I’m not sure of the exact number, but of our 18 victories this year, way more than half had both teams under 10 goals for the contest. Most all of the games we played were one or two goal games. These are nerve racking, but I enjoy the intensity, I really do. I am not afraid to lose. I do not like it (losing), a lot, but I do not fear it. This 2003 team never flinched. They never played not-to-lose. They played for the thrill of victory, and they raged against the agony of defeat. We lost just two games, and by a total of two goals. We chased no one.
DOING WHAT WE HAD TO DO
One thing keeps coming into my mind when I think about how we survived being on the edge of vulnerability for most of every game we played. The scores alone were scarey. What we ultimately found was a way to force other teams to play our kind of game, which for better or for worse, turned out to be a 6-4 kind of thing. When we played our first game back in February and beat Arizona in Tucson, 6-5, I think we (CSU lax) all looked at that as kind of a fluke thing, and that soon we would be back to scoring 12-15 goals every game. NOT! It was in fact a foreshadowing of all things to come. Our most complete game during the regular season was the one against Michigan in the “Face-off at the Fort” in early April. That was because we played offense that almost matched our D.
We could not “run and gun” this year, as was the original plan with the Farquhar’s, Harper’s, Everett’s and Bird’s that were tearing it up for us during fall ball, but could not be there for showtime for one or another reason. They stayed with us for the journey, though, and those four should all return next year.
The family remained, it just had a different set of characters from what I had anticipated. At times this spring some of “us” couldn’t even catch. I seriously considered a long pole on EMO (Plonkey in the crease).
I HAVE NEVER HAD THE PATIENCE TO FISH
In the final against UCSB I felt like “The Fisherman” Coach as I would cast an attackman out upon our sea of dreams to see if he could help hook us a goal. After one or two “unforced errors” I would yank him back in. I’d reel one in and out would run another piece of freshman Gaucho bait, my finger resting, very twitchy, on the line. I was hopeful of a better result with each cast. We only ended up with 6 of them ‘goalfish’ in the net , but amazingly that was enough of a “catch of the day” to sustain us. I have, however, already spotted some very hungry “anglers” on this team who are not thinking about what we have in the boat, but rather where the boat is headed now.
IT AIN’T OVER TIL IT’S OVER
We were NEVER #1 in 2003 until the last game was done. It was that way for most games, too. I assume that even now there are still non-believers out there. A final top 25 poll is coming out later this week. They never had a post season poll before to my recollection. Even now I wonder if they will actually vote us #1. Just this once………. I will.