‘Chemistry carried over’ to Temple lacrosse team

Several members of the men’s club lacrosse team were former high school teammates.

(Left to right) Junior attacker Matt Barrella, senior attacker Owen Winters and sophomore attacker Chris Koch practice at the Temple Sports Complex on Jan. 23. The three players went to Hatboro-Horsham High School in Horsham, Pennsylvania. | JEREMY ELVAS / THE TEMPLE NEWS

Nine Pennsylvania high schools have more than one graduate on the Temple University men’s club lacrosse team. 

Senior Owen Winters, junior Matt Barrella and sophomore Chris Koch all graduated from Hatboro-Horsham High School in Horsham, Pennsylvania, where they were teammates for the Hatters’ boys lacrosse team. 

Hatboro-Horsham is one of two high schools that has contributed three players to the club. 

The three players are now key contributors to Temple’s club lacrosse team, where their experience playing together in high school helps their team on the field now. 

“In high school, our whole team is really close, so just coming here just the chemistry has carried over,” Koch said.

They have known each other for about seven years, Barrella said. Winters and Koch are members of the same fraternity, Kappa Delta Rho, Winters said. 

Barrella and Koch have been playing together since junior varsity. They enjoyed playing together, Barrella said.

“Koch has been a gamer his entire career that I’ve played with him,” Winters said. “He always wants to win and he’s going to make the necessary plays to make that happen.” 

They all provide a different skill set, which helps the offense be precise and efficient, coach Chris Berkelbach said.  

Winters, a media studies and production major, is playing his fourth year with the team. 

“He’s one of our strongest scorers on the team,” Berkelbach said. “He leads by example and knows where to be on the field. He’s someone we heavily rely on once the season rolls around. He’s been helping us create this culture we have now and he always has high energy, he’s a great piece of our team.” 

Barrella, an engineering major, may not be the biggest or fastest player on the field, but Koch said he finds ways to score. 

“He’s a very silky finisher inside, he’s not the fastest or the biggest, but he is always open and catches the ball if you throw it to him,” said Koch, a finance major. “He’s got great stick work inside.”

The 2020 season will start on Feb. 15 against Central Connecticut State University at Geasey Field. The team will compete in the Men’s Collegiate Lacrosse Association for the first time this season. 

While the team is competitive, the trio enjoys the chance to go on trips with their teammates. 

“Whenever we go on road trips we end up always having so much fun,” Winters said. “Whenever we get together we have a good time. We have the same kind of humor and grew up in the same culture.” 

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