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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Laxcats wrap up preseason

    The No. 8 Arizona men’s club lacrosse team wrapped up its preseason Saturday with a strong showing in the Men’s Collegiate Lacrosse Association Best of the West Lacrosse Tournament.

    The Laxcats beat No. 22 Cal Poly-San Luis Obispo before losing to No. 2 Colorado State and No. 20 Utah in the Las Vegas tournament, but the experience gained from the contests kept spirits high.

    You could tell each team really wanted to win and we showed a lot of heart throughout the whole game. It was very physical, and we know it’s going to be a good rivalry in the spring.

    Alex Beauchamp,
    sophomore attacker

    “”It was a lot of fun to get out there and play some other teams,”” said defender Chad Jeffry. “”We started slow, but we were able to pick it up, and we played really well in the second half against Cal Poly.””

    “”We had a good turnout, but we could have done a little better,”” Jeffry added. “”This shows us were we stand and how much harder we need to work during the offseason.””

    Arizona earned a 5-2 victory over Cal Poly, the squad the Laxcats will face when regular-season play kicks off in February.

    Laxcats head coach P.J. Rovinelli said the tournament was a success and allowed the players to work out the kinks in their game while sharpening their Xs and Os, as well.

    “”The team worked hard and showed a lot of heart and hustle,”” Rovinelli said. “”We had a good weekend of lacrosse, and it was nice to play some teams besides ourselves. We should be a very dangerous team.””

    The second game of the weekend was an intense battle-royal against CSU that could have gone either way – Arizona eventually fell 4-3 – as both teams exhibited brilliant goaltending.

    “”CSU’s goalie was amazing,”” Jeffry said. “”It seemed like he was stopping everything we could throw at him.””

    If not for outstanding saves by Laxcats goalie Justin Chinich, the game wouldn’t have been as close, Jeffry added.

    Chinich “”was amazing,”” said attacker Alex Beauchamp. “”He’s a (new) goalie, so we didn’t really know what to expect, but he played lights-out all weekend.””

    Rovinelli said Chinich, a transfer from Penn State, made game-changing saves consistently against CSU.

    “”Our defense played an aggressive style, very high-pressure, and the solid rotation of guys played very well,”” Rovinelli said. “”The types of shots that (Chinich) was seeing are exactly the type of shots we wanted him to see. Now that we know we have that combination, it’s looking very promising on the defensive end.””

    Beauchamp said the energy in the Rams game was unbelievable in a preseason preview of a regular-season battle.

    “”Both teams went balls out the entire game,”” he said. “”You could tell each team really wanted to win, and we showed a lot of heart throughout the whole game. It was very physical, and we know it’s going to be a good rivalry in the spring.””

    Arizona’s third game was a 5-3 loss to Utah. The Laxcats frequently played younger players to get them experience.

    Overall, the team accomplished what it wanted to in Las Vegas – provide a quality showing while also getting a feel for how they compare with other teams, Rovinelli said.

    “”The seniors played really well this weekend,”” he said. “”I was expecting them to show me some leadership, and they delivered. Overall, I think everybody should be commended, the depth (of the team) in particular. The role players stepped up big, and the overall team hustle and desire was very impressive.””

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