Adversity is embraced in Kai Solomon’s family. Whenever something goes wrong, their response is “good.”
That type of resiliency has helped Solomon power through two hip surgeries, a pandemic and the recruiting process, which came to an end on Tuesday when the Santa Margarita junior committed to Tufts University.
“If something goes wrong, something good is going to happen,” Solomon said. “With (my family), we have a saying E+R=O. Event plus your response equals the outcome. You can’t control what happens or how it ends up, you can only control your response, so I’ve just been trying to control my response through COVID.”
Solomon’s sophomore season was a challenging one due to injury. Two hip surgeries limited his playing time and when he did play, he wasn’t at his best. He fared much better in his junior year, but coronavirus complicated his recruiting process.
The NCAA granted a fifth year of eligibility to senior players, therefore shrinking the latest recruiting class.
“One of the schools I was talking to, BU, they really liked me but with the fifth-years, they’re going to have over 60 people on their roster,” Solomon said. “So definitely a lot of opportunities got taken away because of that, but you’ve got to control what you can control.”
Solomon has used his downtime since the cancellation of the 2020 prep lacrosse season to good use. He spent more time in the weight room and was able to increase his weight from 185 to 210 pounds.
Due to concerns over coronavirus, he has yet to visit the campus in person, but he’s drawn to the NCAA Division 3 program because of its proximity to Boston, a city he loves, and its culture of hard work.
“Everybody has a sick work ethic,” Solomon, who will most likely play long stick middle for the Jumbos, said. “They judge you completely off your work ethic and how hard you go.”
Solomon isn’t the first to represent SoCal lacrosse at Tufts. St. Margaret’s alumnus Nick Shanks just concluded his senior year at the school. His experience at the school and its team eased Solomon’s mind when it came to his decision.
“I’ve heard nothing but great things about this school,” Solomon said. “Their culture is one of the best parts about the school. They invest a lot into the program.”