Last week the UCSB Men’s Lacrosse team faced an important opponent in the SLC, University of Southern California. It was also their last home game of the regular season, so the stakes were high to perform in front of the home crowd.
The first half was all Gauchos, as Kai Welsh and Casey Mix each put two goals in the back of the net to start things off. Captain Michael Kerr ripped two goals as well before the half, and USC could not figure out how to slow down the Gauchos offense. The highlight of the first half came at the very end as time expired. Junior Joe Dejesus won a face-off with 4 seconds left, took a few steps, and chucked the ball from above the restraining line to score as the buzzer sounded!
In the second quarter, the Gauchos nearly doubled their score. There were 10 different goal scorers on the day, led by Casey Mix who had 4 goals and 2 assists. Michael Kerr had a day as well with his first hat trick of the season. USC gained some momentum in the final quarter of the game, but it was not enough to close in on the Gaucho’s lead. The game ended 18 to 11 Gauchos.
Getting the victory against USC was huge, as UCSB heads into the final game of their regular season against the Chapman Panthers. This is probably the most important game of the year for them, and the winner of the contest will be SLC North Division Champions.
The Chapman Panthers are the defending National Champions and are currently ranked #9 in the MCLA Coaches Poll. The Gauchos have been looking forward to this game all season and have worked exceedingly hard this week to get prepared for this matchup against Chapman. Head Coach Michael Allan says, “There’s a reason that we schedule Chapman on the last weekend of the regular season. This game usually has big playoff implications and is always an excellent challenge. We have been emphasizing competing consistently at a high level over the last few weeks. I’m excited to see us put the competitive spirit of our team on display this Saturday.”
The Gauchos will head down to Orange, CA this Saturday April 15th to play Chapman at 3:00pm. Be sure to stay tuned on all social media accounts for one of the most exciting games of the season for UCSB Men’s Lacrosse!