The Student News Site of Malvern Preparatory School

Friar's Lantern

The Student News Site of Malvern Preparatory School

Friar's Lantern

The Student News Site of Malvern Preparatory School

Friar's Lantern

More Than A Winning Culture: Malvern Lacrosse

After winning the 2023 Inter-Academic League Playoff Championship, Malvern Lacrosse attackmen, then Junior, Ennis Udo ‘24 exemplified Malvern brotherhood connecting with Haverford players.
Pierce Laveran
Credit: @plav11

One of the biggest and most successful programs in Malvern Prep sports, Malvern Lacrosse closed out last year with an emphatic upset win against Haverford on May 20, 2023. However, prior to dominating postseason play, the Friars lost the Inter-Ac title, going through the regular season with the record of 16-7, including two losses to Haverford. 


“Losing at Malvern, especially for lacrosse, isn’t really something that happens very often. But we had to go back to the drawing board, and I think it ultimately brought us together as a team. Going into the last [championship] game, it was like we had nothing to lose while they had everything to lose. So, we played loose, had fun with it, and we were able to come out with a win,” Udo said.


Udo, who scored six goals in the semifinal and two goals in the final, was a key part in Malvern’s success both in regular and postseason play. In the final, Malvern managed to pull away with an early lead and presented a dominant defensive performance. The Friars took the game nine goals to five.  After the final, as the clock hit zero, Udo shared a special moment with Haverford goalie, Brody Murphy, where they congratulated each other on their great seasons and a hard fought game. Showing great sportsmanship and strong character, Udo took time away from hard-earned victorious celebration with teammates to shake hands with a rival.


“Sportsmanship is not just in lacrosse, but in every sport at Malvern. That’s how [our coaches, trainers, and directors] teach us to act on the lacrosse field, football field, basketball court, and in the swimming pool, [the sport] doesn’t really matter,” Udo said.


Murphy, who lost the championship game despite an excellent goalie performance with many key saves, shared similar feelings about their shared moment.


“Shaking hands and coming together with Ennis was definitely a cool and special moment. Ennis and I are mutual friends and have been playing lacrosse with and against each other for years now. He had some really great plays for Malvern and the moment definitely built our relationship and helped bring closure to a competitive season,” Murphy said. 


Days after the championship game, the moment lived on by going viral on Instagram Reels and Tiktok, amassing over 500k likes and just under 3 million views. The freelance creator, Pierce Laveran, is responsible for the viral video. Laveran is also a Haverford student who shoots photos and videos of various high school and college sports. 


“Pierce is actually a friend of mine and a student here at Haverford so I got to see the video right after the game. [The video] going viral is awesome, but to me it means so much more than that. It showed mutual respect and sportsmanship while being competitive at the same time,” Murphy said.


An important aspect of the video and the moment as a whole is the surroundings of Murphy and Udo. While the student-athletes came together, the Malvern student section, which filled the stands of West Chester University, stormed the field in celebration. Haverford players also quickly came together in defeat. Both Murphy and Udo demonstrated sportsmanship taking time away from their teams, in celebration or in defeat, to congratulate each other as competitors. Representing their schools, both athletes showed how sport can transcend the culture of winning and exhibit brotherhood, character, and class.


“I think you could have replaced me for any Malvern student and it would have been the same because that’s how they teach us to be here through sportsmanship and culture. Malvern teaches [its students and athletes] how to be good sports and good people, and that carries on through sports and life,” Udo said.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

All Friar's Lantern Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *