Women’s lacrosse looks to become official club

Womens lacrosse looks to become official club

By Tyler Davis

With more than 40 sport clubs, the Recreation Center has a lot to offer students, from quidditch to club baseball, and everything in between.

Ultimate Frisbee and club basketball are staples on campus and have been around for decades, while others, like women’s lacrosse and the skateboarding club, are just getting their start.

Groups with enough interested members are required to fill out an application and go through a process involving the Sport Club Executive Board to make sure they have the resources and membership necessary to start a club.

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Assistant Director of Intramural Sports and Sport Clubs Shane Bennett, said sometimes one club branches off into two.

“Our women’s ultimate Frisbee club broke away from the men’s side because they were a co-rec team and they developed their own,” he said. “They had enough participation on the women’s side to where they could create their own club.”

Bennett said there is nothing wrong with a club starting this way, as long as there is an active league for the prospective club to join.

While this is not the most common way clubs are formed, the process does not change. There is still a period when the club must prove it can sustain success, Johnathan Flowers, president of the Sport Club Executive Board, said. The club executive board oversees new clubs and changes to club procedures, and is composed of all the sports clubs officials.

“As president of the Sport Club Executive Board, I meet the new clubs with the executive board itself when they come in and present for their approval,” Flowers said.

This presentation involves detailing the workings of the proposed clubs including setting up meeting times, projected membership and facilities needed for meetings or practices.

To begin the process, students have a couple of hoops to jump through.

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“They need ten members, they need a constitution and they need a faculty adviser,” Flowers said. This is to ensure the potential club has the support and determination needed to be successful. Then the club will present in front of Flowers and the board.

“Basically, we get a feel for what the club wants to do, how they want to do it, who they are and then we decide whether or not we should approve them,” he said.

The process of creating and approving a club is not an easy decision. Club sports are only allotted a certain amount of money, so fundraising is left to the club members. If students want to start a club, it is a big commitment, Flowers said.

Danielle Moser, a freshman from Orland Park studying architecture, is going through the process. Moser is the president of the newest potential sport club addition, women’s lacrosse.

Moser played lacrosse in high school and was offered scholarships to play at Defiance University in Ohio and Allegheny University in Pennsylvania, but came to SIU instead.

“When I came here, I found out that there was no girls’ lacrosse team here, which kind of bummed me out,” she said. “[Some girls] actually started practicing with the boys’ team for a while.”

Moser said some members of the men’s lacrosse team have encouraged her and sophomore Nicole Brodeur to start a women’s lacrosse team.

“They were so open and they wanted us to join because they wanted a girls’ team also so the sport would be more recognized,” she said.

Moser said she in the final steps of the process, but has not been given confirmation.

“We also had a meeting with the Sport Clubs Executive Board,” she said. “We went and talked to them the other day and had to tell them how we were going to get equipment, financial support, future plans, all that stuff.”

Flowers said confirmation for the new club should be coming soon.

“We just need to make sure they know all the things they need to be doing as a sport club,” he said. “We met with them last week and they’ve been working closely with men’s lacrosse to get their feet under them.”

Flowers said when they become official, they still do not have the full leeway other clubs have. They will be in a testing period while the board monitors their progress, as is custom with all other sport clubs.

“When we approve a club, it’s with certain restrictions as based in our sport clubs manual,” he said. “We put clubs on probation for a year to see how they’re doing, to see if they can maintain that critical mass of members and that forwards momentum that got them started.”

After that, Flowers said they are on their own, but still have to maintain the membership and the excitement the club created in the first place. Flowers said active membership is key to any club’s success.

“A club can stand and fall on how well the officers and its members do their job,” he said. “If your president, treasurer and secretary aren’t on top of your funding, your membership and your room reservations, then your club will suffer.”

Flowers said he does not foresee that being an issue for the women’s lacrosse team because of the excitement of its members and officials to get started.

“We expect them to be active,” he said. “The president and vice president seem passionate about their sport and dedicated to keeping the club going.”

Flowers and Moser said the team is recruiting new members and will hold informational meetings later this semester, and plans to schedule matches next semester.

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