Interviews

Player, coach and/or alumni interviews

Meet A Freshy 

WPF and Rodger Lodge-yourself Publications is proud to bring you our very first "Meet a Freshy" with Henry Buonagurio a goalie from Duxbury, Mass. We asked "The Big Piece" Mark Manos to pick our very first interview and Henry is who he picked. I think it's safe to say Mark see's something in this keeper already. Enjoy!

 

Henry! First off welcome to the Drexel Lacrosse Family!

What was the most important part of your college decision making process in coming to Drexel?

The biggest selling point for me to come to Drexel was the coaches and the lacrosse atmosphere. All of the coaches especially coach Collins really impressed me with how they run this program.

So now you have been on campus for a week or so...what do you think of the atmosphere so far? Has there been any highlights to your stay? 

The atmosphere here is great it a very tight knit community, the biggest highlight of my stay so far is all of the great food choices here at Drexel, I am by no means limited to eating at the cafeteria everyday, like at most other universities.  

What dorm are you staying in and who is your roommate?

I am staying at Calhoun, with Mike McGregor

How is the process of adjusting to life down here in West Philly from Mass?

It has been a big change from growing up in small suburb of Massachusetts to living in such a large city. It has been a very smooth transition for me though

You started fall ball this week, how is it going so far?

It is going real well, it has been a lot of hard work, and a major lack of sleep though.

How tough has Coach V been with the conditioning up to this point? 

Conditioning has not been anything that I am not used to from playing lacrosse and football my whole life.

What is it like to have a true goalie coach on the field for Drexel in Coach Collins? 

Incredible, its awesome to be taught from a coach who has as much experience at the goalie position as Coach Collins. He teaches from his own experience playing goalie. 

What is it like to have someone like Coach Manos teaching you on a daily basis?

Just fantastic, Mark, being the best goalie to ever come through Drexel, can pass all of his knowledge down to the younger guys. He knows exactly what the other coaches expect from their goalies, and no one knows exactly what to do in every situation better then Mark.

What do you think of the level of play and the transition from Duxbury/Laxachussets high school ball?

It is definitely a huge leap in both responsibility, and game speed. I personally need to adjust to major jump in the speed of the game, at the D1 level.

We know that you have only been here for a short time and practicing even shorter, but what are your goals for your freshman campaign on the team?

To get better everyday. To lead the defensive unit, to become a leader of the team, and most importantly, eventually become a starter for the Drexel Dragons.

Thank you Henry and a huge WELCOME from the contingent at WPF and alumni across the world!

For further info check out http://phillylacrosse.com/2011/02/07/mens-recruit-drexel-lands-ace-junior-goalie-buonagurio-from-duxbury-mass/

Below is a Pre-Fallball interview of Senior Captain Chris Walsh conducted by WPF, with the help of 5th year Undergrad Asst. Dana Wilbur. Enjoy and Thanks Walshy!

Congratulations on being selected as captain for the 2012-2013 Dragons! What did it feel like when you found out you would be captain of the Drexel Dragons in the 2012-2013 year?

It was one of the best feelings I've had in my athletic career. Knowing that your peers voted you as a captain to lead the team is the most rewarding part about it. I never imagined this honor when I walked onto campus as a rook. It's going to be a challenge that I welcome with open arms.

What are the collective goals of the captains group?

Our goals are obviously to take this team and program to the NCAA's. That is the end all be all, and at the end of the day all we want to do is win any way we can. Another goal for me is to instill a hard working mentality in the under-classmen, that’s always been a trait of the captains that have lead this team. We are bringing in a bunch of young guys, so it's crucial that they know how to work hard, and the benefits of it. 

In terms of your play, what are your individual goals for this Fall and the Spring Season ahead?

My biggest goal and challenge is to work on my cover skills, I want to be a lockdown defender. I know I can run with anyone around, and I know the game and our system very well after having a few years to study them. I also realize I will be looked at as a vocal leader on the D end, and we will have a lot of young guys competing for spots. Getting the younger guys, and really a lot of our inexperienced guys comfortable is another important task this fall.

Coming off of such a great late season run last year what has been the focus of the Summer and early Fall for the team?

