The Helmet Dilemma

Peter Bauman, Journalist

As the fall sports season starts to wind down, the plethora of winter and spring sports offered here at IHS starts to emerge from the horizon. Winter sports registration is now open, and spring sports have already begun to creep into the mind of all student athletes. Among those students is the boys varsity lacrosse team. Jake Patterson, who has been the assistant coach under Glenn Foster for two years now, has already made a huge mark on the program. From running youth clinics and fundraisers to his all-around great coaching ability, it is as if he has been in the program for years. His newest task has been purchasing new helmets for the team. 

Unlike football, where gear is provided for all athletes, lacrosse requires that all players purchase their own equipment. This causes many discrepancies between the athletes and what they wear. For example, senior goalie Ryan Orroth has always worn a brand new black Cascade helmet, while former defenseman Teddy Gray sported an old, white helmet. The differences between the players’ attire lacked professionalism and unity. This was the issue that Patterson was hoping to resolve with the new helmets. According to senior captain and star player Henry Wright, new helmets  “will make us look more presentable.” Patterson is trying to make sure that all players can wear the new helmets. Whether they purchase one to keep or just rent one for the season, he longs to see a sea of similar helmets on the field this spring. 

The biggest dilemma now is: what helmets is the team going to get? The Cascade XRS has been the obvious choice in terms of model, but the design has been a whole other issue. Early this fall, the team had begun voting for which colors are best. The main options were: metallic orange, white, or black. The metallic orange option got ruled out pretty quickly. Freshman Louie Harrington was saddened by this, and stated, “I was disappointed that the orange helmet was not chosen.” After constant voting, arguments, and voting some more, the final decision was reached just a week or two before this was published. The winner was the white helmet with a white facemask and an orange accent on the chin. 

While the bulk of the issue has been tackled, there is still more to come. The next task is choosing which decals and stickers to put on the helmet. In the past, it has always been the same every year: tiger stripes on the top and the Ipswich Tiger logo on either side. But this year the team is hoping to do something different. Wright has a few ideas, including “tiger eyes, numbers, tiger print, and claw marks.” Switching up from the classic design could be a fantastic idea, but only time will tell what the final outcome will be. 

As the season approaches, there are still a lot of details still up in the air, but the team is sure that helmets will not be one of them.