The student news site of Los Altos High School in Los Altos, California

The Talon

The student news site of Los Altos High School in Los Altos, California

The Talon

The student news site of Los Altos High School in Los Altos, California

The Talon

Lacrosse Dominates in Third Season

The lacrosse team (currently 11-1 total, 10-0 league) set its sights on going undefeated in league play prior to the start of the season. Rather than achieve this by complicating its strategy, the team has gone undefeated in leagues thus far due to a rigorous practice of fundamentals. The team has found success this year in its practice of sound play, with a particular stress on what appear to be the simplest tasks of all: ball-handling and security.

Coach Greg Mengis is key to the team’s success. He has disciplined his team’s play by imparting onto them the importance of fundamentals.

“The number one thing to focus on [in practice] is fundamentals,” Mengis said. “We have a lot of new players so we practice a lot of drills that emphasize catching and throwing.”

Senior David Mathew, one of the new members of the team, agrees that although it’s not always the appealing, it is effective.

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“In lacrosse, it’s tempting to be flashy, but Coach Mengis reminds us that it’s more important to play effectively and win games,” David said.

Mengis enforces this effective style of play during practices, in particular by assisting specific players with situational awareness. Mengis believes that the team’s success is founded in its ability to adapt based on situations that arise spontaneously during games.

“Coach Mengis and all the other coaches…pull you aside to teach you and help you better understand the situation [during games],” freshman Mackinnon Baugh said.

The more experienced seniors have also helped many of the newer players get acquainted with the system of efficient play.

“As a first year player, it really helps to have experienced players to learn from. The experienced seniors also really set the example for everyone else,” David said. “Dominick Montelaro and Chuck Kuo anchor the defense, Sam Ryan and Matt Manning lead the middies, and Ben Winters heads the attack.”

The team’s most impressive victory of the season, according to David, came against Saratoga, when the team battled through adversity and came away with a come from behind victory. Mengis gave his team some insight into potential adjustments in order to take advantages in the flaws in Saratoga’s game.

“We started off flat and were down 10 to 6 at halftime,” David said. “Instead of giving up, we made our adjustments and came back to win the game 12 to 11.”

Mengis highlighted another game as a signature display of the team’s disciplined approach. A resounding victory at Carlmont portrayed the team’s complete dominance over the rest of its league.

“We really displayed the focus and discipline that we’re trying to achieve at Carlmont,” Mengis said. “We were missing one of our star attack players … and we still dominated the game.”

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