BY OLIVIA POOLE —
The Lakeshore Lacrosse team is looking forward to a season of growth and good competition. Composed of kids from Shorewood, Whitefish Bay and Nicolet, the coaches and players both have high hopes for what this season will bring. With a 4-2 record, the “Ripsharks” just won 8-7 in overtime against Green Bay, who is always a tough competitor.
“Compared to past years the team isn’t bad. There are a lot of young people, there are a lot of seniors too, but mostly young kids on varsity and good young kids on JV. It’s kind of a developing year, yet we are still doing well,” said Elie Ben Bordow, senior.
Bordow has played lacrosse for six years now, and has always been a part of the Lakeshore program, playing goalie for his fourth year.
“I started playing lacrosse because I’d never tried it and always thought it was pretty cool, it’s a great way to get out any feelings you have, and have a good time,” Bordow said.
Playing with kids from a variety of different schools and backgrounds isn’t a problem for coaches or players, they really enjoy the diversity and opportunities it brings.
“Having kids from all different schools makes the team dynamic super interesting, it opens your eyes and you meet a lot of people you wouldn’t normally meet, and that’s what’s been great about my experience. I’ve made Bay friends that will stay friends,” Bordow said.
Many of the boys on the team have played together since they were little, as the program starts with a combination of Whitefish Bay and Shorewood.
“The key to our whole high school program is the groundwork and feeder system that Coach Kane, [physics teacher and lacrosse coach,] has. In his youth program, kids come from Shorewood and Whitefish Bay, and those two schools make up 90% of our team base,” said Tom Gough, head coach of the varsity team.
Gough has been coaching for eight years now. He started out helping Kane when his son was a freshman at Shorewood. Gough played all throughout his youth in Baltimore and at Roanoke College.
The varsity team this year is compiled of a mixture of players. The starting defense and goalie are all seniors and another Shorewood senior plays long stick middie (LSM). A mix of sophomores, juniors and seniors fill out the other positions in midfield and attack.
“We always have challenges in front of us, a lot of it is the youth/senior mix; trying to develop the younger players as we go through the season. The seniors have been very good at taking leadership roles and trying to help the younger players, from a positional standpoint, improve,” Gough said.
The JV and varsity players are still pretty close, and are very dedicated to keeping the program strong as it develops.
“Something I would say causes us trouble is kids finding time to practice outside of practice and games. Outside of regular practice I would say I practice an hour and a half daily, at most, and I love it,” said Charlie de Vogel, freshman.
Despite being a club team and not a school-sponsored sport, the boys all have big team spirit. “Come out and support us. There are a few people at our games this year but we’re trying to get more, people should come out and watch it’s actually really fun,” Bordow said.
The coaching staff, all of which are volunteers, recognize that the team is different from a school sport, and try to make up for that. “It’s a very solid program. We have great volunteers and kids who always come to practice on time and ready; they treat it like a school-sponsored sport and we try to coach it that way and provide the same aspects. Even though lacrosse hasn’t been accepted into WIAA yet, we think that’s down the road,” Gough said.