I’ve played in a lot of lacrosse games in my career and there are clearly some I’ve enjoyed more than others! For this weeks top five, I’ll give my top 5 lacrosse games that I’ve had the opportunity to play in.
Editor’s note: Read all of Kyle’s posts for Lax All Stars here
1. National Championship 2005
This one is probably pretty obvious, but playing in the National Championship back in 2005 in Philadelphia was my favorite lacrosse game that I’ve ever played in. From the pressure of having not having won a championship for 18 years, to the pressure of an undefeated season, I loved every minute of it. Being able to win in front of a record setting crowd and end our college career the right way was absolutely incredible, and will forever be my favorite lacrosse game that I’ve had the opportunity to play in.
2. MD vs. Hopkins 2004, 100th Anniversary Game
The atmosphere for this game at Hopkins under the light was absolutely ridiculous! Standing room only crowd, playing against our biggest rival in the 100th anniversary game was pretty special. From the preparation all week, to the all of the legends from both teams that came before us, it was a game I will never forget, and am extremely fortunate to have been playing in it.
3. USA vs. Canada 2006 (both games)
The first time we played Canada in the 2006 worlds was one of the best lacrosse games I’ve ever been apart of. From the talent level on the field, to the tension between the teams, to the fact that it was in the World Games, it was incredible! The first game in round robin play, it was tied up with 10 seconds left..and Jay Jabert scored with no time left on the clock to give us the W! The sense of pride that putting a USA jersey on is second to none, and that was a pretty damn cool way to win that game at the buzzer.
Clearly, everyone knows what happened in the championship game back in 2006, but that doesn’t change the fact that it was an honor to be playing in that game. The loss to Canada was is second on my list of worst losses (first being to UVA in the National Championship in 2003), but to be a part of that game and on the field with those types of players, it was definitely one of my favorite games to play in.
4. Hopkins vs. Navy 2004
Both teams absolutely hated each other, and we were playing at a sold out stadium over at the Naval Academy. From the hostile environment, to the heat, to the talent on the Navy squad, it was definitely a tough one to go into and get a W. We were down by a few in the 4th and me and Conor Ford scored back to back to send it into overtime.
One play from the second overtime I remember like it was yesterday…Ian Dingman (Navy attackmen) had the ball and did a huge loop around the goal to knock some time off the clock, then before he went to the goal, he looked over at the Navy Academy student section and gave them a bunch of head nods like he was about to end the thing! Our defense clearly saw that, got more fired up than they already were, made a stop and we went down to the other end and Conor Ford tucker his 4th G of the day in the bottom corner for the w in double overtime! We always had great games with Navy, and this definitely makes my top 5 of best games I’ve ever been apart of.
5. Hopkins vs. UVA, 2005 Semi’s
Playing in front of a crowd like the one at this game is always special, but the way this game went down was incredibly unpredictable. From the early lead we took, to the random storm in the middle of everything, to the goal Matt Ward scored with 12.4 seconds left in the game to give UVA the lead, the game was as unpredictable as they come!
For GP to win the draw (miss the initial scoop), for Jake Byrne to make the smart play and switch from right to left handed (if he shot right handed, would have hit defender and goalie had a solid angle) and bury one in the bottom corner, and for Benson Erwin, our D Middie and one of the leaders of the team to score the game winner, it was an absolutely crazy finish.
I’ve had a bunch other games that have been incredible to be a part of for sure. From Hop games, to to the MLL Championship game, to the MLL Semi’s, to my first All Star game in the MLL back in 2005, there have definitely been a bunch of special ones. What are some of your favorite games you’ve been apart of?
About the author: A Tewaaraton Trophy winner and MLL All-Star currently playing for the Denver Outlaws, Kyle Harrison is widely known as one of the best players to ever come out of Johns Hopkins University.
Check out all of Kyle’s Lax All Stars posts here.