Inexperienced lacrosse team struggles to overcome loss of leading scorer

After losing lead scorer Donald Hutchinson to the University of Colorado, Boulder, the lacrosse team is struggling to regroup.

The team lost 4-14 in its first match, an away game with Justin-Siena High School in Napa, on Feb. 25.

At the half, the Cavs were down only 4-6. However, in the second half Dominic Stevens, the team’s only experienced short-stick middie, fouled out.

“(Then) the game got away from us,” coach Brooke Wells said.

Since January,  junior Skovran Cunningham, the new captain, has trained after school, well before official practices were scheduled.

“I spent a lot of time shooting in order to practice my outside finishing (shots from the perimeter of the goal),” Cunningham said.

Cunningham also attended an invitational college recruiting tournament in Maryland last November, where players worked with college lacrosse coaches and some professional players.

“We would do some quick warmups and drills, and then it was all games,” said Cunningham. “During the tournament I learned a lot about making plays without the ball and teamwork.

“Before we used to just be able to pass to Donald and watch him run downfield and score. Now we have to play as more of a team.”

Several Division III schools contacted Cunningham shortly after the tournament, but he said he is not interested in attending them.

Juniors Chris Liston and Ethan Ham also prepared for the season by lifting weights.

Wells is still planning on making some changes to cope with the loss of Hutchinson.

“With Hutchinson we could score from the top of the field,” Wells said.

“But this year we’re going to have to attack from the back (the part of the field that’s behind the goal) with Cunningham, which puts a lot of responsibility on other players to get the ball down the field.”

The Cavs kept all of their starting defense and goalie Troy Hoddick.

The team remains independent, as the only league they could join is located in the Bay Area.

“We’re kind of like Notre Dame,” Wells said. “Teams just play us for the fun and publicity.”


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