SAU Buzz

Men's Lacrosse

by AJ Engelsen
Posted on Feb 16, 2017

The St. Ambrose University Men's Lacrosse team came into the season ranked fourth in the new conference. They recently joined the conference of six teams and are looking to make an impact in the first year.

This will be their first season under the new coaching staff lead by head coach Garrett Wimberly. Wimberly won the 2013 Deep South Conference Coach of the Year while at the University of Memphis.

Junior midfielder Erik Butzen has really seen a difference with the coaching and is excited to see where Wimberly takes the program.

“They (the coaches) have done a phenomenal job to prepare us,” Butzen said. “They have also done a remarkable job recruiting throughout the Midwest.”  

The team began their season with a trip up to Michigan, but the first game of the season was canceled due to poor weather conditions. They played Lawrence Technological University and University of Michigan-Dearborn on back to back days.

Then, they hosted the Quad City Classic. It was a full day of games where they played University of Iowa, Iowa State University and Bradley University. Coach James VanDenbrink said these games were used to figure out where they were as a team.

“During the Quad City Classic, it gave us as a coaching staff an opportunity to evaluate our players’ competitiveness and skills,” VanDenbrink said. “We found our our skills and what we need to work on.”

This season is about making the SAU lacrosse program a well-known team. They are looked upon as an underdog in the conference, but they hope to finish higher than 4th place, their current ranking.

The top four teams in the Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference will be invited to the conference tournament at the end of the year. The Bees are expecting to be in that tournament. Coach VanDenbrink thinks the team is underrated.

“I expect our team to make the KCAC tournament and compete for the KCAC Championship,” he said.

Butzen would like the opportunity to compete for the KCAC title and thinks the team can match up with anyone.   

“We can’t underestimate teams that we should beat and we need to show up to the big games like against powerhouse Missouri Valley,” Butzen said.

Some of the players on the offensive side who are expected to have a big season are Mat Madril, Quinn Coyle and Jared Morgan. On the defensive side, Louis Mallillin, Anthony Maciag, Dan Tieman and Jake Fetzner are expected to have a big year.

The first home game for the team will be Feb. 24th. The game will held at the St. Vincent facilities. After that, they play two big home games at the end of March against two ranked opponents, University of St. Mary and Robert Morris University - Chicago.