When it was all said and done, the Milton Keynes men’s team finished 6th in SEMLA East Division 2 this season. The table below highlights how competitive East Div 2 was with 3rd to 8th separated by only 6 points (and it’s 4 points for a win in SEMLA).
What are the main takeaways for Milton Keynes this season?
We survived our 3rd league season
That’s worth celebrating! Given we are a team of mostly novice players, many of which did not play lacrosse at university, we competed well this season. It was only Brighton (at their place) and London Uni who inflicted beat-downs on us. All other games were fairly close.
The win against Brighton in March was massive
Following a terrible run of lost games between December and February, the win against eventual division champions, Brighton, in March was massive. Yes, Brighton did travel to us with a slightly weakened squad, and we did put out one of our strongest squads of the season. However you still need to perform to win a lacrosse game. That win made us mathematically safe from relegation, which was very fortunate as we lost against Cambridge in the last game of the season by a single, very late goal.
We got lucky with some teams unable to fulfil their games against us
There is no denying we did get lucky when Cambridge could not field a team for their home game back in November. We’d of been confident of winning that game anyway with the squad we had available but a default win, and the lost losing points for Cambridge, was a bonus. The other game that was conceded was at home to Buckhurst Hill. If their usual squad had been able to play this would of been a tough game to win. If Buckhurst Hill didn’t have had some player availability issues during the second half the season, they would of been battling for 2nd spot and promotion to East Division 1 next season. Alas Chichester withdrew from the league so all their games were walk-over wins. However as consolation we did play Spencer 4’s in a friendly which helped us get back to winning ways.
We need to score more goals
If you take away the three 10-0 conceded games, we only scored 102 goals this season, at an average of 6.8 per game. We need to be pushing for 10+ goals per game next season. There is an unwritten rule in lacrosse that if you score 12+ you should win the game. Likewise concede <8 and you should win the game. Not only did we not score enough, we did not take enough shots. Over the summer we need to work on creating shooting chances. More shots = more goals.
We need to continue to promote lacrosse in & around Milton Keynes and grow the club
Milton Keynes is one of the few SEMLA clubs without a local lacrosse-playing university to provide an annual stream of new players. Our growth and future success totally depends on finding ways to promote lacrosse to the local community. We need to target the 16-25 year male demographic. We need to find ways to market lacrosse to the numerous 6th form colleges in MK, not necessarily for them to start playing the sport, but to give their students the opportunity to play the best team sport on the planet.