By Canio Marasco III
The Canisius men’s lacrosse team was defeated twice in the past week, as they were trounced by the Colgate Raiders and outclassed by the Albany Great Danes.
After starting the season 3-1, the Griffs have lost the last two games, as they played the two best teams on their schedule.
Canisius was blown-out 18-5 by the Raiders, in the first of their two-game losing skid. The game started poorly for the Griffs, as they were outscored 6-1 in the first quarter. The Griffs were unable to regain their footing, as they tried to play catch-up for the rest of the game. The team was only able to find three goals through the first three quarters, as a lack of offense put unending pressure on the defense.
Coach Miyashita said that the Griffs poor start and lack of focus in the offensive zone doomed them from the start. He said the effort simply wasn’t acceptable.
“Our offense didn’t come to play that day,” said Miyashita. “We had a really bad effort on the offensive end with too many unforced turnovers. In the first quarter, we had five possessions – we had one goal and four turnovers. That put our defense on their heels and we had to play a lot more defense, which destroyed any potential to build any momentum early in the game.”
The Griffs also played the Great Danes this past week, who are currently the top-ranked team in the country. Despite Albany being one of the best teams in the country, the Griffs hung with the Great Danes – even leading at one point, 4-1.
However, the Great Danes adjusted and went on a 16-0 run to put the game out of reach. In the end, the Griffs dropped their second game in a row, as they lost 19-11.
Miyashita said that despite the loss, there were positives that could be taken from the game.
“There are a lot of positive,” Miyashita said. “Our starts to games have been strong so far this year, and we came out of the gate, and were able to get a 3-0 lead, and we were up 4-1 at one point. We battled them well in the first quarter … We came out and played really well at the start and went toe-to-toe with one of the best teams in the country. And, throughout the rest of the game, we battled – the bench was great – the attitude and the energy was great.”
The Griffs next game is against Siena, which marks the beginning of conference play for Canisius. Coach Miyashita said that the Griffs would love to be competitive in the MAAC this season. But, at this point, they’re going to take it one game at a time.
“It’s just like anything, we’re going to take it game-by-game,” Miyashita said. “At the end of the regular season, we want to be in the top four, be in the MAAC Tournament and have a shot at winning the tournament.
“First things first, we have to take every opponent seriously, and be ready for them because every game is really important in conference play.”
Despite the two tough losses, Miyashita said that the Griffs haven’t lost any confidence. The Griffs started the season 3-1 and looked poised to be a solid competitor in the MAAC this season. Even with two losses in a row, Miyashita said the locker room is still composed and ready for conference play.
“I think our confidence is fine,” said Miyashita. “Our last two games have been against the two toughest opponents we face this season. I think there was a good learning curve about what we need to do … I think the mood in the locker room is good. Guys are in great spirits, and we’re excited to kick-off conference play this weekend.”