Sports Men's Lacrosse

Men’s lacrosse gears up for postseason run

Freshman attack Dylan Garner tries to shake Cal Poly San Luis Obispo senior defender Luke Willon during Chapman’s 10-9 victory over the Mustangs on Wilson Field March 14.

Freshman attack Dylan Garner tries to shake Cal Poly San Luis Obispo senior defender Luke Willon during Chapman’s 10-9 victory over the Mustangs on Wilson Field March 14.

Following its 8-7 loss against Arizona State in the Southwestern Lacrosse Conference playoff game, the Chapman men’s lacrosse team is gearing up for another shot at a national championship. Chapman received the fourth overall seed in the Men’s College Lacrosse Association National Championship. The team lost last season to the Sun Devils 10-5 in the semifinals. The Panthers take the field against the 13th seed Michigan State Monday in a rematch from earlier this season that the Panthers won 13-6. While the Panthers previously defeated the Spartans with ease, freshman Nathan Cohen said the playoffs are a completely different beast. “Obviously we have a target on our back since we beat them earlier in the year but we’re not going to underestimate them,” he said. “They won their conference tournament, something we weren’t able to do and we aren’t going to underestimate them.” Ranked second in the nation by the Under Armour Men’s College Lacrosse Association coaches poll during the season, the Panthers fell to the Sun Devils in a dramatic conference playoff game. Despite the loss, Cohen said the team has buckled down this week in practice in preparation for the playoffs. “After we lost, the morale wasn’t as high but I think the seniors and coaches gave us a lot of positivity to focus on,” he said. “We’ve been putting the pieces together to make ourselves more complete and focused.” Staying focused has been one of head coach Dallas Hartley’s main priorities this year and the team has followed suit. Although the team has high aspirations, Cohen said the seniors constantly remind the players to not get carried away. “We all want to win the national championship, I think that’s the plan but we have to take it one game at a time,” he said. “We want to look at the big picture but right now we’re just focusing on beating Michigan State.” Chapman will take on Michigan State at 4:45 p.m. Monday at University California, Irvine.

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