“It’s a complete change in philosophy,” Williams said. “More of the East coast style is playing goal to goal instead of sideline to sideline. You’re playing goal to goal, so you’re playing right down your opponents throat on offense and defense.”
West coast lacrosse is played from sideline to sideline and is more of a slow-paced, set-up-a-play-and-run-it style of game. East coast lacrosse is based more on improv and less on running a set play.
This year’s team will have a fresh start and a young roster, which will enable them to learn the coach’s new philosophy together.
“This year we are actually basically a new team from last year,” sophomore midfielder and team captain Colton Hansen said, “Most of the players this year are either freshman or sophomores. We didn’t have a ton of returners from last year. Having said that, I am really excited for what we have going for us right now.”
This year’s team is made up of two seniors, one junior, five sophomores and eight freshmen. Two impact players to watch on this year’s team are sophomore midfielder Tanner Johnson and attack man Michael Bangerter.
Williams has two goals for his team heading into the season. The first is to win, but he described his long-term goal for the program by saying, “ Really what I would eventually like to do is get the club to a sport here at the university. My long-term goal is to eventually be a school sport just like basketball or baseball.”
The No. 12ranked Wolverines enter the season coming off an 8-4 record and a first round loss in the Men’s Collegiate Lacrosse Association to eventual champions Davenport.
Following season-opening road games against Cal State Fullerton and Western Washington, UVU will return and play their first home game on Saturday, March 10, against Metro State.
Some of the big games on the schedule for the Wolverines will take place toward the end of the season with games against Westminster (March 17), Northern Colorado (April 17) and their season-ending game in Logan against the Aggies of Utah State (April 20).
By Zach Smith