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Fans for life

Senior midfielder Jeff Gilbert's parents have missed only one SU home lacrosse game in the past four years.

Mary Ellen and Michael Gilbert have only missed one Syracuse University lacrosse match in the past four years.

But more than just being fans of the popular sport, the Gilberts are there to watch their son Jeff, a senior midfielder for the Orange.

“My parents have been at every game since my freshman year, except for one which they missed because they went to my brother’s college graduation,” Jeff said. “That’s an acceptable excuse.”

Growing up in nearby Cicero, Jeff and his older brother frequently came to the Carrier Dome to watch the championship-winning team play. Their father, a former lacrosse player and Jeff’s coach throughout middle school and high school, says that Jeff was passed into good hands when he was recruited for SU and came to play at the school of his childhood dreams.

Though this spring marks Jeff’s final year with the team, the Gilberts and several other parents of players have made plans to organize an annual homecoming game for alumni to return. Jeff and his parents all expressed a desire to continue this tradition for as long as possible.  

“We want to make it an effort so that there’s at least one game every year that all our peers and friends and family members will be here,” said Mary Ellen. “It’s really important to us to keep coming back.”

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