BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — Spring sport senior athletes around the country are going through the same thing right now: dealing with the fact they are missing out on their final season of play for their school. We take a look at some of those athletes in Western New York and celebrate their achievements.
Former Orchard Park Quaker Dan Kritkausky was five games into his senior season on the Mercyhurst lacrosse team before the NCAA cancelled all spring sports for athletes across the nation.
“It’s definitely been kind of frustrating because we had such a good team this year, we were number two in the country before we found out our season got cancelled,” Mercyhurst senior lacrosse player Dan Kritkausky said. “I know a lot of guys are frustrated that it could’ve been our year to win in our final year playing, so it was definitely tough for a lot of guys.”
“Just being home, it’s a lot different than doing school online. Classes are all online for us, so it’s definitely been an adjustment not having class and lacrosse every day. Going from an absolutely jam packed day to kind of doing nothing all day.”
The Lakers were ranked second in the nation with a 5-0 record, including two wins over top 20 teams, and outscoring opponents by an average of 12.8 to 7.2 before the season ended. Looking to repeat as Great Midwest Conference champs, Mercyhurst was set to put together another standout year to send their 11 seniors out in style.
“Winning our conference championship last year and just being around the guys every day. No one really understands it until they’ve done it, and as an athlete that was a big thing for all of us that we all talk about that we really miss,” Kritkausky said.
With his senior season gone, Dan will be attending Canisius to get his MBA and play his final lacrosse season with the Griffs. He says it was an easy decision to make.
“I wanted another year to compete and see what I could do with my last year,” Kritkausky said. “I wanted to end my career on my terms rather than have it ended by the NCAA.”
Though he won’t return to the turf with a Mercyhurst jersey on ever again, Dan hopes to have left behind a legacy of hard work in his four years as a Laker.
“I always pride myself with working hard, outworking everyone else, being a hardworking person that made an impact on people, hopefully I helped some people along the way,” Kritkausky.