Sections

Idaho Vandals 2011 Season Recap

4 - Published May 24, 2011 by in College, Interviews, Lax Nation

MCLA Fan’s Krieg Shaw was good enough to send us this recap of the Idaho Vandals’ 2011 campaign.  Read on!
-

The Idaho Vandals Men’s Lacrosse team has completed their most successful season to date, highlighted by a dominating performance in the first round of the PNCLL playoffs and a trip to the Final Four for the first time in program history.-

Flava Fletch in action

The Vandals came into the season hungry after losing to Oregon State in 2 OT in the first round of the 2010 PNCLL Playoffs.  Led by Captains Eric Fletcher (Sr., A), Ben Frey (Jr., LSM), Zack Porter (Sr., M), Sean Harrington (Sr., D) and Carl Coppert (Sr., M), the Vandals hit the field hard and determined to reach even deeper into the season.
-
Idaho started the season strong, going 3-0 with wins over Gonzaga University, Portland State University, and University of Montana.  Idaho headed into their annual Spring Break trip confident and ready to make a statement in out-of-conference action.  Idaho’s spring break competition proved to be some of the fiercest they would face all season.  The Vandals went 1-3 with a win against Texas Tech and losses at Chico State, San Diego State and UNLV.
-
Though the Vandals had suffered some tough defeats, the team emerged from their California swing battle-hardened with clear focus on what needed to be worked on to accomplish towards their season goals.
-
Idaho would next face their toughest opponent of the season in Simon Fraser University, then ranked at #16 in the MCLA.  SFU had come to the Palouse with a chip on their shoulder and handed the Vandals their worst loss of the season before heading north to Spokane to do the same to Gonzaga.  Again, Idaho took defeat and experience in equal measure, learning important lessons to apply towards the rest of the season.  The next week, the Vandals bounced back strong with a 13-4 win over Washington State before going into their final two games of the regular season.
-

Goaltender, Blake Uphus

After a strong showing against the Cougs, Idaho prepared for a chance to finally take down the University of Washington Huskies.  At stake: a program-first victory over U-dub and more importantly, home field advantage for the first round of playoffs.  The Vandals started off slow and went into the half down 4-1.  But something clicked and they pushed out an eight-goal second half to bring the game within one.  It would then come down to the final seconds, when an Idaho shot bounced off the pipe, keeping the game from going to overtime and giving the Huskies the slim 10-9 victory.
-
The final game of the regular season would pit the Vandals against their biggest rival, Boise State.  The Vandals took the week off from games after UW to recuperate and prepare for the upcoming match-up against the Broncos.  The game proved to be another great match-up between the two squads and came down to the final minutes when the Broncos were able to hold off a three goal swing by the Vandals to tie the game at 11, scoring two more goals to win the game 13-11.
-
This was an especially tough loss for the Vandals, but the boys had no time to dwell on the defeat.  That evening they learned that they would be returning to Boise the very next weekend for the first round of the PNCLL playoffs and another chance to face BSU again.
-
Idaho came out hot at practice the next week with a fire burning to not let BSU best them twice in a row.  The rematch would be night and day compared to the previous week.  After finishing the first quarter 2-0, the Broncos were able to get two quick goals to tie the game at two, but the Vandals would not let BSU get back into this game and stretched their lead to 7-2 before BSU was able to get their only tally of the second half.  Ultimately, the Vandals came out on top, 11-3, ending BSU’s season and sending Idaho to its first ever PNCLL Final Four appearance.

Celebrate good times...

Excited with their victory and for the week ahead, the Vandals went back to Moscow to prepare the next round of the playoffs and another shot at conference juggernaut, Simon Fraser.  Idaho started off very shaky and after an 18-3 first half, needed some major redirection.  The second half proved to be just that with the Vandals tallying four more of their own and holding SFU to just eight, ending in a 26-7 victory for Simon Fraser and officially ending the Vandals season.
-

Coach Andrysiak doing his thing

Despite the loss, the Final Four proved to be one of the most victorious trips of the year, with several Vandals earning All-Conference honors and the team accomplishing its goal of a trip to the Final Four.  Eric Fletcher and Ben Frey received 1st Team All-Conference, Sean Harrington received 2nd Team AC and Eric Larsen (Jr., D) received Honorable Mention.
-
The Vandals have also already named their Captains for their 2012 campaign.  Ben Frey will remain as a captain for his senior season and will be joined by fellow juniors John Kopke (Jr., A) and Eric Larsen as well as Colin Cain (Fr., M).
Idaho will be in great hands for next season with these gentlemen and will look to perform even better next season.
-
Special thanks goes out to all our parents and fans, without you and all of your contributions, this season and all of our accomplishments would not have been possible.  Seniors, congratulations on your graduation and good luck.  Returning players, work hard in the off-season and we’ll see you next year.
-
You can follow the Vandals on Facebook, on Twitter, and at http://www.208lax.com.


, , , , , , , , ,