Lacrosse season humbly ends

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In a sports world polluted by cheating, the Biola lacrosse team is a breath of fresh air.

The lacrosse team also happens to be good — very good. The Eagles won 10 out of their last 11 games, and outscored their opponents by a total of 95 goals over the 11-game stretch.

“It was a long season,” said senior attacker Ben Agadoni. “Just playing the game consistently with each other allowed us to get better and better.”

Better is an understatement. After a 0-4 start against quality teams, the men picked up steam as the season went on, finishing 11-6 overall and 4-0 in conference play and earning a ranking of 19th in the nation for Division II.

“Our team chemistry really improved after we played in Vegas,” said junior attacker Brad Westcott. “A lot of guys really stepped up.”

Last Sunday the men wrapped up their spot as conference champions in convincing fashion against UC Santa Cruz, defeating the Slugs 15-3. The Eagles came out firing, scoring four goals in the first quarter and holding the Slugs scoreless. They would go on to allow only one goal in each successive quarter to UCSC. On the season, Agadoni tallied up 48 goals and 51 assists, amassing 99 total points. Westcott was not far behind with 50 goals and 24 assists – 74 total points. The dynamic duo was the highest scoring tandem in WCLL Division II.

The win against UCSC qualified the men for Nationals. However, a team member was unknowingly playing while he was ineligible because he dropped below 12 units. Under the league rules, this would cause Biola to forfeit each game that the member was ineligible for.

While many teams would attempt to sweep such a nuance under the rug, the lacrosse team came before league officials and admitted the wrong doing without any provocation.

Previously, violators have faced two or three year sanctions on their program, but the integrity and honesty with which the lacrosse team presented itself lessened the punishment – the team would not be allowed to participate in Nationals this year.

While disappointed, the team can walk with their heads held high knowing that their coming forward positively represented Christ.

“We want to light the fire that God has in store for other guys,” said Westcott. “After the games we are able to pray and talk to the players on the other team.”

The lacrosse team gives us a beacon of hope that there is still integrity in sports and serves as an excellent reminder that the sports field is also the mission field.