ST. AUGUSTINE—The Flagler College men’s lacrosse team is ready to hit the ground running in its inaugural season.
The seven-year club team on the campus of Flagler College has made the jump to the NCAA Division II level and welcomes new faces to join the original core of club players to help shape the program’s varsity identity.
Two of the team’s captains, transfers Ty Tom and Thomas Pritchard will lead the Saints’ offensive attack. Tom, who comes to Flagler from Belmont Abbey College and Pritchard who comes from Saint Leo University, will provide this young team with much-needed experience at the college level as well as filling key leadership roles for head coach Brian Duncan.
Two other members of the offensive attack, who will play key roles, will be newcomers Willy Bateman and Drew Flagg. Flagg, a lefty out of Belleview, Florida, comes to the program following a 102-goal season in his senior year, which earned him all-state honors.
The midfield will be anchored by a healthy mix of newcomers and club returners. Tanner Sims was a member of the club team last year and now his dodging abilities will be invaluable to the young program. Joe Beville, one of five transfers from Howard Community College to come to Flagler, will be joined by Limestone University transfer Robert Ernst.
Tyler Douglass and Aaron Habisch represent the first-year contingent, who will be active in the Saints’ midfield. Habisch brings great shooting abilities, while Douglass was a state champion alongside fellow Saint Ben Byrne.
On defense, captain Paxton Crowell will lead the way. Crowell came to Flagler as a goalie, but was able to successfully make the transition to long stick midfielder. Crowell will be joined by fellow captain Logan Patrick, who led his high school team to a district title.
Rounding out the defense is a pair of freshmen, Asher Campbell-Westbrook and Dom Trager. Trager comes to the Ancient City from Hilliard, Ohio, while Campbell-Westbrook, a Pedro Menendez High School product, chose to stay at home.
The faceoff circle will be manned by the final captain in this inaugural season, Jake Griffin. Griffin is another member of the Howard CC contingent, will be joined by another club returner in Matt Mitrega.
In net, Tim Russell and Nate Lehr will both see time on the field for the Saints. Russell, another member of the Howard CC group, had a 71.4 save percentage in two games in 2020 before the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. Lehr, a native of Chenango Bridge, N.Y., comes to Flagler after beginning his collegiate career at Limestone with Ernst.
This core group of student-athletes will lead the Saints on the field for the first time on Friday, Feb. 4 when they travel to Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University for a 7 p.m. match.
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