By Chris Goldberg
Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 10/11/11
The last time John Haldy had played an organized lacrosse game, he was standing at the center of Baltimore’s M&T Bank Stadium hoisting the NCAA championship trophy as a senior co-captain for the Virginia Cavaliers.
That Memorial Day title game victory over Maryland is several months in the past now, but the Haverford School grad said he relives that amazing journey each day.
Today at Radnor High, Haldy got his first chance at playing in the LXM PRO 610 tour, helping the East (Team Cascade) topple the West (STX), 15-13. The setting was different, but the competition was again quite fierce and the thrill of playing lacrosse was not lost on Haldy.
“It was a lot of fun – the game moves pretty fast,” said Haldy, a middie. “There are some big-time athletes out here. I got asked to play two weeks ago and I jumped on the call and I had a lot of fun with it.
Haldy, now working in the business world in Philadelphia, said he can’t help but think about Virginia’s amazing run to its first national title since 2006.
“I need to remind myself at least one time a day it actually happened,” he said. “It’s definitely still setting in every day.
“It was quite an accomplishment. I went down two weeks ago to the Governor’s Mansion, and seeing all the faces is something I’ll take with me all the rest of my life. We formed a great bond with the guys; I had the time of my life down there.”
Haldy noted that the Cavaliers were not expected to even make the Final Four after losing four out of five games at the end of the year and enduring some internal team problems. But the Cavs regrouped for the playoffs and after rallying to defeat Bucknell, 13-12., in the first round they knocked off Cornell, 13-9, to reach the semifinals and then Denver, 14-8.
“I would say with a lot of confidence that this team was the hardest practicing team in my four years,” Haldy said. “We weren’t getting the breaks when we lost those four out of five games and we were working too hard not to reap the benefits.
“To the credit of the guys in the locker room and the coaches we didn’t give up. When it came time for the playoffs, we were like, ‘Alright, let’s make something happen.
“Once we got by the first game, that’s when you saw the emergence of Steele Stanwick. Once we got to that point, we knew we could make a run at it.”
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