We are going to be a very different team with some key losses. I know a lot of guys have been working hard this Summer to be prepared to fill in those spots. The Fall will be crucial from a competition standpoint, because competition for positions generates the best results, that’s just a fact of life. I think bringing everybody up to speed with our systems offensively and defensively will be a major task because the amount of youth we are bringing in. 

Practice starts this tomorrow; What does your Fallball practice and scrimmage schedule look like? What do you feel is the most important piece to the Fall for the 2013 Drexel Dragons? 

Our fall ball will be about a month long, going from Tuesdays to Saturdays which has been the standard for a while. I believe we have our Drexel Playday October 20th, where we play our much hated neighbors the Quakers, and then we get a crack at Navy which I am really excited for. Also, not positive about the Alumni game but I think it is the night before that...and as always we are looking forward to running with you guys. I think Manos (Current 5th year - Undergrad Assistant) tells me every day he is going to score, in which case I am hanging up my gloves. 

What is the team's strongest point coming into this year? 

I think our offense will be the cornerstone for us, at least until our new look defense gets some games under it's belt. Getting Triz back is a dimension to our offense we definitely missed last year. I know Church and Glynn will have an excellent senior campaign too. We had some young guys step up last year which was nice because I think we can look to them to carry more of a load with some of our recent graduations at midfield. Being a D guy though, I am very confident that whoever is in there, can and will, get the job done for us. 

What is the team’s weakest point or shall we say, where have you lost the most? What is the plan for that group in your eyes as a captain?

It's no surprise we lose a lot on the defensive end, guys that have been an integral part of our team for the past 3+ years.  But honestly, I am not worried about replacing them, I am more excited to see some other guys step up. We have some great athletes coming up to help fill the shoes of Drew and Farqs at the D-Mid role. Losing three poles with the caliber of Dana, Teubs, and Frank is a blow, but there are guys that have been waiting for this day to come. Harrison, Hum-dog, Rooter, and a bunch of freshman will be chomping at the bit to play. Also, Dusek and Houch have been playing at a high level since they got here, so it's not like we are starting from scratch. There are numerous spots open, and this fall will be the most competitive since I've been here. 

Having played in front of Mark Manos for 4 years, what's it going to be like without him in cage?

I didn't mention Mark above because I saw this question, but again he is another tough guy to lose. Without going into accolades and tangible skills which most are aware of, his passion for the game is unmatched, and will be missed. It will definitely be weird for me at first when the firsts are out there and Mark's not in the cage, just because that's how it has always been for me. Mark did a hell of a job filling Bruce's shoes, and I know it is a lot to ask but we need a similar occurrence this year. There will definitely be a lot more net to shoot at, that’s for sure. 

Anything else you would like to say to WPF in terms of the Dragons 2013 Campaign?

As always, we thank you guys for your endless support! I assure you it's not unnoticed within our team, our parents, and other teams. We work hard out there for you guys, to leave this program in better shape than when we got it. Stay loud, stay proud, and see you guys October 19th for the Alumni game.  

Interview with Kyle Bergman 

West Philly's Finest was lucky enough to sit down with senior captain Kyle Bergman at an undisclosed location on Drexel's campus to get an interview.  Between Bergs' hectic class schedule, active twitter feed & some unfinished business on the field, we were lucky enough to capture some great insight from the player formerly known as Wild Man.  Thanks, Kyle

 

West Philly's Finest:    Kyle, first off, let’s talk about being a captain of this program.  A couple years ago the past captains were honored at half time and the group of guys that stood out there that day was as fine a group of guys that this University has produced, how did it feel to join that group and get a chance to lead your team this year?

Kyle Bergman: Being voted captain by my teammates was and is a great honor.  When I think about how it feels and what it means, the word responsibility keeps popping into my head.  Me and the other Captains, as well as the entire Senior class are responsible for not only leading the way and showing the young guys how things are done around here, but also for trying to bring this program to the next level.  When I first came here, we were almost there, and we’ve almost been there my entire career at Drexel.  Ultimately, as a Captain, my main priority is finally getting us there.  It’s no secret we didn’t capitalize on opportunities the first half of the season, but what I’ve told the guys is that the beautiful thing about our schedule and this game is that we can still accomplish something very special, and it starts with kicking the piss out of Hofstra

WPF:     Getting right to it, it’s been an up and down season so far and the squad has been on the wrong side of some tough 1 goal games, how does having such a big senior class of contributors help get the team through some of these tough times?

KB: We’re a glass half full type of senior class.  We know when you lose games by 1 goal; you can’t blame any one individual or specific unit.  We’re all upset after wins, but no one is pointing fingers, we’re doing the opposite. With a senior class that has contributed so much since we started playing, we all understand our roles and hold ourselves accountable.  Our main focus right now is to make other teams match our intensity, and to play consistent, hard lacrosse for 4 quarters.  

WPF:    Over the past couple season’s you have been torturing defenses as you attacked from the midfield, with Trizano missing most of the season so far you have been asked to carry some of the load from behind, what do you like and not like about playing behind, and how have you dealt with moving back and forth?

KB: Moving back and forth within the offense doesn’t bother me one bit. From an X’s and O’s standpoint, Coach Ford has done a good job of making me comfortable from various positions on the field. Although Bates recruited me as an attackman, it was pretty clear after red-shirting my freshman year I was more effective on the field coming in from the box.  I’m used to getting the pole as a midfielder (except unexpectedly at Seacrets) so that part wasn’t very different.  I’d say transition situations and the riding game are two areas I feel I can contribute most from the attack spot, but Trizano is our best two-handed ball carrier from behind, and our offense is simply more dangerous when we’re both on the field.  That being said, Andrew Vivian has done a great job stepping up as of late, and has brought some balance back to the offense. 

WPF:    It had to feel nice to get the win on Saturday, how do you think that helps things going forward and what excites you the most about CAA play?

KB: It felt great.  Getting that win was important for a couple different reasons. We knew going into conference play with a win the previous weekend would help boost our confidence tremendously, and that confidence in turn helps set the tone for practice this week.  One thing I’ve learned over my time here, getting after it in practices is crucial to our success.  At times this year we haven’t shown up in practice as a unit and it has translated to games.  Everyone now understands the importance of working hard against each other during the week so we can go hard against Hofstra.  

WPF:      How excited are you for hearing the WPF contingent getting all over the Pride next Saturday night?

KB: Can’t wait - the WPF contingent is like the obnoxious, loving, drunk older brother I never had. 

WPF:    So, your legendary flow got the axe this season, what was the thought process there.

KB: The inspiration for the flow was to stick it to the man, but ironically it was he who ultimately held the proverbial axe.  Job interviews, coupled with the fact I had reached the “locks for love” required cutoff length meant it was time.  I’ll miss the hippie chicks braiding my hair at electric factory concerts...the looks of fear and disgust from senior citizens...but mostly I’ll miss being called wild man and actually looking like a bonafide lunatic. 

WPF:    It’s been a long season so far, I’m sure there have been some great moments, how about you let us in on one.

KB:   We did freshman skits on the Mount St. Mary’s Trip this year and they were fantastic.  For those that aren’t familiar, ever since I’ve been here the freshmen have had to do a short comedy sketch basically giving them  a free pass to call out whoever they want affiliated with the program, albeit with some casual rules (no mothers, sisters, etc.).  My freshmen year for example I candidly recall having the entire team rolling with my impeccable sketchy Mac T impression.   For those that know him, after a few cocktails he has the tendency to look at girls the same way a dog looks at steak (love you Mac).  

Anyways, the routine this year was by far the shortest I’ve witnessed, but may have had the highest jokes per second ratio.  A clever setting reenacted a night at Cav’s and had various characters from our team approach freshman Nick Saputo who was dressed as a pretty little minx.  Notable hilarious moments involve a teammate and his ability to have bowel movements at the most inopportune times, a guy being called out for facebook creeping, the classic coach callout, and a hilarious portrayal of two teammates being joined at the hip.  All in all, it was a great show, even if it was a little short.  

WPF:    On behalf of all of us, good luck the rest of the way, we truly have your back!!

KB:  Thanks guys, we appreciate the love.  See you Saturday.

 

 

Word on the street is that Bolt Bus will be picking up WPF members Saturday morning from Hunkerbunker in Long Island and bringing them straight to West Philly to give the Flying Dutchmen an earful.  Hope to see you there as well and if not, we'll be keeping it real on twitter as always @WPFLACROSSE

 

 

GO DRAGONS!!!