Boys lacrosse will kick off their hopeful back-to-back run soon


Photo courtesy of Barry Glassman

The WCHS boys lacrosse team poses with the trophy after winning the 2022 Maryland state championship.

By Justin Greenzaid, Sports Editor

Blood, sweat and tears. In 2022, the WCHS boys varsity lacrosse team poured their hearts and souls into winning the Maryland 4A State Championship. After years of WCHS lacrosse teams falling just short, the 2022 team set a precedent, as the first ever Montgomery County team to win a lacrosse state championship – girls or boys. Following up the grand accomplishment seems almost impossible, especially with the loss of roughly 20 seniors from last year. However, if there is any team that can push through this type of adversity, it would be the 2023 Bulldogs. 

The Bulldogs are losing a ton of key contributors including seven out of last year’s 10 starters as well as the All-Met player of the year, Eliot Dubick. The team looks upon seniors Reed Drummond, Justin Polhemus, Conor Farrell and Daniel Huck as well as juniors Taigh Merola, Xander Frey and Will Stanish to fill the roles of the past stars. While still returning 17 players from the championship-winning team, the Bulldogs know what it takes to win once again and have the experience to do so. 

Obviously losing everybody that graduated means the team looks a lot different this year, but I’m confident that we have players to step up and fill those roles on our team. I think the team will do great again this year and hopefully repeat all the achievements of last season,” Frey said. “My goals for the season are to win the region, county, and state again.”

The spring season officially begins on March 1, but the team has been preparing all year for their chance to repeat. The team has workouts in the fall and plays in a competitive league against some of the top private school competition in the area, while also practicing in the winter and playing in a few tournaments. Since the team practices as much as it does throughout the year, the players have a great sense of team chemistry. The team has even done bonding events such as bowling. Being able to communicate and work together on and off the field is important for any team that wants to be the best. 

“I think our team’s greatest strength this year will be our ability to stay composed no matter what happens on and off the field,” Drummond said. “Our team chemistry is through the roof. We all love to hang out with each other and especially love to step on the field to compete for a championship with one another.”

The team’s first official contest of the year is on March 21 against Damascus which serves as their season opener as well as their home opener. The team will face a tough Montgomery County foe, to cap off their regular season when they play the Sherwood Warriors. Overall, the Montgomery County opponents may not be much of a test for the Bulldogs, which will face serious competition if they end up playing Anne Arundel county’s Broadneck Bruins in the state playoffs. The Bulldogs defeated Broadneck in last year’s state championship but just as WCHS looks to repeat, Broadneck looks to avenge their loss against the Bulldogs.

The team will be led once again by head coach Jeff Fritz, who won his 300th game as the WCHS coach last year, an extraordinary accomplishment that no other current WCHS coach has under their belt. Fritz serves as a mentor for the entire team and preaches the importance of family, academics, and being a good person outside of lacrosse. Fritz has been a part of the team as long as anyone else and has been chasing the lucrative state title harder than anyone else. Now, he looks to get his second straight championship with a team filled with new faces. As one of the captains of the team, Drummond will do his best to get everyone on the same page to start the season. 

“I have one goal for the season. Win a state championship,” Drummond said. “I think this year’s team will do very well due to the fact that we have so many players that strive to be a better player every single day and are hungry for another state championship.” 

Only time will tell if the Bulldogs are able to pull off what many doubt can be done, winning back-to-back state championships as a Montgomery County team. For now, the only certainty is that they are going to continue to pour their blood, sweat and tears into winning another shiny championship ring. Doing so will not be easy, but with strong leadership and grit, the team has the components to accomplish the impossible. 

“Reflecting back on last year, I think our whole team learned that winning a state championship is not an easy task to complete. But, now we know what it takes and just how hard we have to work to make it all the way,” Drummond said.