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Lars' September letter

The sights, sounds and smell of Fall Term surround us here in Charlottesville.
Warm days are followed by cool evenings. The marching band can be heard off in
the distance, practicing for upcoming Saturday football games. Our students
are filing in and out of classrooms, dining halls and dormitories. And of
course, our men are on the practice field preparing for the 2018 spring season.
We conclude our initial 3-week skill session phase this Friday and will begin
the full team practices on Monday. The plan is to hold 22 practices over the
next six weeks. This will be the time period where we will focus on our big
picture team schemes. We recognize as a staff that we must improve our 6v6
defense, as well as take our 6v6 offensive production to the next level. Now
is the time we must make significant steps; there simply is not much time
allowed to work together from November to mid-January.

Tryouts have once again been a part of our Fall Term training sessions. We
have already made a first round of cuts, with another round coming up soon.
There are a few more spots available on the roster this year than had been
anticipated due to 2 incoming first-years deferring enrollment to the next
academic year and 3 fourth-years not being able to further compete due to
injuries. We have been pleased with the level of lacrosse skill and desire the
walk-ons have brought to our sessions, and we do anticipate several walk-ons
earning a spot with our program.

September 1 marked a new era in recruiting for college lacrosse. Though this
year’s opening day fireworks were muted due to the extensive number of verbal
commitments previously made, September 1 still had an exciting freshness to it.
We have initiated communication with several top HS junior prospects and
reconnected with other juniors our program had previously spoken with and
offered spots to. We are planning visits in each direction, both to Grounds
and to the prospect’s hometowns. We believe in the core of young men now
verbally committed to us in this HS class of 2019, but we need to continue to
add the best student-athletes to ensure the class is impactful.

The Charlottesville community is a safer one now due to recent town and
university efforts. But there is still much to be accomplished here. Some of
the men of our lacrosse program have been discussing options and ideas for how
to be helpful and supportive of others on Grounds and in the surrounding area.
More to come on this… And yes, there has certainly been change at the top
here in our athletic department. After 16 years as the Athletic Director,
Craig Littlepage announced he will be retiring later this year. Jon Oliver,
his right-hand man and Executive Associate Athletic Director, has stepped down
from his position as well. Both of these men guided the department since 2001
with 13 national titles won during their tenure (Dom and Men’s Lacrosse
earning 3 of those!!). The experience and expertise these two have will be
difficult to replace. Meanwhile, the university is preparing to name a
successor to President Teresa Sullivan soon. There certainly has been a great
deal of attention and change occurring here in Charlottesville.

Next Friday and Saturday Paul Hillenbrand, history buff and father of 3 UVa
alums, will be providing us a tailored lecture on Grounds and then a guided
battlefield tour at Gettysburg. The focus is on key attributes common to
successful combat units. Friday will not be motivational speaking. Rather it
will be academically grounded, visceral learning whereby our players are
engaged in the classroom with key historical information, themes common to
combat unit cohesion, and preparations for the next day's battlefield events.
On Saturday, due to Paul’s research and extensive planning of the tour, each
UVA player and coach will be able to associate himself with a unit whose
soldiers came from his home county and what they achieved at Gettysburg. From
Gettysburg, the men will return to Charlottesville while members of the
coaching staff drive to the US Lacrosse National Hall of Fame ceremony honoring
Doug Knight ’97.

Alumni Weekend is a month away! October 13 – 14. We will host the Alumni
vs. Varsity Game Friday Night and then honor the 2017 team on Saturday at Noon
out at Keswick, followed by golf.

Friday, October 13th

7:00 pm Alumni Game (Lower Turf)

10:00 pm Postgame Reception TBD for Alumni

Saturday, October 14th

12:00 pm Awards Banquet/ Luncheon with Alumni and Team @ Keswick

2:00 pm Tee Off at Keswick Hall & Golf Club

6:30 pm Post Golf Reception

Posted: 09/14/2017 at 4:44PM


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Current Thread:
Lars' September letter -- QuickStick 09/14/2017 4:44PM
  Who are the 3 injured, non-returning 4th years? ** -- vonmisian 09/14/2017 10:52PM
  Re: Who are the 3 injured, non-returning 4th years? -- TopshotHoo 09/15/2017 08:14AM
  Onemore posts on Laxpower ** -- CAV itee 09/15/2017 08:04AM
  Littlepage, Oliver & Sullivan - package deal. ** -- TopshotHoo 09/14/2017 6:02PM
  Re: Littlepage, Oliver & Sullivan - package deal. -- whoobastank 09/14/2017 7:34PM

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