Siena Heights University Adds Club Sport; Will Play Home Contests at Maple Stadium
Siena Heights University will begin a men’s club lacrosse program that will play its first matches in spring 2009 using Adrian High School’s Maple Stadium as its home field.
“Lacrosse is generally regarded as the fastest growing sport at the high school and collegiate levels,” said Siena Heights Athletic Director Fred Smith. “We know there are many existing club teams in Michigan, so that made our decision a little easier.”
Siena Heights is a member of the NAIA and the Wolverine Hoosier Athletic Conference and annually has more 270 student-athletes participating in its 15 NAIA sponsored programs. Currently the NAIA does not sponsor intercollegiate lacrosse, however, club associations administer themselves, including scheduling, officiating and athletic insurance. These organizations even have a national tournament, and the official season is in the spring and schedules range from 10-14 contests.
The men’s league that Siena Heights will apply to, the Central Collegiate Lacrosse Association, has more than two dozen schools divided up into Division 1 or 2 teams. Schools range from Western New York and Pennsylvania and West Virginia to Indiana, and there is even the opportunity to compete at a national tournament. There is currently a Division 2 league comprised of all Michigan schools.
Although Siena Heights currently does not have on-campus fields to host lacrosse matches, Siena and Adrian High School are finalizing an agreement for the Saints to use Maple Stadium for home matches.
“The Adrian Public Schools is excited to again partnership with Siena Heights University,” said Adrian Public Schools Superintendent Del Cochran. “With the introduction of lacrosse by Siena Heights, Maple Stadium will be the site for this fast growing and exciting sport. The continued collaboration between the Adrian Public Schools and Siena Heights University benefits both schools and the community.”
“We could not have made this decision without help from Adrian Public Schools,” Smith said of the stadium agreement. “This adds to our already strong relationship with Adrian Public Schools.”
Smith said the search for a head coach will begin immediately. The first student-athletes should arrive in fall 2008, and the first team could have a roster of 20-30 players.
“We are excited to bring lacrosse to campus,” said SHU President Sister Peg Albert, OP, PhD. “The addition of any program – athletic or academic – must be carefully planned. Fred Smith has done an outstanding job in his research. And collaborating with Adrian Public Schools only reinforces my belief that this is the right decision for Siena Heights University.”
For more information on lacrosse or any other athletic program at Siena Heights, please call 517-264-7870.