Editor’s Note: We’re lucky to have Patrick Smith join LAS for a quick lesson on SoCal club ball. When you combine the home grown West Coast talent and the East Coast transplants, you get a really good quality level to the lacrosse. When you add in the weather, which is usually pretty sweet, it kind of starts to sound like lax paradise.
The Southern California Post Collegiate Men’s Lacrosse League (or SoCal) is in full swing and several teams are contending for four playoff spots in June. The league is made up of nine different clubs that each are comprised of players from various NCAA Division 1, 2, 3, MCLA, and other collegiate lacrosse backgrounds.
With the demise of the Los Angeles Riptide, most professional players not wishing to relocate or travel to play professional lacrosse have assimilated back into the league. SoCal players that do play professional lacrosse will typically play the majority of the games with their respective club before shipping off to MLL training camps in mid-April.
The Hollywood Men’s Lacrosse Club has seen a resurgence unlike any other team in the league. With a strong off-season recruiting plan, Boathouse Sports and Silverfin Lacrosse sponsorships, and a brand new web site, the team has attracted top talent. With victories over Beverly Hills and 40 Thieves, they are a strong contender for one of the two northern division playoff spots in June.
Former Whittier Poets attackman Russ Der commented, “There are no egos on this team. It’s just a great bunch of very solid players that are good guys. I love playing on this team for that reason.” Notable off-season additions to the squad include Alex Wharton, Duncan Swezey, and Taylor Claggett, who are all former stand outs at Notre Dame, Cushing Donelan, former goalie at Amherst, former Deleware standout attackman Brock Livingston, and defenseman Mike Bartol from Springfield College.
The key to success in this league is a dependable roster, conditioning, and numbers. On any given Sunday any team can emerge victorious because of variations in personnel. This season Hollywood tried to take that variable out of the equation by only adding dedicated guys that we can count on to make games on a regular basis. So far it’s working well.
Together with Southern California lacrosse stalwart Tarik Ergin and Pepperdine Alum, Charlie Black, we have assimilated a formidable roster of high caliber players this season. The team stays sharp in the off season by playing a year round schedule against teams in the Los Angeles region such as Beverly Hills Lacrosse Club, UCLA, USC, and Loyola Marymount University.
The team is set to square off against defending league champion Team Quiksilver out of San Diego on the 6th of June.
Patrick Smith is a US Naval Academy grad, Silverfin Lacrosse founder and Hollywood defenseman.