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Xaverian’s Buckley helps build winning culture in Columbus

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By Michael Flanagan
Hometown Weekly Sports Editor

Luke Buckley (7) navigates through a stick check behind the cage during Ohio State’s 9-6 loss to Maryland in Monday’s title game. – Luke Buckley (7) goes one-on-one with a Towson long-pole and makes a cut to the cage during Ohio State’s 11-10 win over the Tigers in Saturday’s Division I National Semifinals at Gillette Stadium. Photos by Michael Flanagan

Luke Buckley (7) navigates through a stick check behind the cage during Ohio State’s 9-6 loss to Maryland in Monday’s title game. – Luke Buckley (7) goes one-on-one with a Towson long-pole and makes a cut to the cage during Ohio State’s 11-10 win over the Tigers in Saturday’s Division I National Semifinals at Gillette Stadium. Photos by Michael Flanagan

In recent years, the sport of collegiate lacrosse has taken off in popularity all across the country, but especially, in the Big 10. This past holiday weekend, Walpole resident and Xaverian alum Luke Buckley helped pioneer the Ohio State Buckeyes to the program’s first ever NCAA Division I National Championship game at Gillette Stadium, as Buckley and the Bucks took down Towson 11-10 in comeback fashion in Saturday’s National Semifinals.

Throughout the 2017 NCAA Tournament and regular season, Buckley was a featured weapon for Ohio State on attack, playing in all 21 games (started in eight), scoring 15 goals and tallying six assists. Trailing 8-3 in the second half on Saturday against Towson, Ohio State opted to shift Buckley from his normal sub-on role whenever the Buckeyes controlled possession, to a full-time role at crease on attack. Buckley may not have scored in the comeback win against the Tigers, but the redshirt freshman’s ability to set screens for teammates, navigate the ball, drive to the cage and draw flags, and his incredible off-ball movement proved pivotal to Ohio State’s 8-2 run to end the game.

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