I’m Bud O’Hara, a sophomore midfielder for the Boston College Eagles. I come from Chatham, NJ and am a proud graduate of Chatham High School. This is my second year on the squad. Chatham is a 1 hour and 34 minute drive from Seaside Heights.
After two solid days of the first outdoor practices of the season, we hopped on board an Alliance bus and headed towards Ann Arbor, Michigan. I was late for the bus – the very last person to board. It was a busy Thursday and I had some business to attend to during the fifteen minutes prior our 3:00 launch time.
About the 14 hour and 36 minute bus ride, I’ll say this: it ended. We spent a lot of time on a bus this weekend. 31 hours, 14 minutes and 27 seconds to be precise. Thankfully, somewhere around 3:30 am you start to lose consciousness, and even if you can’t find any REM sleep, you end up unconscious for a few hours. That is, unless you’re my roommate for the weekend, freshman Peter Kaloostian. Needless to say, he slept like a small child in a bed next to Alex Prostano once we arrived at the Red Roof Inn at 6:30 AM the next morning. An inspiring viewing of “The U” from ESPN’s 30 for 30 series was the highlight of the bus ride, and definitely set the tone for the rest of the weekend.
After a few more hours of snoozing in the Ikea-ed out Red Roof Inn, a trip to Red Robin was less than satisfactory. A few hours later, we hopped back on board our weekend mobile home in sights of Michigan’s Oosterbaan Fieldhouse. A Wolverines lacrosse game has to be the largest production in the MCLA, and I don’t mean that in a bad way. They do win, after all. There must have been ten coaches on their sideline and a full (happy to see us) cheerleading squad. Pre-game, the Wolverines had a house/dubstep warm-up mix that impressed.
I don’t remember the exact timeline of events that took place over the course of the game. I know we lost, and I know it felt close the whole way. I also know that it was a physical game. Neither team was hesitant to throw the body. No question that we had Michigan sweating. We had some key moments and goals, but too many turnovers. They didn’t pull away until the fourth. They’re a good team – as good as any we’ll face this year. It was a disappointing loss, but against a respectable adversary. Hopefully we’ll get at them again in Denver.
Saturday was an off-day – it was much needed. Many of us were bruised and battered, not only from our battle with the champs, but also from a late night, intra-squad battle royal. Luckily, no one was seriously injured, except for Sophomore Alex Svigos’ ego, which may be forever in a state of disrepair.
We hit the sack early Saturday night in preparation for a must-win game in East Lansing on Sunday afternoon against the Michigan State Spartans. The continental breakfast at the Red Roof was exquisite – frosted flakes, some Otis Spunkmeyer muffins and a bundle of too-ripe bananas. After an hour long bus ride to East Lansing, we arrived at an Astroturf field that hid in the shadows of Spartan Stadium. It was very cold. Some would say too cold for a lacrosse game. We tuned out the cold, or at least tried to, with bigger tasks at hand. We didn’t drive all those hours to lose two games.
Like I said, the game was cold, and I’ll have to attribute much of its sloppiness to the weather. It was an up-and-down match. Neither team possessed the ball for too long, and both were plagued by penalties. Some of the chippiness celebrated in “The U” carried over to both of our games. By the fourth quarter, the game was tied 5-5. The Spartans managed to put home two more before we were able to mount a comeback. After tying the game at 7-7, we got the ball back with about 30 seconds remaining. On a last minute play determined during an MSU timeout, junior Alex Prostano put home a high bounce shot off a feed from Freshman Brent Van Fossan. With 8 seconds left, we had sealed the victory, defeating a higher ranked opponent for the first time this season.
Coming up: home opener, under the lights in Alumni Stadium against Boston University this Wednesday, March 30th, 7:00 PM – hoping the stands get rowdy for the Battle of Commonwealth Avenue.