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The Virtual Hub for the Media of the The Benjamin School's Upper School

The Pharcyte

The Virtual Hub for the Media of the The Benjamin School's Upper School

The Pharcyte

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Could the Varsity Boys Lacrosse Team Bring Back a State Title to Buccaneer Way?

The+Boys+Lacrosse+team+poses+for+their+official+team+photo+before+their+game+against+Pine+Crest+on+February+16th.
Erika Sousa
The Boys Lacrosse team poses for their official team photo before their game against Pine Crest on February 16th.

The Benjamin School’s Varsity Boys’ Lacrosse team has been good for a while. They have consistently been in the top 25 in Florida for the past ten years and peaked in the top 30 (#29) during the 2022 season. As of March 7th, The Benjamin School is ranked #7 in the nation and #6 in the state of Florida, according to MaxPreps. The team has started 6-1 this year, already beating their rivals on the road at Jupiter High School (11-7) and only losing to St. Andrews (10-16) who are consistently at the top of the Florida and national rankings.

The Bucs are led by Navy commit junior Alex Ponchock, sophomore Jake Ivancevic, and freshman Jack Kelleher. Although the Bucs have started off hot, they are missing some key players due to injury including junior Caden Hayes who tore his ACL in an 11-7 win against Jupiter. 

Head Coach Peter Cordrey, Jack Kelleher, and Alex Ponchock talk about the injuries the team has dealt with and how it has affected them.

“We have lost many to injury. We have a next-man-up philosophy. No matter where you are on the depth chart, you have to prepare. Be ready, you never know when you will be called,” said Coach Cordrey.

“It’s definitely a lot harder with people out because new people have to step up and play a new role with a lot more pressure,” said Kelleher. “But I know all of us as a team will play outstanding no matter who is on the field.”

“It is tough having a lot of our big players out for the season with injuries. Luckily we have great younger players who have already shown that they can compete with some of the best teams in the state,” said Ponchock. 

Kelleher also expands on what it is like being a freshman starter on the team despite it being his second year as part of the squad.

“It’s much different than any other freshman because I have a year of experience under my belt, unlike the other freshman. It’s such an advantage especially during the big games because I know what I have to do and how to do it,” Kelleher added. 

Kelleher was the only 8th grader on the varsity team last year and Coach Cordrey expands on why. “We don’t bring up 8th graders unless we feel they will start. We didn’t have a left-handed attackman returning from 2022, so we pulled him up,” said Cordrey. 

Coach Cordrey shows discipline to the team by having very simple and strong team goals. “Our goals are simple and unchanged year-to-year. To get better as a team every day. To be selfless (TBS or Team Before Self), to display great character, and to develop mental toughness,” mentioned Coach Cordey. 

The big goal for all sports teams going into the season is obviously to win states. Kelleher and Ponchock could not agree more. 

“As a team, I hope we go on to win the state championship especially because we got cut short last year of making the trip to Naples,” said Kelleher. 

“A team goal of mine and my teammates is to win a state championship,” said Ponchock. 

As one of the top players Ponchock also has individual goals for the season. “One of my personal goals is to become a better outside shooter and feeder,” Ponchock added.

The boys on this team this year look very well-rounded and we hope to possibly see them make a deep run in the FHSAA district, regional, and state playoffs. The Bucs next game is on Friday, March 8th against St. John Paul Academy II. 

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About the Contributor
Ryan Chait, Breaking News Director
Ryan Chait is a freshman in his second semester at the Pharcyte. Ryan has been at Benjamin since 6th grade and was one of the editors for the Neercyde in middle school. He is a member of the boys varsity tennis team. He enjoys spending time with his friends, family and watching sports. Ryan is excited to continue writing for the Pharcyte.

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