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Thursday, Mar 07, 2024 at 1:28 pm

Syracuse Men’s Lacrosse Box Connection

 When most people think of a lacrosse field, they imagine something like this, a large open space, larger than a football field, 110 yards by 60, but in reality, there’s an entire other subsection of the sport  called box lacrosse played at places like this. Burnett Park on the west side of Syracuse. No, your eyes don’t deceive you.

Those are hockey boards all the way around. They put turf on top. And the impact that that box game plays on the field game is undeniable.
“Kids should play box first as the ball really never goes out of bounds.” Former Syracuse Head Coach John Desko said, “So that young kids playing to go out and play the field game,  maybe a bad pass or the ball goes outta bounds. You gotta chase the ball for. You know, a couple of yards with the ball and bring it back. The box is always in play and you can just get a lot more touches, a lot more repetition, uh, in the, in the box game.”

Four orange players spent this past summer playing in the Ontario junior lacrosse league, the top amateur competition in the world.

“I see a huge benefits in playing in the box game. You know, um, you don’t have as much time and space. So you’re, you know, it’s a little bit more confined.” Rusty Kruger, Spallina and Deere’s coach in the OJLL said,  “And so, you know, the decision making is a lot quicker and, uh, you know, it’s a little more physical just because there’s not as much time and space. So, um, you know, obviously on a field or in a box, there’s not as much room to get away from your defender and stuff.”

“You know, even just cutting through the crease, you know, not, you know, not really tightening up, you know, kind of being able to just cut through and, you know, play and, you know, take  Checks and just, you know, kind of just keep on playing.” SU sophomore Joey Spallina said.

“I think that just, you know, we, we had an offense where we can just go out there and have fun and that’s something that, you know, it’s just playing backyard lacrosse, something that I love to do.” Syracuse freshmen Trey Deere said, “So I think like just, just looking at it at that perspective, perspective that, you know, we’re just going to go out there and have some fun and let the plays come to us.”

The affect of playing a summer in Canada for Orange Attackmen, Joey Spallina and Trey Deer extended off the field as well.

“I mean, uh, I pretty much lived with Trey the whole summer, so, you know, obviously you guys can see how that went, but it was good.” Spallina said.
“I mean, we had a great time, and, uh, This summer, we kind of  spent almost every day together. Um, we lived at two separate houses, but, um, there was a group, uh, there was six of us, and we were that. The place I was staying at or Joey’s house and um, we basically did everything together. Um, whether it was golfing, going to shoot, like whatever it may be, we did it as a group. So, it kind of made, uh, we kind of built like a mini family and so it was good to get to know him, especially before coming playing here.” Deere said.

This past summer is already paying off for Spallina. He leads the nation in points. Adam Gotkin, CitrusTV.