Unaffiliated

A Sport Missing at Lee’s Summit High School.

Unaffiliated

Ethan Flemings

Their sport can be rough when they get hit on the throat or someone slashes them but it is great time all the same. Besides they are going to high school and they could represent their school on the field. Their disappointment can hurt more than the injuries. Their sport is lacrosse which several students at LSHS play but not for their school.

¨It would be nice if I didn’t have to go somewhere else¨ Athlete Wyatt Hartenstein said. 

Hartenstein is a player on the Lee’s Summit United High School Boys Lacrosse Club. Hartenstein has enjoyed his time on the lacrosse team even though it is not affiliated with Lee’s Summit High School. Many other students have a similar desire to see lacrosse become an official sport or club at LSHS. Though some see benefits to the current situation.

¨Students from North are on the team too.¨ Troy Huffman said. ¨I do not think I would like a team with just LSHS kids as much.¨ 

In Missouri, lacrosse is categorized as an emerging sport which means that it is not officially recognized by the Missouri State High School Activities Association commonly known as MSHSAA. Lacrosse used to be a recognized activity at Lee’s Summit High School, but the lack of state recognition led to the team being disbanded.  This may all change soon, however. Professional organizations like the Premier Lacrosse League have been growing and this may drive up interest in the sport as a whole. More players would be a welcome change for many current lacrosse athletes who are frustrated by the limited number of opponents and teammates.

¨Not, a lot of people know about lacrosse, but it’s fast-paced and fun to learn.¨ Huffman said. 

Lacrosse doesn’t have the publicity of sports like football which could also lead to people making assumptions and having misconceptions about the sport that drives them away. All of the players seemed to share the opinion that lacrosse is fun and that more people should play it. 

Lacrosse has a long history dating back to the Native American tribes of eastern North America. During the 1800s the sport gained a great deal of popularity in Canada and quickly expanded into an internationally recognized sport. The sport didn’t take root in the United States as strongly as in other countries though as previously mentioned lacrosse has seen rapid growth in recent years.

Lacrosse is a game of sticks, nets, bruises, dislocations, concussions, and goals that can be off-putting to some but highly enjoyable to others. Recent data indicates that more people are finding the sport whether through friends or their parents. Perhaps one day lacrosse will graduate from an emerging sport and be fully recognized in Missouri. There may even be a day when lacrosse returns to Lee’s Summit High School.