First-year Westerville North High School boys lacrosse coach Nate Nelson is looking to upgrade the attitude within his program.

First-year Westerville North High School boys lacrosse coach Nate Nelson is looking to upgrade the attitude within his program.

Nelson replaced Adam Beasley, who stepped down following one season and now is an assistant at Columbus Academy.

"We're changing the morale of the team and it's changing for the best," Nelson said. "They're buying into the program and they're coming together as a team, which was what we were trying to create last year. It started to come around last year and it's just continuing to build."

Nelson was an assistant at North last season and previously coached at Dublin Coffman for four years. Beasley also was a former assistant at Coffman.

Nelson is a 2007 graduate of Coffman and 2011 graduate of Wheeling Jesuit University. He played defender for both lacrosse programs.

The Warriors open Friday, April 1, against DeSales in the Wildcat Classic at Westerville South and begin OCC-Central Division play April 9 at Delaware.

Back to lead the way is senior midfielder Quinn Nicodemus, who was first-team all-league and honorable mention all-region last season.

Also back are seniors Spencer Dutson (goalkeeper), Nick Stocker (defender) and Taylor Warren (midfielder).

Dutson is expected to replace 2015 graduate Will Newton, who was first-team all-league and honorable mention all-region a year ago.

Other returnees are juniors Michael Bayda (attacker/midfielder), Tommy Bichsel (attacker), Parker Hicks (attacker), Keeton Rafferty (defender) and Nicholas Thompson (defender) and sophomores Jack Larimer (midfielder), Kendrick Rodgers (midfielder) and Zack Whaley (defender).

Other players are seniors Luke Ewing (defender), Mark Just (midfielder), Jeff Stone (midfielder) and Nick Whaley (defender), junior Grayson Horn (defender), sophomores Caden Culver (attacker), Richard Du (goalie), Luke Fuller (attacker), Drew Iarussi (defender) and Ben Watson (defender) and freshmen Trent Bobo (midfielder), Andrew Crawford (midfielder), Caden Crist (attacker) and Will Olson (midfielder).

"Our junior and sophomore classes are very strong, so we're trying to build off of that," Nelson said.

Last season, the Warriors went 4-13 overall and 2-4 in the OCC-Central, finishing fifth behind champ-ion Delaware (6-0).

North split with its Westerville rivals, defeating South 13-5 and losing to Central 15-6.

"We want to come together as a team," Nelson said. "Last year we had a lot of individuals on the team and we're really stressing the importance of coming together and playing as one (unit), and the success will come along with that instead of just playing for one's self."

Another key loss to graduation was defender Drew Dutson, who was honorable mention all-league.

Schroder takes over Central program

Central also has a new coach as former Ohio Machine player Stefan Schroder has replaced Keith Copeland, who stepped down after nine seasons with the program.

Copeland was head coach for three seasons after being an assistant the previous six.

Schroder was an assistant last season at Columbus Academy. He also has served as an assistant at Olentangy Liberty and as a middle school coach at New Albany.

Schroder is a 2004 graduate of East Syracuse-Minoa High School in New York, a 2006 graduate of Onondaga Community College in Syracuse and a 2008 graduate of Ohio State. He played lacrosse for all three schools.

A goalie, he helped Onondaga win the National Junior College Athletic Association title in 2006.

The Warhawks open Saturday, April 2, against visiting Thomas Worthington and begin OCC-Central play Tuesday, April 5, at Pickerington Central.

"It's nice having a strong football program (at Central) and we do have some pretty solid athletes, so I was pleasantly surprised when I first got here," Schroder said. "They've picked up on what we've been preaching pretty well so far. It will be interesting to see how we look going against somebody else rather then ourselves in practice."

The top returnees are senior defender Dante York (second-team all-league, honorable mention all-region) and senior midfielder and face-off specialist Kyle Shepherd (honorable mention all-league).

The other returnees are seniors Danny Calpin (attacker), Jacob Haines (midfielder), Noah Jones (attacker), Logan McManamon (midfielder), Alan Toman (attacker) and Augie West (defender), juniors Mitchell Harrison (midfielder), Hunter Hudgins (defender), Mitchell Moore (midfielder), Wilson Misiuk (midfielder) and Patrick Zimmerer (attacker) and sophomores Luke Chops (midfielder), Ryan Clapham (midfielder), Dominic Letterio (midfielder) and Bryson Munoz (midfielder).

Other players are junior Charlie McDaniel (attacker), sophomores Mike Doud (defender), Brandon Farley (goalie), Jax Looby (attacker) and Jacob Secrest (defender/goalie) and freshman Nick DeRose (goalie).

