The UVM men’s lacrosse team has announced their captains for the upcoming season.
The team anticipates a stronger and more cohesive season, which begins in February.
The team gave the most votes for senior midfielder Ian MacKay and senior defender James Leary to captain again. Last season, the team had five captains, including MacKay and Leary.
The reduction from five captains to two will help everyone get on the same page easier, MacKay said.
Head coach Chris Feifs said he supports this pick because of MacKay’s and Leary’s potential, and what they can bring to the team next season.
“[Leary and MacKay] have both been leaders essentially their entire career at UVM,” Feifs said. “They’d do anything for their teammates and are selfless individuals who play hard consistently.”
This aligns with the goals that Feifs has for the team next season. Developing a stronger culture with the program and creating more accountability are key to have better success next season, Feifs said.
In addition to their implementation of a stronger team dynamic, MacKay and Leary’s leadership next season will benefit the team’s skills, Feifs said.
“Last year we had three defensive captains so the balance of offensive and defensive leadership wasn’t there,” Feifs said. “So now having one guy at each position and each having one voice is going to help us be more efficient.”
Improvements can be made all over the field offensively and defensively, which this new leadership balance has started to address in the off season.
The team worked on stick work and building team chemistry in the fall, and they want to continue building that chemistry and start implementing some of the stick work systems in the spring, MacKay said.
“The offseason will be crucial for us going home for winter break and being sure we maintain all the gains that we made this fall,” Feifs said.
The team played a home scrimmage and two away games at Union College in the fall, according to UVM athletics.
Both Feifs and MacKay said that “it’s not always about what you say but how you say it,” when it comes to leadership.
“Leadership is not always leading by example,” Feifs said. “Sometimes you need to be vocal and be comfortable with confrontation. Both Leary and MacKay aren’t afraid to say stuff and congratulate their teammates on their successes.”
MacKay also elaborated on the importance of communication both on and off the field and how this should be more prevalent this season.
“I’ve always considered myself as someone who leads by example on the field by the way I play bringing energy and effort every day,” MacKay said. “Having said that, one thing I want to work on is becoming a more vocal leader on and off the field.”
The first game of the season is 6 p.m. Feb. 1 at Furman University. The first home game of the season is Mar. 10 against Sacred Heart University.