National semifinal loss fuels lacrosse star

Senior attackman Jack Dumsa (left) battles a defender. Dumsa was nominated as one of four finalists for the Men

Courtesy photo

Senior attackman Jack Dumsa (left) battles a defender. Dumsa was nominated as one of four finalists for the Men

Zach Sepanik

A loss to Davenport University in the Men’s Collegiate Lacrosse Association national championships semifinal in May still haunts some members of the Grand Valley State University men’s club lacrosse team, but for one individual, the loss has pushed him to new heights with his play.

This season, senior attackman Jack Dumsa is nominated as one of four finalists for MCLA Preseason Player of the Year at the Division II level.

“It puts a target on my back, but also, being recognized in that way really does drive me to compete at the highest level,” Dumsa said. “I think it is a great achievement for myself, and at the same time I think it does wonders for our growing program.”

Last season, Dumsa led the MCLA with 75 assists and also scored 59 goals, giving him a total of 134 points for second overall on the team.

“He is a very dynamic player,” said junior midfielder Tyler Farmer. “He will beat you with his speed, and then if he can’t beat you with his speed, which is rarely the occasion, he will definitely beat you with the stick. But probably the most key thing about Jack Dumsa is his field vision. He’ll get it to you right when he needs to.”

It goes beyond the statistics for Dumsa, however. The 16-15 quadruple-overtime loss to Davenport finished last season one game too early for the team, but he said he sees it as something the squad can learn from.

“That is always in the back of our mind — it really has affected all the guys and obviously it was a heartbreaker,” Dumsa said. “It can only build experience and it really drives us to get where we need to be this year. Losing such a big game can humble us, but at the same time get us to where we need to get to.”

Not only has the loss pushed Dumsa to continue developing as a distributor, but also as a leader that makes the team stronger, said GVSU head coach Tim Murray.

“To lose in that type of fashion, I think it makes us even hungrier,” he said. “It has given us a little bit of an edge and attitude this season. We are even more willing to put in the extra work, to run the extra mile, whatever it takes to make up for that difference that we fell short by last season.”

Even with a team-first mentality, Dumsa is only 85 points from the MCLA Division II career scoring record. He had 130 points last season and has a full season ahead of him.

“The only person that doesn’t feel that he needs the recognition is Jack himself,” Murray said. “That is one of the best parts about him. He is a team first type of guy. Having said that, he is about as deserving as it gets for this type of award.”

The team opens its season on Feb. 4 at 4 p.m. against Carthage College in the Kelly Family Sports Center (formerly the Laker Turf Building) at GVSU.

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