Lacrosse alumni, athletes face off in friendly scrimmage

Memories of lacrosse came flooding back to the alumni as they stepped once again onto Appenzeller Field. For many, it was their first year away from their favorite pastime.

On Sept. 19, the current Guilford lacrosse team faced off against former players as a part of an annual game during alumni weekend.

“We had a great time playing against (opponents other than ourselves),” said men’s lacrosse head coach Thomas Carmean. “(In contrast), the alumni had a great time coming back for the whole weekend and getting a chance to play on their field.”

The game is a tradition at the College but factors like the availability of alumni and weather conditions have prevented it from taking place in recent years.

“In the last three years, it poured rain on alumni weekend,” said Carmean. “(This year) we finally had a sunny day for it and we were able to kick the game off.”

The game was a lighthearted scrimmage. Players had the chance to meet up with former teammates and get to know older alumni. Many of the game’s participants were recent graduates who were getting the chance to play lacrosse with their friends again.

“Being able to talk to former teammates and play against them again was exciting for the current players,” said junior midfielder Nicholas Damiano in an email interview. “It was also great to catch up with them after the game.”

While the current players held the flow for almost the entire duration, it was not about the score. It was about enjoying their time together.

“It was great for the alumni to score the opening goal of the game,” said former defender Nicholas Huckins ’15 in an email interview. “Unfortunately, not too many followed after that, but at least we could say that we held the lead at one point during the game. I really just enjoyed playing against my former teammates and coming back to (Appenzeller) Field.”

It was also a great learning experience for the current team. Athletes found some moves they can improve on by observing and competing with experienced players. For this season’s first-years, the game was the first time they played competitively at a college level.

“One of the main things that I think our team can take away from the alumni game is how to focus and control the speed of play,” said senior attacker and team captain Adam Fiore in an email interview. “The (difference) in the speed of play from high school to college is a much faster pace.”

Alumni interest in the current lacrosse team has grown significantly over the past few years. As a result, almost 20 graduates attended this year’s session.

“With the success we have had in the last five years we have seen a resurgence in alumni interaction and involvement,” said assistant men’s lacrosse coach Nathanael Bates in an email interview. “Their support has been outstanding.”

The event created lasting memories for alumni and players alike. Many wish to continue the tradition in the years to come.

“I hope to be able to come back next year to play,” said Huckins. “I had a great experience this past weekend and want to stay in touch with the current team.”