In 2013, Dutch Fork students who played lacrosse breathed a sigh of relief at the news that lacrosse would be the newest varsity sport at the school.

In 2013, Dutch Fork students who played lacrosse breathed a sigh of relief at the news that lacrosse would be the newest varsity sport at the school.

“I was excited when Dutch Fork got a school team. It gave me a new opportunity because I couldn’t play when the district only had a club team. It worked out really well for me,” senior Andrew Herbst said.

Previously, students at all three high schools had played on one club lacrosse team through Irmo High School, but the schools decided to fund both boys and girls lacrosse on a varsity and junior varsity level.

“Learning that we were getting our own lacrosse team freshman year was exciting because it meant that I was able to fully represent the school that I attend,” senior Kevin Gagnon said. “However, I was disappointed because I was losing the coaches and teammates I had grown close to at Irmo.”

For some, lacrosse was a game they had played their entire lives, and for others, it was a new beginning.

“My freshman year was when I decided to play lacrosse, so it was really cool that Dutch Fork got a team that same year,” senior Matt Miller said.

Four years later, the school’s inaugural lacrosse class played their final home game, an 11-7 victory of region rival Blythewood.

“It was amazing getting the win but a very bittersweet feeling knowing it’s the last time I was ever able to do something that I enjoyed so much,” senior Jordan Young said.

The senior class has not disappointed, racing to an 11-2 start to the season. Their eleven wins have already set the school record for wins in a season. The win over Blythewood was the first time the team has ever beaten the Bengals.

“The last four years have been a constant progression of hard work and increasing success. It’s been full of effort and teamwork, summer practices and November workouts. The improvements we’ve made are impressive and setting records on every level this year has been an exceptional experience,” Andrew said.

The team has set goals each year, and the effort they have put in has lead the group to be contenders for the state title this season.

“The hard work and time all coalesce and has brought me and my teammates closer and closer to our goal which is playoffs,” Kevin said.

Not only have they come together on the field, the team has formed a unique and inseparable bond through the game.

“There have been lots of ups and downs but overall it’s been the most shaping and amazing group I’ve ever been around,” senior Jake Aaron said.

Whether it be inside jokes, Twitter hashtags, or celebrations after a goal is scored, the group will miss the successful play they have built since the program began their freshman year.

“I’ll miss the jokes. I’ll miss the cheers from the stands that signal the crowd’s excitement with our success,” Andrew said. “I’ll miss the adrenaline-fueled comradery following a play that turned a tiny opening into a winning goal.”

 

Story by Trey Martin, Sam Aaron, Josh German

Photo courtesy of Lyndsey Livingston