Lucas Walsh bleeds green and white
A senior in his third season with the Nichols Vikings varsity lacrosse team, Walsh has done more than make his mark as one of his teams top offensive weapons.
He's made his mark as a captain. The kind of captain who sets the tone with his actions as well as his words. And who always puts the greater good of the team ahead of his individual wants and needs.
"Overall this season has been great for me and all of my teammates," Walsh said. "I think everyone has really enjoyed it."
Also the captain for the soccer and hockey teams this season, Walsh is drawing from the unique dynamic of the struggles the soccer team had and the success hockey saw. Walsh said the blend of the good and bad that he experienced in those two sports has shaped him into the captain he has been for lacrosse.
"I think it goes hand-in-hand with soccer and being captain of hockey also," he said. "I really learned in those two sports, I think soccer more. We were very competitive but we didn't win a lot and I had to find a
way to reach out to my teammates. I think it was by example in the locker room before the game. Just getting everyone focused and having a positive attitude...I just think leading by example and having a positive voice for the younger guys goes a long way."
But Walsh's voice in the room and on the field goes beyond the call of duty. It's more than being positive.
Lucas Walsh has gone to extensive lengths to speak with adults that he holds a great deal of respect for and routinely picks their brains for advice on how to be a thoughtful leader.
"He has gone out of his way to talk to teachers, coaches, his advisers (asking) what do I say in this situation? How do I approach a teammate who is struggling? What do I say?" Coach Tom Franz said. "Lucas, in a very conscientious way, in addition to all of his effort, which is suburb, has become one of my best captains every. And it's not something that was necessarily innate. He actually deserves the credit for thinking about other people and thinking about how to get the best from them. And he went out of his way to talk to adults around campus."
Teammate Liam Ryan said that the respectful way Lucas Walsh speaks to the guys, either as a team or in one-on-one situations, not only makes them respect Walsh, it makes them want to earn Walsh's respect on and off the field.
"He'll come up to you during a game if you're having a tough game and he'll just talk to you," Ryan said.
"He's just not the kind of kid you want to disappoint. He's always straight forward, never demeaning, he never puts you down. You want to perform for him. He makes you have pride in our team, we have pride in
our players because of him. He's just not the kind of guy you do not want to disappoint."
Calling Walsh a very competitive young man, coach Franz said that team success is critical to Walsh. And while he's been able to rack up points Walsh is fast to say his success is the byproduct of everyone's hard work.
"Greg White, I couldn't be more impressed with the kid right now," Walsh said with a smile. "He's a sophomore he's really stepping up. And Sean Malone, all though he has been healthy, he's just an unbelievable athlete. Those two have been a big part of our offense, along with me I guess, and Zach Cole's doing a great job."
On May 5, Walsh netted his 100th career goal, joining assistant coach W. Michael White and his sons, Mike and Chris, in the prestigious club of four players with 100 goals.
But what really made Walsh proud wasn't hitting that 100 goal plateau, but the fact that from time to time his name will be mentioned in the same breath as the White's, who could arguably be called the first family of Nichols lacrosse.
The true measure of Walsh's impact and influence is evident by the fact they were far more excited for Walsh than he was for himself.
"In my opinion you can't say enough good things about Lucas Walsh as far as the relationships he's developed with other players," Franz said. "There's kids that will make announcements during the school day, and they won't talk about themselves. They'll talk about Lucas. When he scored his 100th goal it was
Zach Cole that walked up in front of the school and said Lucas scored his 100th goal. Because Lucas doing it, is important to Zach. Lucas has been able to create that kind of feeling in our locker room and out on the field for us. He's loved. He really is."
Yes he is, and with good reason.