Monthly Archives: February 2009

Southern California Lacrosse: 2009 Knights Challenge JV Boys Lacrosse Tournament Hosted By Foothill High School On Feb. 21 & 22 (Video)

Contributed by El Toro High School JV Lacrosse.

Cal Women’s Lacrosse Loses To #6 Penn 10-2 After Playing Strong 1st Half

“We had a pretty good first half,” Cal head coach Theresa Sherry said. “We had some poor attacking

Cal's Alex Tickner scored in the 59th minute against Penn on Friday.

Cal's Alex Tickner scored in the 59th minute against Penn on Friday.

possessions, and in the second half we still had trouble converting. The score doesn’t look like it, but our defense did okay. Penn was just down there too much. They were just able to pick away and open up that score a little bit. Our kids did play hard. In the future, we’re hoping to put up 60 minutes of good defense, good attack and good midfield play.”

California lost to No. 6 Penn, 10-2, on Friday at Franklin Field. The Golden Bears’ record fell to 2-3 after the nonconference match, with all three losses to 2008 NCAA semifinalists. Penn, the 2008 NCAA runner-up, improved it record to 2-0. Senior Elizabeth “T” Jahp and junior Alex Tickner scored Cal’s goals.

Cal has lost two straight, including an 18-2 setback against then-No. 3 Syracuse on Feb. 22 in Berkeley.

Emma Spiro led all scorers with three points from three goals for the Quakers, who outshot the Bears, 30-9.

Senior Morgan Dyson got the start in Cal’s goal, making six saves. Sophomore Allie Shropshire made six saves in relief of Dyson, who eventually returned and played 43 minutes and 23 seconds in today’s game.

Emily Szelest made six saves in a complete game for Penn.

Cal opened the game started strong and held possession for much of the first 10 minutes, but the Bears couldn’t capitalize with an early goal. Freshman Vail Horn took the only shot for either team in the first 13:23 of the game, with Szelest saving Horn’s shot. At 13:24, Penn’s Erin Brennan scored the game’s first goal.


#2 Virginia Men’s Lacrosse Defeats #1 Syracuse 13-12

virginialacrosseSecond-ranked Virginia scored six third quarter goals to break a halftime tie and withstood a furious fourth quarter rally by top-ranked Syracuse to defeat the Orange 13-12 before a crowd of 16,565 at the Carrier Dome.

Virginia moves to 5-0 this season and becomes the first team to ever win three consecutive games at the Dome; the Cavaliers also won in 2003 and 2005.

Sophomore midfielder Shamel Bratton scored a career-high four goals to lead Virginia. Attackmen Garrett Billings and Danny Glading each scored three times. The trio combined to score all six Virginia goals in the third quarter.

Billings and John Haldy scored a minute apart to push Virginia’s lead to 13-8 with 7:32 remaining. Syracuse stormed back with the game’s final four goals, including two by Kenny Nims to pull within one with 1:18 remaining.

The Orange claimed the faceoff following Tim Desko’s goal with 1:18 to play. Cavalier defenseman Matt Kelly knocked the ball away from Nims in the final minute and midfielder Max Pomper picked up the loose ball for Virginia. Pomper carried the ball into Virginia’s offensive zone and the Cavaliers called timeout with 15 seconds to play. On the restart, Syracuse was unable to regain possession as time ran out.

Virginia returns to action Tuesday at VMI in Lexington, Va. The game is scheduled to faceoff at 3:30 pm.

Lacrosse Injury Prevention: High School Students Receive Sports Medicine And Injury Prevention Training At Seattle Public Schools Providing Additional Assistance To Athletic Trainers

Ballard High student Tamsyn Palmesano helps injured lacrosse player Amanda Bryan on Thursday. A sports medicine class gives Palmesano real-world training.

Ballard High student Tamsyn Palmesano helps injured lacrosse player Amanda Bryan on Thursday. A sports medicine class gives Palmesano real-world training.

The lacrosse player who rushed into the athletic trainer’s room Thursday afternoon at Ballard High School was a little panicked: She had just under five minutes to get her sore wrist taped up and get out onto the field.

With certified athletic trainer Loka Murphy already occupied, junior Tamsyn Palmesano calmly stepped in, taped up the girl’s wrist and sent her on her way with a minute to spare.

