Lacrosse sends seniors off with victory on Senior Night

Senior Ethan Krase was emotional after Friday night’s game against the Viewpoint Patriots. His Malibu Sharks had just won, 15-9, on Senior Night, and it was the last time he’d play lacrosse for Malibu High School.

“It’s very emotional for me,” Krase said. “I’m a senior. I played all four years of my lacrosse career up here. It means a lot to win our last game.”

It was the final game of the year for the Sharks, and the victory put their overall record at 4-8.

Finn Gesner led the team with four goals, while Alex Averna and Winston Churchill each chipped in two. Kenny Averna had four assists, and Noah Gorelick picked up eight ground balls.

Malibu started the game strong, scoring goals with reckless abandon. The second goal of the first quarter came when Churchill ran down the right side of the field, beating all the defenders in front of him and bouncing the ball off the floor for a goal.

The Sharks ended the quarter with a 7-1 lead.

“A lot of selfless offense,” said Churchill, who will be attending San Diego State University next year. “Just trying to get your teammates to score, helping them out and not just trying to take it by yourself the whole time. It was really helpful.”

The Patriots were more aggressive on offense in the second quarter, going on a 4-1 run to cut their deficit to only three at halftime. Malibu’s crisp passing and sharp decision-making weren’t present in the quarter, which led to them only scoring one goal.

The Sharks offense began clicking again in the third, scoring three points in the first three minutes of the frame. In one play, the ball zipped beautifully between four players and culminated in a goal.

Coach Mark DeOliveira said the team implemented a new scheme in practice to deal with the Patriots’ zone defense.

“The kids were not selfish on the field,” DeOliveira said. “They were looking for their next pass to their teammate. When you do that, it opens everything up, especially against a zone.”

Malibu’s defense stifled Viewpoint’s offense for much of the night. The Patriots’ goals for the most part came several minutes apart.

“Just as we play team offense, we play team defense very well,” DeOliveira said. “We communicated very well. We remembered their personnel from last time, so we kind of knew their go-to players. We knew what they kind of wanted to do, and we executed well as a unit.”

DeOliveira said it was a good feeling for the team to win in front of the fans at the high school.

“To do it in front of the home crowd, under the lights, for the seniors —which comprised the majority of our team — was great to see,” DeOlivera said.

Even though it was the last game of the year for Krase, he will have fond memories of his time at Malibu High School.

“I’ll always be a Malibu Shark,” he said.