May 10, 2017

Fake Helps Hun Boys’ Lacrosse Fight to the End As Raiders Fall to Lawrenceville in Prep A Final

STICKING WITH IT: Hun School boys’ lacrosse player Chris Fake, right, stymies a foe in a 2016 game. Last Monday, senior star defender and Yale-bound Fake fought hard in a losing cause as second-seeded Hun fell 11-5 to top-seeded Lawrenceville in the state Prep A title game. The Raiders, now 6-6, play at Mercersburg Academy (Pa.) on May 13 before starting play in the prestigious Inter-Ac Invitational. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

Chris Fake and his teammates on the Hun School boys’ lacrosse team faced a major challenge when they played at Lawrenceville in the state Prep A final last Monday evening.

Hun lost 17-10 to Lawrenceville in early April and knew it wouldn’t be easy to flip the script in the title rematch with the talented Big Red.

“We just wanted to come out with a different pace,” said senior star defender and Yale-bound Fake.

“We wanted to come out faster, more prepared for them. They are a great team and it was difficult.”

The Raiders made things difficult on Lawrenceville in the first half as they trailed just 4-1 at halftime.

“Gib (goalie Gib Versfeld) played amazing, we were trying to stick to the fundamentals,” said Fake, in assessing Hun’s first half effort.

Over the rest of the game, however, Hun had trouble sticking with Lawrenceville, falling behind 7-1 midway through the third quarter on the way to an 11-5 defeat.

“We fought with them and what happened, happened,” said Fake. “We kept fighting, we never lost hope. We refused to quit.”

While the loss dropped the Raiders to 6-6, Fake believes the team has made big strides this spring.

“I feel like this team has grown a great amount, not only as lacrosse players but as a family,” said Fake. “We have gotten so much tighter. We love each other.”

As a tri-captain of the squad along with fellow seniors John Salcedo and Versfeld, Fake has worked to create that family atmosphere.

“It is easy to be a captain with these guys; it is like every one of these guys are captains,” asserted Fake. “We just get together so well and everyone is a leader on this team.”

Things have come together for Fake off the field at Hun as he is headed to Yale where he will be playing for its men’s lax program.

“As I went through high school, I started to really focus on my academics and I saw Yale as a great opportunity for me,” said Fake.

“Not only have the teachers and the kids at school helped me, coach (MV) Whitlow has helped me exponentially through the high school years, as a player, a person, and a student.”

Hun head coach Whitlow credits Fake with setting a great example for his teammates.

“Chris Fake is more of an influence culturally, just like Owen and Brendan Black were before,” said Whitlow.

“He is a Hun guy. If we need to hang our hat on somebody it would be Chris Fake, I think he is a great role model. He is  great student and he is heading to Yale. He is a very, very good lacrosse player but his strengths are off the field as well in the classroom. He is a great person.”

Although Hun fell short against Lawrenceville in the title  game, Whitlow praised his players for producing a very good effort.

“We have a lot of respect for them and their players, we felt like we were in the game early but we didn’t shoot well,” said Whitlow, who got two goals and an assist from freshman Trevor Deubner with senior Andrew Kaye and Salcedo each chipping in a goal and an assist and goalie Versfeld making 13 saves.

“We felt like we were composed, we felt like we gave a great effort. They outshot us. It really came down to shooting. The face-off X was pretty even and we liked our goalie play. We just didn’t like our shooting.”

Whitlow liked how his players kept their composure as things went against them last Monday.

“I am proud of my guys, this is a great group of young men and good student-athletes,” said Whitlow.

“They handled themselves beautifully on the field. It is a nice way to play in a game like that. The game didn’t get chippy and I thought the sportsmanship was at a high level. We got ourselves in a hole 7-1 but then we made a little bit of a run in the fourth quarter so we are proud of that.”

Hun will be looking to take things to a higher level as it plays at Mercersburg Academy (Pa.) on May 13 and then wraps up the season by competing in the prestigious Inter-Ac Invitational.

“I think we have evolved, if you have looked at the scores, our scores have gotten better,” said Whitlow.

“We want to do better today, big games are big games. When you are starting five underclassmen like we are, they are not always ready for those big game moment under the lights here. We felt like we executed; we just didn’t shoot very well.”

In Fake’s view, the Raiders will need to focus on better execution to make a big run in the Inter-Ac.

“We have just got to take what we didn’t do well tonight,” said Fake. “We didn’t shoot well; we messed up on defense at times. We just have to learn from that and take it into the Inter-Ac.”