Ballard’s sports medicine program and similar ones at Chief Sealth and West Seattle high schools are still in the early stages, but district officials hope to build a two-year track that will prepare students for sports medicine careers by studying subjects such as anatomy, medical terminology and injury prevention.

A year ago, Palmesano wouldn’t have been as confident in her ability to help treat the daily parade of students who come by looking for relief from minor injuries, aches and pains. But this is her third semester as a student in Murphy’s sports medicine classes, and she’s already received her Medic First Aid and CPR certification.
“Being in the training room is different than being in the classroom,” she said.

“You have to get the taping jobs right, get your terminology down … it’s really hands-on. But Loka’s always there to help you out if you need it.”

Ballard’s sports medicine program and similar ones at Chief Sealth and West Seattle high schools are still in the early stages, but district officials hope to build a two-year track that will prepare students for sports medicine careers by studying subjects such as anatomy, medical terminology and injury prevention.

Students can earn both high school and college credit for the courses, as well as pick up professional certifications and training in first aid, CPR and HIV/AIDS prevention.

Real-world experiences like Palmesano is getting are also an important part of the curriculum, said Roxanne Trees, a Seattle Public Schools career and technical education specialist who is helping develop the district’s sports medicine program.

“Teaching students to apply their knowledge as early as possible is going to help them meet these (challenges) that are ahead of them,” she said. “And students want more applied learning. … We link it to students’ futures so that it’s real for them, and I think they really do learn better.”

At Ballard, Murphy gives students a taste of what an athletic trainer’s job is like by inviting them to shadow him as he works at school sporting events. He also allows students in his advanced classes to help fellow students who come in to have their sore elbows iced, ankles wrapped or calves massaged in the school’s athletic training room after school.

“When they come in, I put them to work,” he jokes.

For student-athletes who have taken Murphy’s classes, the experience is particularly valuable. Senior Michael Tran, who runs for the track and cross-country teams, boosted his training regimen this year and had shin splints.

“Before Loka’s class, I didn’t know what to do. I just ran through it,” he said. Now, he said, he understands overtraining can exacerbate his injuries, and (reluctantly) he takes time off to rest and heal.

Seattle Children’s hospital, which contracts with Seattle Public Schools to provide part-time athletic trainers at the district’s high schools, has helped pay some of the startup costs, and a representative sits on the advisory board that oversees the district’s sports medicine programs.

The schools get about $1,500 a year for supplies, which at Ballard is supplemented by grants from the school’s foundation.

Still, with the district facing a projected budget shortfall next year, Murphy is kicking around the idea of organizing a 5K fundraising run in Ballard in May to help sustain the program. He grows animated when talking about the race, and about his ideas for next year’s classes.

Eventually, he hopes Seattle’s sports medicine program will be as well respected as those at other schools in the state, such as South Kitsap High.

But for now, Murphy said, “it’s just fun watching it grow.”




Best Of Lacrosse (Video): Duke Men’s Lacrosse Vs. Harvard On Feb. 22, 2009

#1 Syracuse Men’s Lacrosse To Face #2 Virginia Friday Night And Is “As Good As It Gets For Lacrosse Fans”; Syracuse Defense Is One Of The Keys To The Matchup


Friday night’s match up between Syracuse and Virginia at the Carrier Dome is as good as it gets for lacrosse fans, and the participants. “For real lacrosse people, this is the game they want to be part of,” said Virginia coach Dom Starsia. “It is the game circled on the schedule above all others.”

The Orange men’s lacrosse team has played the Cavaliers 21 times in a 15-year span. SU leads the series 11-10.

syracusemenslacrossedefense“It’s hard work,” said senior short-stick defensive midfielder Spencer Van Schaack, a team captain. “Coach Rogers says it all the time. Defense is hard work. You’ve just got to suck it up and do it, just like on the basketball court. Lacrosse and basketball defensively are pretty similar.”

The Orange lacrosse team has held opponents to fewer than 10 goals in 15 of its last 20 games. Last season, the defense allowed just 7.6 goals per game, an improvement of about four goals per game over the previous season. Assistant coach Lelan Rogers has a lot to do with the Orange’s improvement on ‘D.’

Senior short-stick defensive midfielder Spencer Van Schaack offers some insight into Rogers’ philosophy. “It’s hard work. Coach Rogers says it all the time. Defense is hard work. You’ve just got to suck it up and do it,” Van Schaack said.

