Lacrosse Becoming a Big Hit in SelahPosted: Updated:
SELAH, Wash - On a bright and sunny day in Selah, a motley crue of young men gather on a field right behind a youth soccer field and a kid's playground. Some are football players, others are at home on the basketball court, and some don't really play team sports at all. But now they're all coming together to form a new Vikings team, a lacrosse team.
"I'm astonished at how much support we have," says head Coach Jeff Cochran. He's the man responsible for establishing the new club at Selah High School. Cochran is an English teacher for the Vikings and is a lacrosse, or "lax", fanatic. He started the lacrosse team at Central Washington University and in just two month's he's managed to garner significant support for the sport in the Selah community. "I see Selah as the start of something big in the Yakima, Central Washington area."
Already wildly popular on the west side of the state, lacrosse is merely in its infancy in the valley and in Eastern Washington. The Vikings team is also pretty green. Today was just day two of practice and they're trying to quickly catch on to the basics. "Even I can actually catch now!" says club president Brian Vance. "It was an opportunity for me who's not a football, soccer or basketball guy to have a sport I could be involved on a team with."
But for other players on the team, it's the physicality of lacrosse that enticed them to join. "I like the hitting. When I first heard about it I thought it would be dumb but then I watched the video and I thought it seemed pretty cool," says sophomore Jake Lunceford.
Lunceford plays football for the Vikings along with teammate Joey McBride. McBride already feels the pain of lacrosse; on the first day of practice he took a cleet to the face and is now sporting a sweet battle scar. "I like the hitting," says McBride jokingly. "I got a 6 foot stick and I get to beat people with it, that sounds fun."
The team isn't quite ready to play a full game yet. They are still working on getting full pads, helmets and a goal that isn't made out of p.v.c. pipe! Coach Cochran is hoping to get the team game-ready by the end of the summer.