For the first time since 1983, Wilkes University will have a varsity men’s lacrosse team, which will be under the leadership of first time Head Coach Curtis Jaques.
Despite not having a varsity team for the last 33 years, many students have been playing the sport on the club level.
Sophomore midfielder Glenn Weist said, “I’m very excited to be part of something special. It’s going to be really nice to be playing lacrosse on the varsity level so we have something to compete for, which is a championship.”
There have been so many students playing the sport on the club level that Jaques credits those students as one of the major reasons why Wilkes was able to finally make a team to compete on the varsity Division III level.
“I am very excited for the inaugural season,” Coach Jaques said. “I know that the support from the school, support from the alumni, and support from the whole lacrosse family is here, and it’s fun to see it all come into fruition.”
As a result, the coaching staff has been recruiting the last two years in areas like upstate New York, Long Island, New Jersey, Connecticut, Philadelphia and Maryland, as well as other parts of Pennsylvania, where the sport is very popular.
The men’s lacrosse coaching staff will likely have no issue getting recruits due to lacrosse being the fastest growing sport in the country.
For the inaugural season, the team already has some goals set, one of which is being able to compete right away for a chance to win a conference championship. Even with that goal, the team, along with the coach, knows it is all about the long term, with the inaugural season being the first step for that.
“Before we even get into things, I want our program, I want our team to learn how to compete and be our personal best,” said Jaques.
The team’s first two games will take place in Virginia during spring break on March 8th and 9th, against Ferrum College and Bridgewater College respectively, to kick off the inaugural season.