Offense sells tickets, defense wins championships.
This is the thought shared by many, including Brandon Freeman, senior captain of Ohio State’s men’s lacrosse team.
The Buckeye’s offense has some firepower, but the defense is where the experience is at. On the offensive side of the ball, the Buckeyes have had to replace their two leading scorers from last year.
On the other side, the defense is loaded with talent, including three seniors who were voted team captains. The defense is lead by Freeman, the goalie. The other two captains are Scott Foreman and Andrew Stimmel.
“Having all three captains on the defensive side puts a lot of pressure on us,” Foreman said. “But that pressure is what we want.”
Foreman and the rest of the defense found this pressure in their opening game of the season but overcame it. In a matchup that pitted two Top 10 teams, the Buckeyes topped No. 9 Villanova 10-8.
Winning close games is what Stimmel said the defense prides itself on. Stimmel added that when the defense comes up with big plays it builds confidence.
Another thing that helps out the defense is that they have all played together for a while. Stimmel said the defense is able to take chances to make plays. Playing with each other for so long, the others know where their teammates will and can back them up.
This leadership to the lacrosse team is nothing new. Coach Nick Myers said the captains lead the team on and off the field.
“Last year’s team completed just under 400 hours of community service,” Myers said. “This year’s seniors wanted to go over 500 and to date we are just under 550 hours.”
Freeman credited the past captains to making him a good leader. He said that watching them showed him how to be a better leader.
OSU has one of the toughest schedules in years and for them to succeed the defense will have to be near perfect.