Lacrosse, rugby teams gear up for season
April 7, 2011
With the snow slowly melting and the smells of spring in the air, the UW-River Falls men’s lacrosse and rugby teams take center stage in the club sports scene on campus.
Men’s Lacrosse President Ryan Jordan said that the team is looking good this year. He added that with the tight schedules of each player, practices could sometimes present scheduling conflicts.
“A large strength of this team is our players commitment to the sport and their drive to improve their skills,” Jordan said.
Jordan said that the lacrosse season begins in the fall, runs through the winter, and sees league games pick up in the spring.
So what does a Falcon lacrosse player do in terms of practice and preparation?
“Our practices are a consistent two hours,” Jordan said. “Whether we are practicing from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. or 11 p.m. to 1 a.m. our general goal remains the same.”
Jordan said that practices follow a particular order of activities, all designed to ultimately prepare the team for game situations.
“We begin with warm-ups and practice drills,” Jordan said. “After that we move into specific skills that are determined before practice. By the last half of practice there are half-court scrimmages designed to
implement skills that we worked on that day.”
According to research conducted by ESPN, lacrosse has steadily been increasing in involvement over the past five years. Experts said that if current trends continue, lacrosse will take over baseball as the most widely practiced spring sport among youth in America.
Jordan said that recruiting for the lacrosse team relies heavily upon networking and giving players an experience to remember.
“In the past, we have relied on word of mouth for recruitment,” Jordan said. “We also have a booth at the involvement fair each year which helps a lot.”
Above all else, Jordan said that he feels lacrosse is more than a game.
“It is a great opportunity to meet new friends, get some exercise, and have fun while doing it,” Jordan said.
The team has yet to play a league- sanctioned game due to the snow. Jordan said he hopes changes soon.
The other large club sport team taking the field this spring is the rugby team.
Men’s Rugby President Chris Konieczka said that the rugby team operates much like any other athletic team on campus would.
“School, rugby, sleep, repeat,” Konieczka said chuckling to himself. “It’s really not much different from any other athlete’s day.”
Konieczka said that practices are focused around developing the skills necessary to compete at a high level.
“Our practices involve a lot of teamwork skill and ball control,” Konieczka said. “These are two of the key components to being a great rugby team.”
Last year’s squad saw a disappointing end to an otherwise successful season, with the Falcons dropping the championship game of the All Saints tournament in St. Cloud, Minn.
“We lost in the championship last year by two points,” Konieczka said. “This year the story will end differently.”
Konieczka added that with the missed deadline for school funding next season, the team will be exploring sponsorship options from local businesses as well as doing various fundraising events.
To learn more about the lacrosse and rugby teams, as well as other clubs on campus, visit the clubs page located on the UWRF website.