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University of South Dakota's Men's Lacrosse Club

by USD Lacrosse History & Alumni
(Vermillion, SD)

USD Lacrosse History & Alumni

The University of South Dakota Lacrosse club is not the first lacrosse club in the State of South Dakota. Actually the first lacrosse club in the State was the Mad Cow Lacrosse Club founded by Brad Barclay in the spring of 1999. The Mad
Cows were a rag tag group that had a difficult time recruiting players because of a lack of knowledge about the sport of lacrosse. Often confused for rugby the original (11)players had to frequently refer to the sport as: “The game they play in American Pie”.

Despite working hard on recruiting players and the backing they were receiving from a sponsorship from the Shamrock Lacrosse Company, the Mad Cows did not compete in their first semester of existence. At the end of the semester the team elected officers and captains and the three co-founders of the Mad Cow Lacrosse
Club were essentially named, Brad Barclay, Tyler Neuharth, and Josh Ring.

The Mad Cows saw their first competition in the spring of 2000 when they were invited to a tournament at St. Mary’s college in Winona Minnesota. They lost all three games they played in the tournament, but it was great field experience for them and it made them realize that they could not compete with only a 12 man roster.

In the spring of 2001 the first of two Battle of the Borders Tournaments was held at the University of South Dakota. Two newly founded clubs at Dordt College from Sioux Center Iowa and the University of Nebraska, Lincoln came to South Dakota to play in their inaugural games. It was in their second home game that the Mad
Cows picked up their first
victory against UNL, who became an instant rival. The Mad Cow Lacrosse club made another major step in the spring of 2001 and joined the Upper Midwest Lacrosse League as a substitute team for two tournaments.

At the end of the 2001 season team founder Brad Barclay had decided to move to Rapid City. With Brad’s absence the Mad Cows diffused. In the fall of 2002 former Mad Cows Tyler Neuharth and Josh Ring decided to keep lacrosse alive and form a new organization under the University of South Dakota’s Campus Recreation Department, thus USD Lacrosse was born.

After associating themselves with the University, lacrosse became a very popular club sport at the University boasting rosters with over 20 players in its first two seasons. They played two spring seasons in the Great Plans Lacrosse League where their abilities and talents grew. In the spring of 2003 the team was locked in a 4 way tie for first place in the GPLL regular season play. Unfortunately they were not able to clinch the championship in the playoffs.

In the fall of 2003 new president Jesse Kurtz took the team to the next level by having the team join the USLIA, governing body of college club lacrosse. They have enjoyed great success in the Great Rivers Lacrosse Conference.

In the 2005 season, USD lacrosse was able to do something it had never done in the GRLC...they made the playoffs. Not only did they make the playoffs, they were the number four seed. Unfortunately, they lost in the first round to perennial rival Dordt.

The University of South Dakota Lacrosse Club is a club Sport under the Campus Recreation Department at the University of South Dakota.


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