Advancing to the final four of the state tournament was not the only achievement the Zionsville boys’ lacrosse team accomplished this year before bowing out to Cathedral 9-5 in the semifinals.
Coach Matt Garvey said he was most proud of the things his players did off the field.
"They volunteered their time at the Caring Center in Lebanon to clean a thrift store,” Garvey said. “Held a free lacrosse clinic for third and fourth graders, attended weekly youth practices to offer assistance, and raised over $2,000 for the Just Win Ruby cause.”
The team finished the regular season with a record of 12-4 and 10-1 in-state with their only loss coming to eventual state champ Carmel.
In the postseason, the Eagles were a top four-seed and earned a first round bye. They hosted Culver Military Academy in the quarterfinals and won 12-1.
Zionsville advanced to play a Cathedral team they had previously beaten 15-11 during the regular season. But, the Eagles fell short in the semifinals 9-5 to Cathedral that would have set up a rematch in the finals to avenge the Eagles’ only other in-state loss to Carmel.
Also, according to Laxpower.com, the Eagles had the toughest strength of schedule in the state. Their schedule included out-of-state powerhouses Montgomery Bell Academy (Tennessee) and Louisville Trinity (Kentucky).
Garvey said it was the team’s work ethic and ability to never quit on each other that made this team successful.
“Early in the season,” Garvey said. “We were down 6-1 to Noblesville in the second quarter. Our guys rallied to tie it at sevens at halftime and then eventually pulled out the win 12-11. That right there shows the kind of winning mentality this team had.”
The Eagles had nine players named to the All-State team. Junior defender Luke Beebe and junior goalie Ryan Spoonmoore were both named first team All-State. Sophomore attack Ben Sherman and senior defender Christian Simon were named second team All-State. Junior attack Ryan Broderick, sophomore attack Luke Whitaker, senior midfielder Zach Rawson, senior midfielder Nick Wampler, and senior defender Derek Salge were named all honorable mention All-State.
The Eagles were led in points (goals and assists) by Whitaker with 74, goals by Broderick with 49, and assists by Sherman with 37.
Sherman also led the Eagles in ground balls with 65.
Simon had 29 takeaways to lead the Eagles. Spoonmore had 220 saves on the season with a 62 percent save percentage.
The Eagles will be losing nine seniors: Simon, Rawson, Wampler, Salge, Spencer Bellefuil, Bryson Graves, Gabe Thimlar, Alex Merkel and Donovan McCloskey.
An impactful group who left quite an impact on Zionsville lacrosse.
“Their leadership and work ethic really set the tone for this team,” he said. “All nine seniors will be missed not just because of their play on the field, but because of how they positively handled themselves off the field in representing this program.