Courtesy Hofstra Athletic Communications
In the midst of the Hofstra men’s lacrosse team’s successful 8-1 season, the Pride are finding inspiration from the newest and youngest members of the program.
Hofstra formerly adopted four-year old Dylan Beach as part of the Friends of Jaclyn Foundation (FOJ) prior to its March 26 game against Drexel. Beach battled a brain tumor and is currently in remission. The Pride sticklers decided to get involved with trying to add some joy into his life through the FOJ, an organization based in Quincy, Mass. that matches children in need of love, support and friendship with a college or high school sports team.
“He’s tougher than any guy we’ve got in the locker room,” said Hofstra men’s lacrosse head coach Seth Tierney.Since forming in 2005 the FOJ has completed over 230 adoptions in over 20 different sports and has over 1,000 schools on a waiting list. The Hofstra women's lacrosse and softball teams have also been involved with FOJ, which is named for Jaclyn Murphy, who at just nine-years old in March 2004 was diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor called medulloblastoma. Jaclyn’s father Denis Murphy addressed the Hofstra men’s lacrosse team prior to the Drexel game about the joy this project brings to children like Beach who are battling a tough disease at such a young age.
On the day of the adoption, Beach and his family visited with the Pride players and coaching staff in the locker room with the four-year old youngster sporting spider man glasses while being provided some of his favorite snacks. Just prior to the opening faceoff of the Hofstra-Drexel game, a ceremony was held at midfield formally welcoming Beach into the Pride men’s lacrosse family.“It touched me and I know it touched a lot of the guys,” said Hofstra senior star attackman Jay Card, who went onto to score two goals in the Pride’s crucial 11-6 win over the Dragons.
“I don’t know if he realizes the impact that he has on our guys,” said Tierney. “He is a celebrity in our locker room.”