Gaels drop two against Ravens

Roadtrip to Ottawa opens season with a pair of losses

The men’s lacrosse team opened their season against the Carleton Ravens last weekend in a home-and-home series in Ottawa. The Gaels lost both games this weekend by scores of 10-4 and 13-4.

The regular season came quickly for the Gaels who had only just completed their try-outs and were able to fit two full practices in before facing off against Ottawa. The losses could be chalked-up to a young team that’s still meshing with one another on the field. Defenceman Ryan Zoehner said that although the results were unfortunate, the games were learning experiences.

“We’re a young team and we’re just starting to come together,” he said. “There’s only about two weeks of practice under our belt ... A lot of younger guys have stepped into some roles ... It’s definitely something to build on and there’s positives going forward, not just for this year but the future.”

Their games against Carleton revealed both strengths and weaknesses that the Gaels took into account to try turn their second game around.

“[In] the second game we definitely cracked down on some of our defensive weaknesses,” he said. “We worked hard in getting the correct matchups and improving our communication. For the future, we just need to continue improving more of that and getting everyone on the same page.”

Zoehner believes the men’s lacrosse team will make a push for the postseason.

“Our first goal would be to make the playoffs,” he said. “That all starts with a win on Saturday.”

The Gaels welcome a very different looking Trent team this weekend to Kingston. Preparing for their Saturday game, the Gaels could only look to improve upon their own strategy and skills.

“A lot of the older guys [at Trent] have left, a newer group has come in,” he said. “So we prepared by working on our offence, getting everyone on the same page [and] fixing some of the technical problems that hurt us last weekend.”

Midfielder Braden Hergott said that the team is still adjusting to their new teammates and the strategies that their first-year head coach has implemented.

“Most important thing about the weekend was that our offence generally let us down,” he said. “[It’s] unfortunate because our offence is built with some of the older guys on the team. Scoring a couple goals would have helped us. It would have cut the games a little closer.”

The Gaels are excited for their home opener and are hoping to bring a win to Kingston.

“Hopefully we can get a good crowd coming out,” he said. “They lost a couple key players from last year so hopefully we’ll be able to capitalize on that and get a win under our belt.”

Head coach Don Tough explained that the losses let the Gaels see how the young team would react in a game situation.

“Carleton is a gifted team,” he told the Journal via e-mail. “The two games allowed us to progress defensively and showed where we needed to improve offensively.”

Tough showed more restraint than Zoehner in his predictions for the team but he said he knows the Gaels will be able to compete.

“Our expectations for this season are to improve on last year’s 2-8 season,” he said. “Our goal is to get a win or two under our belt, developed during the midseason and end the season with a couple more wins ... The players have the potential to do well.”

The Gaels will face off against the Trent Excalibur this Saturday at Tindall Field. Game time is at noon.

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