The snow on campus has melted and the sacred down time that Killington Mountain School's student-athletes once may have directed toward tuning and waxing skis and boards has now been swapped for tossing a ball back and forth outside or taking shots on net, all while talking about the upcoming season-- lacrosse season, that is.
Now in its second year of existence, the lacrosse program at KMS is gaining even more traction, with an ever-increasing men's roster and a brand-new girls team. The men's team, under the expert watch of coaches Dave Willis, Tao Smith, Alex Denny, and Eric Kuntz spent their first practice on the generously loaned Rutland High School turf, focusing on various shooting and passing techniques. The increased size of the team, matched by an increase in aptitude, got players and coaches pumped to take the field in just a couple of weeks. The team will scrimmage Rutland High School on Wednesday, May 3 at 3:30 pm and play its first game on Thursday, May 4 at GMVS beginning at 4:00 pm.
The girls team, led by Meghan Cleason, Alexis Voutas, Hanne Bailey, and April Hayden spent their practice working on throwing and catching, reviewing some rules, and practicing the face-off. New for some and familiar to others, the sport brought the girls together, unified by laughter and smiles.
For athletes used to being at the top of their games in their respective sports, being new or even not exceptional, at a sport can be humbling. However, there was a palpable feeling on the turf of being "in it together" and a great deal of shared fun discovered in working on something as a team --a multi-discipline team made up of Snowboard, Alpine, Freestyle, Freeski, and SkiCross athletes.
It is the accepted norm that seasonal athletes experience a mixture of complex emotions when coming off the peak of their seasons and transitioning into a training and rest period. Lacrosse at KMS has served to provide that perfect mixture of competitive spirit, full body movement, renewed focus, camaraderie, and most importantly, fun, that can and has made all the difference in the lives of young student-athletes.
Here's to a great spring! We'll see you on the turf -- let's go Black Bears!