Welcome to Forum Friday! Everyday there are great conversations taking place in the LAS Community. If you haven’t signed up yet, make sure you do! And while you’re at it, you might as well watch this silly video update we created too. We hope it provides you with an easy way to connect with other lacrosse fans all over the world.
This week we are debuting a new type of Forum Friday: Community Content. What does that mean? Rather than posting a question that has been asked in the LAS Community, we’re going to be featuring select user-submitted content. Most Forum Friday’s will have the old format, but when LAS members submit content in the Community that catches our attention, we will share it with all of LAS Nation. So if you have something awesome that you think should be shared with the world, make sure to post it in the LAS Community!
For our first ever Community Content post, we have a video submitted by socolax2, aka Will Wezenter II. Will is the Assistant Coach at Southern Connecticut State University and the Vice President of the MCLA’s Pioneer Collegiate Lacrosse League (PCLL). This video is special because it isn’t of Will’s team – in fact, it’s of a conference opponent!
We had a chance to ask Coach Wezenter about the video, his conference, and the LAS Community.
The team in the video is Central Connecticut, but you coach at conference rival Southern Connecticut. What made you post the link to the video?
I posted the video for two reasons. First, I like to get the teams in the PCLL more exposure, and despite being conference rivals, I have a pretty good relationship with CCSU (and New Haven, who is much more of a rival given they are down the street from us).
How long have you been Vice President of the PCLL, and what growth have you seen in your conference and in MCLA Division II overall over the past few years?
I was elected VP of the PCLL this past month, Oct. 2013. I have been involved in the PCLL since Sept. 2009, as a player, and coach, in some capacity since then. When I formed the SCSU team, I immediately took the team to the PCLL meeting with hopes to join. Overall I have witnessed a lot of growth, some of which I think I have been a part of. Our team has gone from a crop of players who were a mixed bag, players who never played before, players who quit during youth, transfers from NCAA, from all talent levels, to now having a team almost entirely of players who each have played for at least 4 years.
Also, I noticed when I first got involved, the PCLL DII was not considered a strong conference. I watched Briarcliffe, Coast Guard, Stonehill, SCSU, CCSU, and other PCLL teams branch out over the last 3 years to really compete in OOC games and raise the bar of the conference overall. Last season we had 2 DII teams in the national tournament for the first time, which is a huge step in the direction of being recognized on a national level.
Connecticut has a lot of MCLA teams (UConn, Central, Southern, and New Haven). What is so appealing about playing in the Constitution State and what would you tell an interested player about playing at one of these schools?
Connecticut lacrosse is its own dynamic for sure. In addition to the MCLA teams you listed in Connecticut, there is also the Coast Guard Academy, who leaves us next year, and University of Bridgeport is looking to organize a team as well. Also there is Men’s NCAA D1 Yale, Sacred Heart, Hartford, Quinnipiac, Fairfield, D2 Post University, D3 Albertus Magnus, Conn College, WCSU, ECSU, Mitchell, Trinity, and Wesleyan. That is a lot of colleges with lacrosse teams (and doesn’t account for the NCAA schools with clubs) especially for such a small state.
The style of play I have noticed is different from other states. Long Island lacrosse is very disciplined, and very structured. Maryland is a very slow it down, methodical game. Lacrosse from the south and west have outstanding athletes and both groups play a more physical game. In CT, I have noticed, our teams (in HS and in College) play more fast paced with an emphasis on transition, stick skills, and not as much settled offense.
The appeal out here is that, Connecticut is a lacrosse hotbed, smack dab next to Long Island, another hotbed. Kids from this area don’t have to go far to be noticed or to play at any level of college lacrosse (NCAA D1, D2, D3, MCLA D1, D2, or NCLL). Why would a CT player pay an absurd amount of money to go to a private school on the other side of the country when they can go to one of the many state school options (be it NCAA or MCLA) and still have a chance to play college lacrosse at a high level? UConn, CCSU and SCSU, the majority of the schools rosters is composed of Connecticut players. On the other side of this, players from out of state are not taking advantage of the opportunities to play college lax here in Connecticut.
How can an interested player get more information about your team and the team featured in the video?
Players interested in getting more information on CCSU can email the address posted within the video link, or can visit their MCLA page.
What’s your favorite part of the LAS Community Forum?
My favorite part of the LAS Community Forum is that I have a place to discuss MCLA DII topics with a relative amount of activity. It is a bit slow now but during the Spring the discussions really heat up.
You’re gong to have check out the post in the Community to see the video for yourself. While you’re there, don’t forget to interact with the rest of the LAS Community by commenting on posts, striking up a new conversation, or posting your own awesome content. Who knows, maybe you’ll be featured in the next Community Content!