ST. LOUIS — The MICDS Rams (11-2) will face the De Smet Spartans (7-3) in one, if not the biggest, rematches of the boys’ lacrosse season on Friday night.
As a nationally ranked program, the MICDS varsity lacrosse team was 99-0 heading into its first 2021 regular season game against De Smet before suffering an 8-7 loss to the Spartans on April 13.
It was the first in-state loss MICDS suffered in more than seven years.
MICDS lacrosse coach Andy Kay said while the loss wasn’t one they wanted, it was a relief to watch the Rams learn, grow and rebound in the process.
“We’ve been able to put that loss aside and just get back to the business of having fun and being with each other,” Kay said. “We’re really looking forward to getting out there on Friday night to have another shot at those guys.”
After the loss to De Smet, the Rams won four straight.
“We’ve had a lot of young players step up this year, a lot of guys who are in unfamiliar roles,” Kay said. “We’ve been battling some injuries. But that’s kind of why it’s fun to coach high school sports. You work with your staff and you work with the kids to see if someone else can step up, and I think our guys have been doing that really since that loss.”
Kay said MICDS is heading into Friday night more prepared, with the mindset of simply playing to the team’s identity.
“Knowing that we might see De Smet again in the playoffs down the road will kind of keep our scout in our pocket,” Kay said. “We’re not gonna do a whole lot that’s unique, and I think we’re just gonna go out and get into a fight and see what we’ve got. Win or lose, we’ll learn from it, and we’ll put our cards on the table in the playoffs.”
Meanwhile, De Smet’s three losses this season have come from in-state teams including two against Chaminade and one against SLUH.
Spartans head coach Joe Douglas said part of the success is credited to the upperclassmen leadership.
“Effort has always been there,” Douglas said. “We’ve always worked really hard.”
Douglas added the biggest challenge for De Smet, like many teams, has been finding consistency through injuries and issues following a canceled 2020 season due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We’ve been a little bit inconsistent, if I’m being honest,” Douglas said. “But we always give it our best effort. We bring energy every single day, and our identity is to be smarter and to work on our decision-making and make good decisions and take care of the ball.”
Douglas said although De Smet beat MICDS one time this season, the Spartans will approach Friday night as a brand new team.
“We need to match their level of intensity,” Douglas said. “Again, play with a sense of urgency, and do our best to execute the game plan. If we can do that, we’ll be happy whether we win or lose. They’re fierce competitors. We need to match them on that.”
The game begins at 7 p.m. at De Smet Jesuit High School.