Two men’s lacrosse players played in and won the national title in the National Collegiate Box Series (NCBS) for the U.S. Box Lacrosse Association (USBOXLA).
Connor Ryan, senior defenseman, and Spencer Towne, sophomore attacker, represented the Rivermen and the Ohio Collegiate Box Lacrosse League (OCBLL) in the national box league championship in Huntington, California against the Bison of the Colorado Collegiate Box Lacrosse League (CCBLL) this summer.
The Bison won game one 14-12, but the Rivermen went on to win game two and three to win the title.
The OCBLL had its inaugural season only two years ago. Ryan played for the Rivermen and won the 2018 Ohio Cup.
“For me with box, I started playing to like learn how to be more physical, because I’ve always been a smaller player and box allowed me to like grow and learn to be more comfortable with being physical on the field,” Towne said.
The box league is very physical and very fast. These players were very passionate about lacrosse and wanted to win the national title.
“I would really be looking forward to taking these skills and abilities that I took from box here onto the field,” Ryan said. “The communication aspect, understanding how offensive dynamics work is really helping me, as a defenseman, get better.”
Recent expansions to the box league have included more states and regions, allowing for more competition and more dynamic play throughout the league.
There is overlap between the coaching staff as the four-year head coach for the Capital men’s lacrosse team, Dom Marzano, was an assistant coach for the Redwoods LC in the Professional Lacrosse League (PLL). Nat St. Laurent is the head coach for the Redwoods LC and Ohio Northern men’s lacrosse.
Ryan and Towne played on the same team as some students from Ohio Northern University and were able to make friends with them.
Marzano and St. Laurent were able to bring the Redwoods LC to the PLL Championship, but endured a heartbreaking loss to the Whipsnakes LC in overtime.
Bringing new experiences, knowledge, and strategies to the team, coach Marzano will be back to coach the Crusader team this spring.
The team is ready and looking forward to spring season. The team plays next Feb. 8 at home in an exhibition game against Oberlin College.