Rogers’ defense will be put to the test tonight when No. 1 Syracuse faces longtime rival, No. 2 Virginia at the Carrier Dome. “We’re going to find out what we’re made of this week, that’s for sure,” Rogers said.

Lelan Rogers began playing pickup basketball as a means of getting some lunchtime exercise while he was coaching lacrosse and football at Division III Ohio Wesleyan. What he learned on the court nearly two decades ago has helped the offensive-minded Syracuse University men’s lacrosse team develop a stout defensive backbone.

With Rogers serving as defensive coordinator last season, the Orange allowed only 7.6 goals per game, an improvement of roughly four goals per game over the previous season.

It was the defense’s most stingy effort in 38 years, worthy of a No. 14 national ranking. There were several reasons behind the accomplishment, among them a veteran returning unit, a faceoff specialist who gave the SU offense the ball two times for every three draws he took, and an offense so potent it often made foes force their own scoring chances in an effort to keep up.

The biggest, though, was the lesson Rogers, a former national wrestling champion at St. Lawrence and team captain at SU, learned on the hardwood.

“When youget older you don’t wrestle,” Rogers said Wednesday as he helped prepare the No. 1 Orange for No. 2 Virginia at 7 p.m. today in the Carrier Dome. “I’m at Ohio Wesleyan, and I’m not wrestling at noontime with the faculty and staff. We’re playing basketball. Obviously, I was not an outside shooter in basketball, not real offensive, so you learn to play defense.

“You take pride on that side of the ball, and that’s probably where I became a defensive-minded coach. You have to know your role and understand your role. I knew I wasn’t a great offensive basketball player, so you gravitate to what you do well. I’m sure I had more than my share of fouls.”

Rogers has taken those ingredients – pride, hard work and understanding your role – molded them into a simple philosophy and instilled it into SU’s defense. He and his players agree that the team’s emergence as a defensive force is nothing more than that.

“It’s hard work,” said senior short-stick defensive midfielder Spencer Van Schaack, a team captain. “Coach Rogers says it all the time. Defense is hard work. You’ve just got to suck it up and do it, just like on the basketball court. Lacrosse and basketball defensively are pretty similar.”

“We justgot back to basic fundamentals,” junior close defender Matt Tierney said. “Just a lot of talk, a lot of communication and just backing up each other.”

The results have been impressive. The Orange has held foes to fewer than 10 goals in 15 of its last 20 games, remarkable considering the tempo its offense plays and the chances it is sometimes willing to take in order to create scoring opportunities, leaving the defense vulnerable.

“The thing I really see is they don’t give you anything,” Army coach Joe Alberici said a few days before SU held his offense down in a 17-6 victory.

“You have to earn it. They are so athletic. They have a constant, and that is defensive effort and defensive enthusiasm. Some days the offense isn’t as good as other days. That’s just the way it is in this sport. Some years that may have hurt them, but now with that defensive effort and enthusiasm and being the athletes they are, that is no longer an issue.”

“The difference with what they’re doing defensively is noticeable,” Virginia coach Dom Starsia said. “Simplified is the word you hear most often to describe it. They simplified what they’re doing back there. It is now a very efficient defense. To say it is not is to kid yourself. It may be vulnerable at times, but for who they are and who they want to be, it is very solid.”

So far, it continues to be solid even though veteran close defenders Evan Brady and Kyle Guadagnolo and short-stick D-middies John Carrozza and Steve Babbles departed following last season’s title run. Two games into the season the defense is allowing only 4.5 goals per contest.

Lacrosse Injuries: ACL Tears Occuring In Younger Athletes As Lacrosse And Other Sports Become Year-Round


Each year more than 300,000 Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) tears occur in the United States.acltears According to information released today at the 2009 Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS), ACL tears are being seen in younger patients as an increasing number of children and adolescents participate in year-round sports.

“What’s happening is that usually by about age 12, children choose the sport in which they are determined to excel and then participate in that sport year round,” explains Darren L. Johnson, MD, orthopaedic surgeon and director of sports medicine at the University of Kentucky School of Medicine. “Participating without taking time off, playing on multiple teams at one time and at higher competition levels, makes young athletes more susceptible to ACL tears at a younger age.”

Dr. Johnson says ACL injuries are common among athletes who play:





The injury is almost twice as common in female athletes compared to males, although the reasons why are still not entirely clear.

