BC will have little trouble reserving a spot in Denver this May.
The Eagles get one more chance to send a national message before the big dance, as they host Central Michigan and undefeated sleeper Illinois this upcoming weekend. Favorable results would put the Eagles at 6-2 for the season, a great position to be in heading into the final stretch. The maroon and gold are working hard to join the ranks of other Boston greats: the Celtics, Patriots, and Red Sox have all won championships in the past few years, and BC feels like it is finally their time to represent the city and grab a spot next to them at the top. The Eagles can only hope that the MCLA trophy makes its way from Michigan to Bean-town, getting caught up in the wind currents as lacrosse dominance returns to its pioneer region.
Follow the Eagles lacrosse program at http://www.bceagleslacrosse.com.