Dacks Lax breaks through at Summit

Members of Dacks Lax celebrate the first championship during the nine years the team has competed in the Lake Placid Summit Lacrosse Tournament. Dacks Lax claimed the win, topping Team Genny 12-10 Sunday to take the 18-plus Silver Division crown Sunday at the North Elba Athletic Fields. (Enterprise photos — Lou Reuter)

LAKE PLACID — One of the final games in this year’s Lake Placid Summit Lacrosse tournament was a historic one, as Dacks Lax won a championship for the first time.

The team was founded nine years ago by Saranac Lake native Chris Dupree and has traditionally been comprised of many players from the North Country. Powered mainly by graduates and coaches from SUNY Plattsburgh this summer, Dacks Lax claimed the Men’s 18-plus Silver Division crown Sunday with a 12-10 victory over Team Genny at the North Elba Athletic Fields in Lake Placid.

As the most local team in the division, Dacks Lax battled for two days in unbelievably tight contests on the way to posting a 4-0 record while triumphing in one of the Summit’s most competitive divisions. Achieving a first in team history, Dacks Lax won its first two pool play matches on Saturday by 7-5 and 10-5 scores to reach Sunday’s semifinal round, where it edged Sasquatch Mafia 11-10 and advanced the afternoon championship final. That contest was a back-and-forth battle, and in the end, Dacks Lax netted the last three goals of the game to prevail 12-10.

“It’s about time. The team has just been working together every year,” said Dan Sweet, a Dacks Lax defender from Saranac Lake. “It’s just a bunch of SUNY Plattsburgh alum — a close-knit group that works hard together and grinds everything out. This is about as much as a home team as you could get.

“This was kind of unexpected. All of our games were hard,” Sweet continued. “We just pushed through everything, we outhustled our opponents and finished when we needed to. No blowout games whatsoever. Every team played their butts off, but we played a little bit harder.”

Brett McClelland of Dacks Lax winds up to fire a shot during the second half of Sunday's game against Team Genny. (Enterprise photo — Lou Reuter)

A year ago, Charlie Dullea took over running the team from Dupree, who now lives in Texas and continues to be involved with the game of lacrosse. Dullea hails from Brasher Falls and is a graduate of both St. Lawrence Central and SUNY Plattsburgh and serves as the captain of Dacks Lax.

“Chris turned the team over to me last year, and I think he is probably happier than anybody about this championship,” Dullea said. “Yesterday was the first time we’ve ever won our first two on the first day, and to be here as champions right now, we’re all just jacked up. We’re just all blue collar guys. We like to ball, and the dirtier the better. We’re just a scrappy group of guys. We always say be dirty birds. Ninth year’s the charm, right?”

SUNY Plattsburgh head coach Joe May was also a member of the winning team, and he said the victory is a big deal for both lacrosse in the area as well as Plattsburgh’s college program.

“It’s pretty special. It’s beautiful to see that most of these guys are North Country guys or Plattsburgh alum,” Maya said. “We’ve always kind of embodied the underdog mentality and felt like it this entire tournament, and to come out on top, it’s fun to be a part of it. It’s really awesome.

“It’s guys being selfless; just passing the ball, spreading out and being excited when the boys score,” May added. “We even out playing time and there’s absolutely no bickering within the team. We’re just old college buddies coming back and having a great weekend in the most beautiful place on earth.”

Joe Kromer scoops up the ball for Dacks Lax during Sunday's final in the 18-plus Silver Division at the Lake Placid Summit Lacrosse Tournament. (Enterprise photo — Lou Reuter)

May said this was his sixth year competing in the tournament and added that’s he’s already won two Lake Placid Summit titles playing with Graph-Tex in the event’s most competitive division. May, however, explained that Sunday’s championship outweighed any experience he’s ever had on the lacrosse fields of Lake Placid.

“No doubt, this is the best one,” May said. “We won the SUNYAC championship in 2017 with a lot of these guys. Just to have them all want to come back and be together again — we’re reliving the glory days. We all had a great time.”

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