When an ACL tears or ruptures, it is a severe injury to the knee. “The real story is that only about 60 to 70 percent of athletes make it back to the same level of playing that they had before,” said Dr. Johnson.

In order to improve those statistics, orthopaedic surgeons are trying to more accurately customize surgery to each individual patient. “We are trying to do a better job at recreating a person’s unique anatomy,” noted Dr. Johnson, “and are actually trying to recreate the ACL that the patient had prior to the injury.”

Most often surgery is necessary to replace the ACL. It is important that athletes give their legs proper time to heal before returning to the sport in which they injured their knee. “This is a year-long recovery, but many young athletes do not understand this,” explains

Dr. Johnson. He often tells his patients to consider golfer Tiger Woods as an example.

Woods injured his ACL and has not returned to the game of golf since June 2008. “The reason you cannot return to playing after just a few months is because you do not have the strength back in your leg and the repaired ligament is not strong enough,” said Dr. Johnson. “Coming back too early is a real problem and puts the athlete at a higher risk for re-injury.”

Dr. Johnson says young athletes need to understand this fact in order to avoid further problems down the road. “Having two ACLs replaced by the time athletes are in high school is not uncommon,” noted Dr. Johnson, “but once that happens, it is very unlikely their knees will ever be normal.”



This topic and other sports injuries will be the focus of a Media Briefing entitled: “Mastering the ACL and Other Sports Injuries,” on Wednesday, February 25, in the Sands Expo Center, Venetian Hotel, Level One, Room 904 at 10:45am. Panelists include: Moderator: Darren L. Johnson, MD, James Andrews, MD, Freddie Fu, MD and Matt Matava, MD.


California High School Lacrosse: State Budget Deficit To Force Saddleback Valley Unified School District To Eliminate Funding For High School Lacrosse; El Toro, Mission Viejo And Laguna Hills High School Lacrosse Among Programs To Be Impacted

missionviejolacrosseThe Saddleback Valley Unified School District will need to cut $10 million from next year’s budget and about 134 jobs – including 33 classroom teachers – in response to the state budget signed Friday.
At a school board meeting Tuesday, district officials outlined a cost-cutting plan that includes canceling the college-level International Baccalaureate program at two of the district’s four high schools, scaling back the popular class-size reduction program in the primary grades, and making bus transit available only in areas with a “high need.”
Also under the plan, funding for high school lacrosse and roller hockey would be wiped out completely, as would all high school assistant sports coaches and the last remaining certificated librarians in high schools.





University Of Denver Men’s Lacrosse To Host “Face-Off Classic” With Towson, Air Force, And Sacred Heart Lacrosse Competing

denvermenslacrosse2The No. 16 University of Denver men’s lacrosse team (1-1, 0-0 GWLL) will open its 2009 home schedule when it hosts the 8th Annual Harrow Face-Off Classic this weekend at Peter Barton Lacrosse Stadium.

Denver will face Sacred Heart on Sat., Feb. 28 at 1:30 p.m. and Towson on Sun., Mar. 1 at 1:30 p.m.

Also competing in the Face-Off Classic will be Air Force, which is slated to play Towson on Sat. at 11 a.m. and Sacred Heart on Sun. at 11 a.m.


Sacred Heart looks to rebound after a disappointing 0-2 start to its season. The Pioneers opened their season by dropping a 15-6 decision at No. 20 UMass, and followed that up with a 22-8 loss against Bryant University. For the season, Sacred Heart has taken 31 shots on goal, while allowing its opponents 62.

The Pioneers have won 40.4% of their face-offs on the season, scored on 1-10 man-up opportunities and successfully killed off 4-10 of their opponent’s man-up chances. Timmy Katz leads Sacred Heart in scoring this season with 5 goals and 2 assists for 7 points. Zach Smith leads the team in ground balls with 15. Tom Trgo has gotten both of the starts in net so far for the Pioneers. Smith has played 60:00, allowing 15 goals and compiling a .483 save percentage. Sacred Heart returns nine of its top-10 scorers from a team that finished 7-5 in 2008.

The Tigers head west for a pair of games after losing their season opener at No. 18 Loyola, 11-8. In that contest, Towson bounced back after spotting Loyola an early 4-0 lead, but was never able to completely recover from its initial deficit. Sean Maguire led the Tigers with 2 goals, while both Bill McCutcheon and Tim Stratton posted a goal and 2 assists. Mitchell Rosensweig scooped up a game-high 8 ground balls for the Tigers. Towson started Rob Wheeler at goalkeeper, and he managed to make 14 saves in the losing effort. In 2008, Towson compiled a 5-9 record. 28 out of 44 letterwinners and three of 10 starters return from that team.


