After going 5-29 in its first two seasons of CIF varsity play, Simi Valley put together a 13-4 record last spring against a schedule that was designed to give the squad a taste of victory, not necessarily to contend for championships.
The Pioneers had gone 3-21 in the Marmonte League in 2013 and 2014, so they adopted an independent slate in 2015 and went to work learning how to compete with other developing programs. The result was a winning record and, perhaps, some confidence and momentum heading into the program’s fourth season.
Here is coach Bijan Nickroo II on Simi Valley lacrosse with four months until preseason practices get under way:
State of the program
“We graduated eight seniors in June who all played a big part in our success last year, but we have strong underclassmen that will hopefully step up this year. We also have a strong freshman class, and a couple of them might be on varsity in the spring. I see us as having a solid foundation on which we can start to build.”
Top returning players
“Returning this year I have Jack Henderson, senior midfield/attack/d-pole. He played everywhere last year. Jack will be a fourth-year varsity starter. Griffin Rodas, sophomore LSM/attack, also played everywhere last year. Griffin will be a second-year varsity starter. Mark Mumford, junior FOGO, will be a third-year varsity starter.”
“We have a couple of players who will move up from JV, but for the most part it is on the second- and third-line guys from last year to step up and fill spots.”
Primary emphasis of fall ball
“We are focusing on being strong on the basics. Gotta walk before we can run. We’re starting to jog now, and it feels good! Our goal is to be better than last year, and I believe we will be.”