On February 19, FLC LAX kicked off the 2011 season with scrimmages against CSU-Pueblo and UNM in Albuquerque. After meeting in the early morning with snow flurries at FLC, the team drove to Albuquerque where the weather was sunny and mild. The players were excited to get outside on a field and enjoy some competition.
CSU-Pueblo is fielding a lacrosse team for the first time this year, so doesn’t have the experience or depth of most other teams. FLC jumped out to a quick 4-0 lead a halftime with 2 goals by Drew Larson, and goals by Josh deGuzman, and Ethan Fisher. Pueblo founds it’s rhythm in the third quarter and tallied 4 goals to FLC’s one by Drew Larson, to make the score 5-4 going into the fourth quarter. Fortunately, FLC picked up the pace in the fourth quarter scoring 3 more goals by Drew Larson, Kevin Harkey, and Elsworth McCormack to win the game 8-4.
After a short break, FLC faceoffed against a solid University of New Mexico team. UNM has joined the RMLC this year as a Division 1 team. Both teams traded goals and played solid lacrosse with FLC scoring 4 times in the first half with goals from Drew Larson (2), Kevin Harkey, and Elsworth McCormack, and UNM scoring 3. Kevin Harkey scored again in the third quarter putting FLC up 5-3. The fourth quarter was dominated by UNM as the FLC offense went flat and the FLC defense didn’t coordinate well, although goalie Sean Claussen made some amazing 1 on 1 saves. The Lobos scored twice putting the game into overtime. Both teams had several scoring opportunities in the first overtime but failed to find the net. With only 10 seconds left in the second overtime, freshman Elsworth McCormack scooped up a loose ball on a broken UNM clear, then passed to Aaron Blue who quick sticked the ball past the Lobo tender with 4 seconds remaining to secure the FLC win.
These scrimmages don’t count towards the Hawk’s record, but were a great way to see how the 2011 team plays. With Jon Bock, being the only returning senior, the Skyhawks will be a younger team than last years. The close defense of Jon Bock, Mike Kelly, Sumner Randle, and John Pekarske look to be the strongest part of the FLC team. After missing most of last year with a broken arm, goalie Sean Claussen looks awesome.
Drew Larson will be a scoring and defensive threat in Midfield. Cullen Bilgrav shows strengths on faceoffs and will dominate on ground balls. Josh deGuzman, Aaron Blue, and Ross Woods will add experience and strong skills to the midfield.
Kevin Harkey will lead an Attack unit of Elsworth McCormack,and Ethan Fisher with supplemental attack play by both Ross Woods and Aaron Blue.
Adding depth to the team are new players Chris Shoptaugh, Vaughn Hayes, Jared Kane, and Michael Chase.
The team leaves on March 4 for a 4 game trip to challenge Biola, Long Beach, Fullerton, and UC San Diego in California.