PCHS boys’ lacrosse: Miners anticipating fresh start in 2012
For the Park City High School boys’ lacrosse team, the 2012 season represents a multitude of fresh starts.
First-year head coach Andy Langendorf — Park City’s defensive coordinator in 2011 — has taken over at the helm and implemented a new style of play for the Miners. Gone, he said, is the systematic and structured play Park City became known for, and instead is a fast-paced, free-flowing style of attack.
"I wanted to teach concept, more than actual plays," he said. "Lacrosse is a lot more fun to play when it’s a little bit more wide open and situational. From a player’s perspective, it’s a lot more fun. I wouldn’t call it run-and-gun, but more of an open system.
"Park City used to be far too predictable, because year in and year out we were doing the same thing. It was a little hard for the players to adapt after being so robotic on the field."
But if last weekend’s showing at the annual Best of the West lacrosse tournament in Las Vegas, Nev., is any indication on how the Miners are adapting, one could say they should be just fine.
Park City went 4-1 over the weekend, including wins over the defending state champions from Idaho and Nevada. The Miners’ lone loss came to rival Judge Memorial, 5-3.
Langendorf said he was impressed to see how his team fared under the new system, and reiterated that Park City doesn’t have much time to play around — the Miners kick off their 2012 season today, Wednesday, March 7, as they host the Highland Rams at 5 p.m. at Quinn’s Junction.
"We basically jump from Vegas into our season and play two games a week now until the end of April," he said. "There’s not a lot of time now for reflection."
Park City must replace a plethora of senior talent from 2011, which included Griffin Perkiel, Tyler Gaebe, Mark West, Joe Sisk, Alex Falten, Zev Dekoff, Parker DeGray and Connor Bevins.
But Langendorf said his team has ability this year and hopes the lack of depth doesn’t become an issue as the grueling season wears on.
"We don’t have a big roster," he said. "That’s always the struggle we have in Park City. It’s always hard to get kids from junior into JV and into varsity."
Park City will be led by senior captains Jake Gutman, Rufus Frost and Alec Roussos, along with goaltender Peter Hoburg.
"Rufus Frost is already establishing himself as a massively dominant player on the field," Langendorf said. "He’s got a lot of confidence and he’s playing well.
"One of the guys that people look past is Peter Hoburg. He really is the key for us. He is a very athletic, very talented lacrosse player. He stands between the pipes. When Peter is on his game, we have a very, very strong defensive core."
On the downside, Langendorf said the talented Alex Boyle may miss the entire season due to a concussion issue, and the Miners have been beset with a rash of early-season injuries, something Park City’s head coach hopes isn’t a trend.
Asked what his initial goals are in his first season as head coach at Park City, Langendorf said he hopes to use the regular season to his team’s advantage; to work hard in practice every day and keep developing as one.
"The regular season is the day-in and day-out work," he said. "My goal is to go beyond the first round of the playoffs.
"There’s peaks and valleys in lacrosse; you just don’t want your peaks to be too high and your valleys, too low. When you play as much lacrosse as we play, it’s got to be fun; it’s got to be interesting."
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A group of Park City residents on Monday night criticized the prospects of City Hall developing a workforce or otherwise affordable housing project in Old Town. The people at a Marsac Building event raised a range of issues.