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The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

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Lilli Dellheim '25 M.A., Special to the Hawk • July 13, 2024

Men’s lacrosse freshmen ready to make impact in spring

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Freshman attack Ryan Doran on Sweeney Field after practice. PHOTOS: ROSE BARRETT ’20/THE HAWK

The St. Joe’s men’s lacrosse team has added 14 freshmen to their 2019 roster after after graduating 12 players last season.

According to Head Coach Taylor Wray, all of these first-year student athletes will have an opportunity for significant playing time, but freshman attack Ryan Doran is at the forefront.

“There’s been an opportunity for a lot of these freshmen to compete and get themselves on the field and I think that’s been exciting for them,” Wray said. “It’s certainly motivating for an athlete when you feel like there’s an opportunity to earn a spot and get some time early in your career.”

Doran said he’s poised to start right away. Despite missing most of his senior high school season due to a fracture in his hip, he said that he’s made great strides in his short time on Hawk Hill.

Wray said that Doran has proven he’s ready to make an impact on the field.

“He will probably start at attack, after having a strong fall,” Wray said. “He worked really hard in the weight room and got himself significantly bigger and stronger in the fall. He’s played his way into a key role.”

Doran comes from a lacrosse family, as his brother played for Ohio State University and his sister played for Stoney Brook University. He said he has lofty goals headed into his freshman season.    

“I would like to make the NEC All-Rookie Team and be our team’s Rookie of the Year,” Doran said. “We’re a young team, but I would like to win the NEC Championship.”

Freshman face-off specialist Zach Cole said that once this team gets in the playoffs, anything can happen.

“We’re gritty, we work really hard and scrap it out and I think that’s how we’re going to win a lot of games this year,” Cole said.

Ryan Doran (left), Taylor Wray (middle) and Zach Cole (right) after training session.

With an accomplished group of young players, Wray said they will have to adjust to a heightened level of play in all facets of the game, such as speed, skill and physicality.

Cole added that in order to succeed, this young group can’t think of themselves as freshmen.

“You just have to play up to the level of competition,” Cole said. “There’s no time to feel bad for yourself,” Cole said.

Doran said St. Joe’s gives him the tools to be a successful student athlete.

“[While being recruited], I liked how they were focused on making you a better lacrosse player but also focused on helping you off the field becoming a better person and a better teammate,” Doran said.

Despite a preseason ranking that placed the Hawks fifth out of the six teams in the NEC,  Doran said the team is ready to take on the league with a collection of young energy.

“I’ve been hearing a lot that we’re ‘rebuilding’ this year and I just want people to know we’re not rebuilding,” Doran said. “We’re gunning for an NEC championship,” 

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