If a new high school is going to start a lacrosse program, there are few better places in South Carolina to do so than in Mount Pleasant, a hotbed for the sport on the club level.
So it made sense that Lucy Beckham High included lacrosse to its initial list of athletic teams for the 2020-21 school year. And, early returns say the decision was a good one.
The boys and girls lacrosse teams at the Class AAAA school have each won a region championship in their first season, doing so with rosters comprised of sophomores and freshmen. The school does not have junior or senior classes this year.
A handful of players on the rosters have previous junior varsity experience in the highly successful program at Wando High School. But the club and travel circuit in the area is flourishing and players are gaining valuable experience at those levels.
Still, not every player on the roster was an accomplished player when practices began in February.
“We had some guys who have grown up in the sport and certainly had a good background in the sport, but we also had some who had never held a stick before,” boys coach Parker Ferrigan said. “It was a mixture of kids really and we had to do a lot of teaching and learning. It’s really good to see how this team has developed and gelled over the course of the season. They have responded very well to coaching.”
The boys team is 11-1 in regular-season matches and won the Region 7-AAAA title with an 8-0 record. Among the leaders on the team are sophomores Grant Bushey (21 goals, 13 assists), Chad Weis (19 goals, six assists) and Jake Leland (18 goals, seven assists). Freshman Web Perry has added 18 goals and four assists.
“Those four are definitely the core of the offense,” Ferrigan said.
The girls team has yet to lose this spring, winning all 10 contests, including seven in region play. Sophomores Kayla Fergus and Anne Edens each have scored 48 goals this season, while sophomore Avery Hull has scored 28 goals. The Bengals have outscored their opponents, 176-26.
Both teams look to contend for state championships in Class AAAA. The state playoffs begin April 21.
Ahead of the playoffs, both squads will play Porter-Gaud in a doubleheader at Lucy Beckham on April 14. The boys matchup offers a unique story in that the contest will feature five sets of brothers from the two teams. All are members of the Charleston Elite club organization and play as teammates during the summer.
Lucy Beckham’s brothers include Connor and Garrett Coombs, and Chad and Ryan Weis. At Porter-Gaud, brother tandems are Lawson and Marshall Pritchett, Will and Thomas Kanich, and Charles and Jay Busto.
“It’s really a neat thing,” Ferrigan said. “These guys all play together when they aren’t playing for their schools. It’s a really close-knit lacrosse community and playing Wednesday will be a lot of fun for everyone.”
Berkeley softball wins tourney title
Berkeley’s softball team won the Palmetto Invitational Tournament championship over the weekend in North Charleston. The Stags went 4-1 in the event and defeated Stratford, 16-9, in the championship game of the gold bracket. Berkeley defeated Summerville in the semifinal game. Summerville defeated Colleton County for third-place.
Cane Bay captured the silver bracket championship with a 4-3 win over Fort Dorchester and Hanahan topped Timberland in bronze bracket finals. There were 12 teams in the field.