FeaturesLacrosseSportsThe Buzz

SAU Men’s Lacrosse Home Opening Weekend

After having their first six games of the season on the road, the St. Ambrose University Men’s lacrosse team finally had the chance to impress the home crowd in a pair of games on Friday, March 10th, and Saturday, March 11th. 

Going into home opening weekend, the bees found themselves on a 2-4 record and wanted to improve this record. And that is exactly what the team did over the weekend. 

During the home opener on Friday against Madonna University, the bees struggled on the offensive end during the first period, but quickly turned it around with multiple bees scoring. 

The bee’s scoring was led by junior Midfielder, Tyler Yetka, in their outing on Friday. Which helped them get the 10-8 win against Madonna University. 

On Saturday, the bees had a physical matchup against Midland University, but that didn’t stop them from scoring goals. The bees were led by senior Midfielder, Cole Danner, who led the bees with five goals in the game. 

Junior midfielder Tyler Yetka (8) going in to shoot a goal in a game versus Midland. Photo Courtesy of St. Ambrose University Athletics. 

When talking to Tyler Yetka about the opening game wins, Yetka stated, “It feels great! We had a tough start to the season, but we’re starting to clique. The defense is starting to clique with the offense. We are starting to get everything going like a solid system and we are looking forward to getting the season going.” 

Looking at Yetka’s performance over that weekend, he scored 7 goals and added one assist over the two-game period. When asked about his performance in these games, Yetka said, “It’s great! I wasn’t able to play last year, but I can step in this year. I was able to see how the program works here and what my role will be. I am stepping into my role and the other guys stepping into their roles.”  

With the team starting its first six games on the road with a 2-4 record, the home opening weekend had helped boost the bees’ confidence. When talking to Yetka about this he said, “We are hoping to keep it going. We are on a roll and we are going to keep it the way it’s going and ride the wave.”

Head Coach Jon Paul giving his players high fives as they come onto the field for warm-ups at St. Vincent’s Athletic Complex—photo Courtesy of St. Ambrose University Athletics.

When asking head coach Jon Paul about the opening wins Paul said, “These two wins are huge for us. [It] gets us back on track after not starting as well as we wanted to. These two home wins are really what we needed.” 

Paul also stated about the wins, “I think that it is a big confidence booster. [With] beating a really good Madonna team was huge. [The Midland] one wasn’t as pretty, but putting a lot of points on the board, and getting a lot of guys in the game, was a big confidence booster. Now we just gotta keep that rolling.”

With returning some key upperclassmen from the previous season, it helps to have them help the underclassmen know what to expect with playing at the collegiate level. Having those key players returning, can help build a team, while also trying to build around those key players.

Looking forward to the rest of the season, there are always some key players on every team that help build the team’s success. 

When Paul was asked about what players we should pay attention to, he said, “On the offensive end so far, Tyler Yetka has been lights out. Doing a lot scoring-wise, passing the ball, and keeping the guys up on the sideline.” Which should not be a surprise with his performance during the weekend.

Paul also went on to say, “Defensively, Nolan [Hayes] has been playing huge. [Also] Dawson [Dickerson] is stepping up and playing close defense this year has been huge.” 

After this set of home games, the Bees got themselves to a 4-4 record going into another set of home games against Columbia College and Clarke University.