Boy’s Lacrosse looks forward to EPC title game


Photo by Alice Adams.

Erick De La Rosa, Sports Editor

After going 16-1 in the regular season, the boys’ lacrosse team looks forward to winning the EPC championship, and making a run in the district playoffs. 

Under first year coach Stu Speicher, the team has gone undefeated in EPC play, defeating rivals Parkland and Central Catholic in the process. The team plays Central for the 2nd time on May 13 at 7:30, hoping to hoist a trophy in the EPC championship game. The team’s success has been two years in the making: now looking to repeat their 2019 District XI championship as no games were played last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The team only had three returning varsity players and a roster size of only 35 players; previous teams had around 50. Senior defender Zach Palinkas believes that the smaller numbers have only helped to strengthen the bond through the team, and lead to their successful season. 

“We play as a team through all four quarters,” Palinkas said. “There’s zero unselfish play and no one there is looking to improve their own stats. We only had three returning players so a lot of us were hungry to get those spots and we’ve kept that energy throughout the whole season.” 

Junior Zach Yonker is in agreement with Palinkas, crediting the size and closeness of the team as a huge success factor. 

“The team is a lot smaller than normal, so that’s just allowed us to get a lot closer this year,” Yonker said. “We are a family. We’re trying to win this game [tonight], win districts, and even make a state run. It should be fun.”  

Having a standout season, the junior broke the Emmaus single season assist record, but still believes that his squad has more to prove. 

“The record is cool and all, but I couldn’t have done it without my teammates, who at the end of the day, have to put the ball in the back of the net,” Yonker said. “The mentality of this team has been great. We’ve all bought in. Everything the coaches have been telling us has been paying off on the field and I think we could really go farther than anticipated this year.” 

Being the last line of defense, Goalie Ben Franco enjoys his unique perspective on the field, also crediting the close knit nature of the team as a major point of prosperity. 

“It’s the relationships on this team that have driven us,” Franco said. “It’s not just the players too. The fans, old coaches, alumni, and just all the old faces that come along and have supported us this year.;hey all deserve credit.

This team certainly has a chip on their shoulders, and Franco hopes that their play can silence any critics that they had. 

“The way we were portrayed at the beginning of this season was that we were the underdog and we felt as if we deserved more respect than that,” Franco said. “The entire season we have been counted out and I hope we are now turning heads and showing people that we are a legit team, and we are looking to win as much as possible. 

Palinkas’ favorite memory this season was the Hornet’s regular season matchup against Central Catholic. 

“Being able to beat Central was awesome,” Palinkas said. “It was the highlight so far but we’re definitely looking to top that soon.” 

The last time they squared off, The Hornets defeated the Vikings 8 to 7. They square off again tonight at 7:30 for the EPC championship.