Mounties remain positive despite winless record, lack of recruitment and funding challenges
The Mount Allison men’s lacrosse team is not out on the field to win a championship. Despite the team’s struggle to find a win in the past couple of seasons, they continue to find enough players to make a team.
Nick Scott, co-captain of the Mounties, explained some of the issues the players have had in building a competitive team here on campus. “Like other club sports on campus, we don’t receive funding to help build our program. We don’t recruit players out of high school, but instead must be hopeful for incoming students to be interested in the sport,” said Scott.
Playing in the MUFLL (Maritime University Field Lacrosse League), the athletes face teams from large schools that often hold tryouts with large pools of players. The league currently consists of Dal, SMU, UNB Fredericton, St. FX, Acadia and our fellow Mounties. Without recruitment, it’s hard to find talented players to form a competitive team that can keep up with the competition. To make matters worse, the MUFLL has a registration fee for each team. “Without funding, we must pay the league fee out of our own pockets. Therefore, it costs us $300 per player just to play in the league,” Scott explained.
To put this fee into context, many students don’t have $300 to throw into a club sport that only lasts two months. With so many other free clubs and societies on campus, convincing people to play on the lacrosse team can be a challenge.
Brook Beale, a returning player, commented on how he’s never considered quitting, despite the struggles that the club goes through. “I think what keeps me playing is the boys on the team,” he said. “We all get along great and as the season progresses we get quite close to one another. It really makes travelling to games a lot of fun and keeps the energy up despite what the scoreboard says.”
Scott shared a similar comment on what keeps him coming back year after year: “Playing for the team has really brought me close with a lot of guys here on campus. Yeah, we lose a lot, but in the end it isn’t about winning or losing. It’s just enjoying field lacrosse.”
Neither Scott nor Beale played field lacrosse prior to coming to Mt. A. Both athletes were interested in the sport and quickly picked up the rules and learned to love the game. A lot of players on the team haven’t played before and need to learn from scratch, which can be a struggle with a short two-month season.
Despite this time frame, Scott commented on how easily improvement was noted in their rookies. “Thinking back to September when we had guys show up who had never held a lacrosse stick, it’s amazing to see how far they’ve come as individuals, and our team overall,” he said.
The lacrosse team concludes their regular season this Sunday against Dalhousie and will participate in playoffs a week later. Then the season wraps up for good, but the boys plan on staying close, even off the field.