Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Intangibles Propelled Huskers To 2014 State Championship

This Yorktown team was not the most talented team in program history.

Not in the same zip code as dynasties and All American-laden lineups of previous generations, memorable and unrivaled bomb squads that Yorktowns old-timers will school you on the principles of. 

In the NCAA launchpad of Yorktown, where being crafty with the lacrosse stick is akin to being military-minded in Sparta, there have been countless legends and all-empowering playmakers with longer  pedigrees and inflated statistics and national fanfare. There have been better teams with bigger threats on both sides of the field, tougher schedules, and monumental victories. 

What the 2014 Huskers did possess, however, was a unique and seemingly un-eclipsiple level of immeasurable intangibles.

You can use myriad instruments to gauge an athlete's shot speed, 40-meter dash time, goals against average, efficiency with shot selection and so forth. 

You can never, however, truly compute one's heart the way you can other categories on the stat sheet. 

Dave Marr and the Huskers' slew of assistants orchestrated a 12-month program, one free of the politics that tends to rear its ugly head in programs throughout the Westchester landscape.

 The Huskers' locker room was completely devoid of ego. Individual totals were meaningless to this core.

Issues such as who gets the most touches and who has the ball during highly-pressurized situations were non-existent. The Huskers sacrificed and surrendered individual aspirations for the betterment of the team. They also played before a wild and gung-ho following, devout fans who displayed the "Unconditional Love" that the Rangers so desire right now. 

Think of the 2004 Los Angeles Lakers or the 2003 New York Yankees. Both teams had a natural beast of a roster, saturated with star power and high-priced, highly sought-after players. It was powerhouse material, yet the building blocks for success never came into fruition.

The best team on paper is exactly what it sounds like.

Did those two teams possess the selflessness, the we-before-me approach of a winner?

 Did they employ the "all in" brotherhood of this Husker core, which would walk through fire for each other?

 Did they stay focused and composed and level-headed through the turbulence and the glory?

Did they have each other's back every step of the way? Did they make TEAM a priority of highest order, one which nothing took a front seat to, one which enabled the name emblazoned across the front of the jersey to have more weight than one on the back?

They didn't. Those professional teams, like others of its ilk, went extinct.

 They are glaring examples of talent without all-or-nothing emphasis on the team concept. Those teams eventually smoldered under egotism, dispersing without a championship ring.

Sure, the 2014 Yorktown team was not the most talented in program history.

They weren't projected to be State Champions by the prognosticators and self-anointed gurus. They were never equated with the same blue chip status as the more heralded, more nationally acclaimed Long Island and Baltimore lacrosse breeding houses. 

The 2014 Huskers weren't notable for a star-spangled lineup. They were known and respected because they were cognizant plaques and banners outweigh numbers in the stat book any day that ends with Y.

The '14 Huskers were a tight-knit brotherhood, never allowing a lofty list of goals to elude them. 

The late and legendary Charlie Murphy, a lacrosse pioneer, built the house in 1965. An assortment of self-effacing coaches helped keep it sturdy and scaleable, preaching the tenets of Murphy's system: Selflessness, teamwork, accountability. 

Yorktown mastered the intangibles, which ultimately outweighed star power. 

The result?

A 2014 New York State/Class B Championship.