BY STEVEN SOUSA // Feb. 28, 2017 //
The Curry men’s lacrosse team looks to change the tides in the Commonwealth Coast Conference after their 10-7 overall record landed them 7th in the conference last year.
Fourth-year head coach Tim Murphy set the team’s expectations very clearly; “We do not expect to end up in 7th place; we want to be up around that [top four] area.”
That elusive top-four finish would also mean hosting a playoff game which is “going to be a huge step for us a program,” added coach Murphy.
Two players that will be pivotal to the Colonels’ success will be junior Matt Serra and sophomore MJ Urbano. Serra led the team in goals and finished 11th in the conference with 36 while Urbano finished close behind with 26, landing him 20th in the league.
Murphy certainly expects a similar type of production from the duo, but also wants to see everyone else get involved on offense in order to not rely on only a couple of guys.
A big change from last year to this year is experience; the 2016 squad had only five seniors which forced a lot of underclassmen to get substantial playing time. Despite that being a weakness last year, Murphy hopes it will turn into a strength this year as those younger players hopefully benefitted from the involvement.
One of those underclassmen seeing a lot of the action was midfielder Wade Prajer. He registered 21 points as a freshman and has now been voted by his teammates as a captain.
“First time for any team that I’ve coached, [the team] voted a sophomore in Wade Prajer as a captain,” said Murphy. “It speaks to his work ethic and the time and effort he puts into his craft.”
Joining him will be senior members of the team in goaltender Shane O’Brien and attackman Dominick Marcella. All three will be crucial components of the team to help reverse the trend of last season.
Despite finishing above .500 overall, the Colonels were a lackluster 2-6 in one of the best conferences in the northeast.
Murphy has added a little bit of variety in this years’ schedule, with non-conference opponents mixed into their conference schedule. The thought is to be able to take a step back and better adjust to the conference teams with the more time in between games.
At the end of the day his players have to go out and play the game from whistle to whistle and coach Murphy seems to like what he’s got; “I think we are little bit more stout across the board in terms of our roster than we have been in years past,” noted Murphy.
He believes that versatility combined with their experience will allow the Colonels to win the closer games that did not go their way last year.
One example of that is their season opener at Umass Dartmouth where Curry came back from a 6-2 deficit after the first quarter and came out with a 13-12 win.
The opportunity to continue the success comes tomorrow afternoon right here at the Walter M. Katz field with the opening faceoff scheduled for 3:30 p.m. against Husson University.