A win always makes the future look better.
After chalking up its first victory Wednesday against Boston College, the Harvard men's lacrosse team is gearing up for its upcoming road games at Army and Pennsylvania.
The Crimson (1-2) travels down to West Point, N.Y. this Saturday to face the Cadets, and then, after a week of two-a-day practices, Harvard hits the road again to meet the Quakers.
Players said that Harvard's demolition of the Eagles bodes well for the games against Army and Penn.
"Our offense stepped up against B.C.," senior defender Pete Welch said. "If the offense continues to improve the way it has, we should do well."
Against Army's aggressive defense, the Crimson will need to put together the kind of offensive heat that netted them nine goals in the first half of the B.C. game.
"It's going to be a question of mind set," sophomore Mike Porter said, who tallied three scores on Wednesday. "We know we're capable of scoring goals, we just have to perform."
Similar to Cornell
The Cadet's play a lot like a team that gave Harvard big problems this season--Cornell. And Army beat the Big Red 9-8 earlier this year.
"Army's always big, strong and fast," Welch said. "They'll try to wear us down and our offense is going to have to handle the pressure well."
After the game at Army, the Crimson returns to Cambridge for the week and will practice twice a day in preparation for Penn and the rest of the season.
"That week will be when we pull everything together," Co-Captain Brian Connolly said. "Having all that time will be a definite advantage because we'll be able to concentrate fully on lacrosse."
Players said they see the game against the Quakers as pivotal because it comes slightly before the midway point and allows the team to gauge how far they have come.
Last year, Harvard pulled off a stunning overtime win over Penn 12-11, and the Quakers will try to avenge that loss when Harvard goes down to Philadelphia.
"They'll be a challenge because they'll be gunning for us," Welch said, "but we have a whole week to prepare, and we're looking forward to traveling and winning."
The Quakers will rely on their defense which returns all of last year's starters and will try to foil any scoring attempt by Harvard's young and quick offense.