Stetson Lacrosse Inaugural Season Opens This Weekend

"When you have a larger roster, you are able to send lines out, especially in the midfield, but with a smaller roster like we have, we won't be able to do that," Moore said. "Our style of play will need to be a more settled. Obviously, if the fast break is there, we will go for it, but we need to be smart with our opportunities and make sure that we are careful with our substitutions in order to keep the freshest legs out there."

The players on the field will not be the only members of the Stetson lacrosse program who will be experiencing the game in an entirely new way this year. Moore will be a head coach for the first time and Dipper will be experiencing the game from the sideline for the first time.

"The challenge is that now I will have to make decisions on the fly much quicker than when I was an assistant coach," Moore said. "I am the leader of this program and it is important that the things I put out there are the things that we will follow, whether we are winning or losing. My time as an assistant prepared me for this and I feel confident. I know that I am going to lead this program with heart and integrity and I hope that our players will follow that example."

The Hatters will have the advantage of playing 10 home games during the 2013 season and will jump right in as a member of the Atlantic Sun Conference. Stetson was picked to finish tied for second with Detroit in the preseason poll.

"This year will be interesting in the A-Sun," Moore said. "You have three programs that have played against each other for the last couple of years in the NLC and then the newcomers with us and Kennesaw State. Preseason polls are preseason polls. I think you will see a lot of competition in this league.

"I think it is a huge advantage to have a lot of home games. Only having had about four months to put the schedule together, I feel blessed that we were able to get 10 home games in our first season. The main thing is that our kids won't have to miss a lot of class. Our kids will be able to get into a routine and that should give us somewhat of a home field advantage."

The regular season schedule opens with seven consecutive home games before a trip to Gainesville for a showdown with the Florida Gators, which was a Final Four team last year. Another home match will be followed by a trip to California for a pair of games before the start of A-Sun play. The Hatters will close the year with four consecutive league games before the A-Sun Tournament in late April.

But, the focus for now is getting ready for a tough match-up in the exhibition game this Saturday.

"I am really glad that we were able to pick up this game because it will give us some great game competition before we go into the season, but also because it will be a great experience for the team," Moore said. "We will try to let them know what to expect and what the game will be like.

"There will be some great caliber teams there and this will be a great opportunity for us to share that stage. This game will be about us. It won't matter what the score is, it is all about getting our team prepared for our first game, against Liberty."

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2013-01-24



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