"I'm excited with the challenges that face us this year," Schroder said. "We have a very solid senior class. We have some talented underclassmen and we could be potentially dangerous if we do the right things."

Last season, Central went 3-3 in the OCC-Central to finish fourth.

The Warhawks won the Westerville Cup for the second consecutive season, defeating North 15-6 and South 26-1.

Key losses to graduation were attacker Brooks Burton, who was OCC-Central Player of the Year and first-team all-region, and attacker Connor Syfko, who was first-team all-league and honorable mention all-region.

South looking at 'smaller' goals

South is looking to improve on last season's 1-16 record.

The Wildcats opened by losing to visiting Buckeye Valley 16-2 on March 24.

South begins league play April 27 at Big Walnut.

"Our team's goals right now are smaller things like winning groundballs, things that everybody can participate in," fourth-year coach Mike Norman said. "We're not really talking about 'X' number of wins. We're putting a new offense in this year, so like anything else offense comes slower than defense."

Sophomore Jeffrey Daugherty again has earned the starting assignment in goal.

Other returnees are senior Tate Howell (defender), juniors Thomas Little-Claytor (midfielder), Alex Rebmann (midfielder) and Victor Runyon (midfielder) and sophomores Henry Clareson (defender), Carter Henry (attacker), Gabe Jelkin (defender), Curtis Livingston (attacker), Shawn Smith (attacker) and Bron Toth (defender).

Also looking to contribute are senior Russell Batchelder (midfielder), junior Isaac Bumgarner (midfielder), sophomores Ryan Butler (defender) and Hayden Townsend (defender) and freshmen Tyler Brown (midfielder), Ahmed Dregia (defen-der), Ethan Hollern (defender), Kent Howell (midfielder), Brandon Lowery (goalie), Oliver Runyon (defender), Kahwan Thrweatt (attacker), Bryce Wilson (midfielder) and Adam Wartel (midfielder).

"We have a lot of guys who just picked up the stick," Norman said. "It's challenging for them. We have our work cut out for us, but we have healthy numbers again."

Last season, South went 0-5 in the OCC-Central. Norman and Danny Gibson of Pickerington North were named league Coaches of the Year.

Schedules

CENTRAL

April 2 -- vs. Thomas Worthington

*April 5 -- at Pickerington Central

*April 8 -- vs. Big Walnut

April 9 -- at Hilliard Davidson

April 11 -- at Olentangy Orange

April 13 -- vs. St. Charles

April 15 -- vs. Dublin Coffman

*April 19 -- at Pickerington North

April 22 -- vs. Hilliard Bradley

April 25 -- vs. Columbus Academy

*April 27 -- vs. Delaware

April 29 -- vs. Olentangy Liberty

May 2 -- at Gahanna

May 4 -- vs. New Albany

May 7 -- vs. DeSales

May 10 -- at Dublin Scioto

*May 11 -- at Westerville South

*May 13 -- vs. Westerville North

NORTH

April 1 -- DeSales in Wildcat Classic at Westerville South

April 2 -- Louisville (Ky.) Male in Wildcat Classic at Westerville South

April 4 -- at Columbus Academy

April 6 -- at Buckeye Valley

*April 9 -- at Delaware

April 13 -- vs. Hilliard Darby

April 16 -- at Sylvania Southview

April 18 -- at Gahanna

April 23 -- at Hilliard Davidson

April 25 -- vs. Dublin Scioto

*April 27 -- vs. Pickerington Central

April 30 -- vs. Marysville

*May 2 -- at Big Walnut

*May 3 -- vs. Pickerington North

May 6 -- vs. Olentangy Orange

*May 9 -- vs. Westerville South

*May 13 -- at Westerville Central

SOUTH

March 24 -- vs. Buckeye Valley

April 2 -- Louisville (Ky.) Male in Wildcat Classic at home

April 3 -- Licking Valley in Wildcat Classic at home

April 6 -- vs. Bexley

April 12 -- at Jonathan Alder

April 22 -- at Beavercreek

April 23 -- at Wheeling (W.Va.) Central Catholic

*April 27 -- at Big Walnut

April 29 -- vs. Morrow Little Miami

May 3 -- at Johnstown

*May 7 -- vs. Delaware

*May 9 -- at Westerville North

*May 10 -- vs. Pickerington Central

*May 11 -- vs. Westerville Central

May 13 -- vs. Licking Valley

*May 14 -- vs. Pickerington North

*League contest