Friday, July 2, 2010

Iroquois Pay Back at the 1990 Lacrosse World Cup, Part I

Top row: Emmett Printup in the hat, state government official, Travis Solomon, Mark "Red Man" Burham with the stash, and Brad Kotz (Lacrosse Hall of Fame). Bottom row: Chief Oren Lyons (Lacrosse Hall of Fame) who was a goalie on the same undefeated SU team with Jim Brown(Lacrosse Hall of Fame) and my coach Roy Simmons Jr. (Lacrosse Hall of Fame). Everybody in the picture is a SU lacrosse alum, yes that's a baby faced Gary Gait (Lacrosse Hall of Fame) just two months after his senior year and another Syracuse lacrosse national championship.  
During the 1990 Lacrosse World Cup I played in for the United States, each time was permitted to dress about 23 players each game. Our roster had 27 players I believe. With really bad tendinitis in my knees, (one of the reasons why I stopped players after 1993) I volunteered to sit out the game after we played and beat the Aussies. Little did I know what a savvy decision that one was; we played the Iroquois Nationals in the next game and they had a serious bone to pick with Team USA in their first appearance in a Lacrosse World Cup. My Syracuse teammates Emmett Printup and Mark Burnham played for the Iroquois along with Travis Solomon. They and their Iroquois teammates warmed up with serious game faces and a notable silence, something was up. The defensemen on the Iroquois team used the all wooden hand made traditional sticks. Those sticks are heavy and when you get hit buy one they make serious welts, they can break open your skin, and they can break bones. After the first faceoff and a lumber jack like check that made the crowd gasp when they heard the loud whack of traditional wooden stick, I could tell this was going to be a game unlike any my 26 white teammates and I had seen before. More tomorrow.

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