Lopes adjust practice strategies amidst COVID-19 restrictions
By: Giovanni Hicks/GCU Staff
The team hasn’t seen a smidge of on-field action in over seven months after all GCU sports were canceled due to the COVID-19 virus in March. A hiatus like this can result in rusty play and a lack of chemistry, but Lopes’ head coach Jeff Guy sees the team ready to take the new season head on.
“The energy level and the enthusiasm are definitely there,” said Guy. “It’s been a long time since these guys have been out here, so they’re ready to get after it.”
Since things look very different during these unprecedented times, the Lopes have adapted their practice strategy in order to abide by social distancing regulations. In warmups, stretching and tossing lines, the team utilized the entirety of the field to ensure that everyone stood six feet apart.
Though forced to play with one another from a distance on the field, the team is still looking to come closer and build comradery outside of the white lines.
“Team chemistry felt pretty good, but there are a couple of new freshmen and transfer players that we don’t know as well,” said Lopes’ senior captain and starting defender Ryan McCormick. “We need to do some team bonding in order to get to know everyone really well this year.”
The Lopes also plan to expand on the success from prior seasons where the team finished one game removed from the Southwestern Lacrosse Conference (SLC) Championship game in 2019, as well as four straight appearances in the Men’s Collegiate Lacrosse Association (MCLA) National Tournament . To continue that success, there must be strong leadership from the upperclassmen.
“Compared to past seasons, we have more veteran leadership, and that is going to help with the development of our younger guys,” said Lopes’ senior captain and starting midfielder Kyle Crews.
With the first practice jitters out of the way, The Lopes focus on gearing up for their first game, scheduled for February 20 at home against University of Southern California and University of California, Los Angeles.
Interested in learning more about the GCU Lacrosse team? learn more here.