VICTOR, N.Y. (WROC) — The epitome of having big shoes to fill is what Dan Stone is doing this season at Victor.
“It’s hard to go any further upward,” said Stone. “Sometimes the only place to go is down and we’re very conscious of that.”
The Blue Devils boys lacrosse head coach is taking over from Jim Andre, who led the team to four state titles in the last five seasons and six straight sectional titles. As the team looks to make it seven, the message is simple.
“Things weren’t broke, we’re not trying to fix it,” said Stone. “We’re just trying to add little pieces along the way and make what’s good even better.”
The transition couldn’t be easier, with Stone spending the last 17 seasons as Modified head coach.
“We all know who he was since seventh grade, eighth grade,” said senior midfielder Cal Lambert. “We’ve had him more than we’ve had Coach Andre, so it’s just normal now.”
“It really hasn’t felt like a huge difference,” said senior defenseman Alex Parton. “Coach Andre is probably louder, more of like a presence at practice— he’ll get loud in between drills. But Coach Stone is still there to pump your tires, he’s been awesome. “
Stone says that he has Andre on speed dial and the two talk often, with Andre staying very involved in the program.
“He’s that behind-the-scenes guy,” said Stone. “He calls himself ‘The Consigliere’ after ‘The Godfather.’ He’s that behind-the-scenes guy and anything we need he’s right there.”
With the cancelation of last year’s season, only two Blue Devils have significant varsity experience. That includes Lambert, an Army lacrosse commit. He missed his sophomore campaign with a shoulder injury and shook off the rust with a meager eight-goal performance in Victor’s season opener.
“You always dream of senior year with all your best friends that you made throughout youth and Modified and JV,” said Lambert. “We want to play until June 15th and make that last game a win.”
That would mean seven straight sectional titles and would signal that the mighty Victor dynasty is in good hands.