Last Saturday, Denver won a 10-9 squeaker over No. 20 Albany in a game played in the Empire State’s capitol city. Junior Charley Dickenson (Dallas, Texas) led the Pioneers with 3 goals and 2 assists, including the eventual game-winner with 6:32 remaining in the fourth period. Senior Joey Murray (Denver, Colo.) chipped in with 3 goals for Denver while freshman Alex Gajic (Burnaby, British Columbia) scored twice. In net, junior goalie Peter Lowell (Freeport, Maine) came up big for DU, making 13 saves on 22 shots on goal.


The Pioneers will host defending GWLL champion Notre Dame at Invesco Field at Mile High on April 11, 2009, at 1:30 p.m. When the two teams met last season, Denver prevailed 9-8 in a game played in Chicago. The Fighting Irish are currently ranked eight in the country in the USILA Coaches’ Poll. Last season, Notre Dame defeated Colgate 8-7 in the first round of the NCAA tournament before losing to eventual national champion Syracuse in an 11-9 squeaker in the quarterfinal round.


So far this season, the Pioneers have converted on 3-4 man-up opportunities, while holding their opponents to 3-7 with the man-advantage. Denver has placed 62.1% of its shots on goal and 29.3% of them have resulted in goals, while 74.6% of its opponent’s shots have been on target and 40.8% have produced scores. The Pioneers have won 47.1% of their face-offs and been successful on 74.4% of clears. DU has scooped up 49 ground balls versus 71 for its opponents, and has committed 28 turnovers while benefiting from 26 by its opponents. Joey Murray leads the Pioneers in scoring with 6 goals and 1 assist, and Charley Dickenson is not far behind with 4 goals and 2 assists. Peter Lowell has logged 67:39 in net for the Pioneers, and has compiled team leading statistics in goals against average (10.64) and save percentage (.538). Austin Konkel has also played 39:17 at goalkeeper, allowing 11 goals and making saves on 47.6% of the shots he has faced. Ben Wahler has taken 37 of 51 face-offs so far for the Pioneers, winning 17 and losing 20.



Live Stats, results and recaps from the each game during the Classic can be found by clicking the Harrow Face-Off Classic logo on the men’s lacrosse page of



UC Santa Barbara Women’s Lacrosse Defeats #6 UCLA 9-8 In Late Comeback

“We take pride in playing a tough schedule,” Ramsey said. “There are teams ranked ahead of us ucsantabarbarawomenslacrosseright now that asked me to schedule them for at least two easy games at the Shootout. Their coach did not want more than two tough opponents. We could be undefeated right now since I control the schedule. I’d rather do it this way and the team takes pride in not slacking off.”

Last Friday the #5 UCSB women’s club lacrosse team took a trip down to UCLA to square off with the #6 Bruins. For most of the game, the Gauchos trailed UCLA, and with 20 minutes left to play, UCSB was down 8-5 and it wasn’t looking good.

“[The feeling that we had was] dismay,” Head Coach Paul Ramsey said. “We were thoroughly out-played by UCLA for the first 40 minutes of the game.”

The Gauchos, however, were not dead yet. UCSB began to show signs of life when sophomore attacker Ashley Antoon-Algieri scored with about 18 minutes left to bring the score to 8-6. About eight minutes later, senior midfielder Katie Moran scored to make it 8-7. Then, with almost nine minutes left and new life in sight, freshman midfielder Maegan Cruse fired a shot at the UCLA goal and tied the score 8-8.

“We knew we had the win after scoring the tying goal and finally evening out the score,” Moran said.

Almost three minutes later, that prediction would turn out to be true. With six minutes left in the game, Antoon-Algieri struck again for her second goal of the day to put the Gauchos ahead by one goal at 9-8.

“It’s a privilege to be the solidifying factor behind a team that plays hard until the last minute,” Antoon-Algieri said. “That night it was the whole team that fought for ground balls, kept UCLA from scoring, won the draws and scored three consecutive goals in order for us to tie; I just happened to be the one that scored [the last one].”

Ramsey was ecstatic with the comeback.