SMU hosts Patriot Cup, defeats Texas A&M to remain near division lead in Lacrosse
Published: Tuesday, March 5, 2013
Updated: Tuesday, March 5, 2013 23:03
SMU club lacrosse hosted a litany of teams this past weekend when the fifth annual Patriot Cup was played in Ford Stadium. The cup was incredibly well attended, with an estimated 3,000 bodies in the stands for the cup’s marquee matchup.
The Patriot Cup, which is a fundraiser for the Wounded Warrior Project charity, included division I powerhouse programs Dartmouth and Georgetown, Club lacrosse teams Boston College, SMU and Texas A&M, and high school teams from both near and far to compete while raising money for a good cause.
Matt Milburn, a high school senior who is considering SMU, felt that the tournament was a positive indicator that SMU would be a good choice for him.
“I was glad to see top-level college lacrosse in Texas,” said Milburn. “[The tournament] definitely [helped influence my decision as to where I will attend college next year]. Going and seeing wonderful people at SMU cemented it as a high-quality school. SMU really put on the charm.”
The first game of this year’s competition pitted host SMU against Boston College. Both squads play in the Men’s Collegiate Lacrosse Association (MCLA), an association of club lacrosse teams.
Boston College started the cold evening game off, scoring first. BC’s attackman ran downhill on the SMU defense and unleashed a strike at goal that set the tone for the night’s game. After SMU briefly tied up the game on a Connor Watson goal, BC never looked back, completely trouncing the SMU squad in a 14-9 rout of the Mustangs. For the most part, the Mustangs played with a lack of inspiration. The Defense, especially in front of the crease, aimed to put a hard check on any attackmen that came through the middle, get out of position, and become the victim of another goal scored. Furthermore, the SMU middies committed the cardinal sin more than once and subbed out on a defensive transition, which allowed Boston College a two or sometimes three man advantage on the attack.
Matthew Young, a PR rep for the Patriot Cup who was encountering one of his first games of lacrosse was hopeful after the SMU-BC matchup.
“Personally, I thought that the Boston College-SMU matchup was a bit lopsided, it was interesting to see schools from this area play Boston College [who has a more established club program, Texas [schools] have work to do, but did well,]” Young said.
Although the Mustangs did not execute subs well and played porous defense, they did play well while they were a man up, converting many of their opportunities to score while a BC player was in the penalty box. This kept the game from getting completely out of hand.
The marquee matchup was played the next day as Division I teams from Dartmouth College and Georgetown took to Ford Stadium’s field. The Hoyas, who are currently unranked, were the eventual victors in the game that saw no leads greater than two points at any time. The final goal from Georgetown in the last minutes of the game sealed the men from Dartmouth’s 10-9 loss.
The final game of the event was played between MCLA conference rivals SMU and Texas A&M. SMUs superior stick handling, individual skill and depth of bench frustrated the Aggies so thoroughly that two members of the A&M defense got into a scuffle during halftime in which one player attempted to spear his teammate with his lacrosse stick. SMU completed the utter rout of the Aggies by a score of 14-3, mercifully taking its foot off of the pedal in the second half.
“You could tell how dominant they were against A&M, they were much better against local teams, than against Boston College,” Young said in apost-competition interview.
SMU will hope to improve their overall record of 3-3 when the Mustangs travel on the road to Tallahassee, Fla. for an out-of -conference fight against Florida State of March 9.