The Lords’ lacrosse season ended at Hiram College on Saturday, despite the fact that the Lords produced their greatest winning margin of the decade, defeating the Hiram Terriers 36-9. Coming off their worst loss in three years against the Denison University Big Red on Wednesday, which officially eliminated the Lords from North Coast Athletic Conference (NCAC) playoff contention, the Lords bounced back to finish their season 6-7 and 4-4 in NCAC play.
The Lords started fast, taking the 7-0 lead just 10 minutes in. The Lords did not give up a shot until 4:05 remained in the first quarter, and ended up outshooting the Terriers 77-19. The game was put out of reach relatively quickly: The Lords ended up scoring more goals after 20 minutes than Hiram would for the remainder of the game.
Seniors Alex Lopez and Robert Jacobs led the Lords in their final games with nine and six goals respectively. Starting goaltender Gabe Avis ’17 played the first half, giving up two goals on three shots, and then returned with three minutes left in the game to cap off his first and final year as a starter.
“It was nice to contribute a little in my final season, and I’m so proud of my defense as they continued to get better each day and each game,” Avis said. “The season had a lot of ups and downs but I am happy to have spent it with my closest friends.”
This season, Lords lacrosse fell short of their goals and their standing in 2016, when they finished fourth in the NCAC and qualified for the NCAC tournament. The season could have ended differently, as close losses to Ohio Wesleyan University and The College of Wooster this month hindered the Lords’ record and left them with the unlikely task of having to upset Wittenberg University and Denison University to salvage their season.
The season was not without individual accolade. Avis finished first in save percentage during the regular season among NCAC goaltenders, stopping 54.9 percent of the shots he faced in 518 minutes this season. Jacobs finished second in the points among NCAC field players with 70 points, second in assists with 35 and fifth in goals with 35. Face-off specialist Will Swain ’19 finished second in face-offs, winning 112 of the 190 he took.
The Lords’ future looks bright as the team plans to learn from their mistakes for next season. The team has been really improving, “specifically regarding our training, conditioning, and practice planning,” Avis said.w
Now that the Lords are finished for the season, the team must say goodbye to seniors Noah Gurzenski, Andrew Weinert, Daniel Maffezzoli, Avis, Jacobs and Lopez. But the crop of rising seniors, juniors and sophomores is ready to step up.
“Next year’s team will be a force to be reckoned with,” Avis said.