Sophomore attackman Bobby Thorp has been given the honor of wearing the distinguished No. 8 jersey for the Cabrini men’s lacrosse program this season to carry on the legacy of Casey Grugan.
“Casey Grugan was like a big brother to me last year. His lacrosse intelligence and leadership is indescribable,” Thorp said. “Wearing his number this season is an absolute privilege and I can only hope to be half the player Casey was.”
Eleventh-year head coach Steve Colfer went on to explain that many schools decide to put a moratorium on a jersey so that it will go unworn for a few years until they decide how to recognize it.
Some other schools might immediately decide to retire the jersey but after talking with Grugan, alumni and the coaching staff, they felt having a quality player wear the jersey every season would be the best way to carry on his legacy.
Thorp has big shoes to fill as he carries on the legacy of Grugan who was the program’s all-time leader in career points with 334, while also ranking second all-time in career goals with 206 and career assists with 128.
Grugan was also a three-time USILA All-American selection and the program’s first-ever first-team honoree.
“We thought this would be the best way to honor Casey’s legacy and his overall four-year career with us,” Coach Colfer announced at a banquet after last season. “We want to find a kid on our team each year that embodies the work ethic, qualities and determination that Casey demonstrated over four years with us.”
In his freshman season Thorp listed fifth on the team with 31 total points on 21 goals and 10 assists. He also received Colonial States Athletic Conference second team accolades in 2010.
“As soon as I met him I knew he was a good guy, a good kid and hardworking. Watching him out there play kind of resembles me, and just his attitude on and off the field. I definitely feel like he was the best choice,” Grugan said.
Grugan also broke the NCAA Division III record for the most consecutive games scoring at least one goal with a long streak of 73 games. Grugan also holds Cabrini’s single-season record for points with 97 and assists with 44.
They may be big shoes to fill but Grugan is ever confident that they have made the right choice with Thorp.
Coach Colfer claimed the decision was tough because there are a lot of men on the team who also could have been chosen to wear the jersey but in the end Thorp was the player that stuck out most to them.
“We felt like Bob Thorp embodies a lot of those qualities that we look for in leadership and work ethic and being a good teammate and a good student athlete here at Cabrini,” Colfer said.
“In a couple years the No. 8 will be passed on to another young player and it will be their turn to represent the legacy. This shows that hard work on and off the field is recognized and rewarded, and I was very excited when Coach Colfer passed the number on to me,” Thorp said. “When it is my turn to pass it on I hope I can be remembered not just as a lacrosse player wearing a specific number, but also as a great teammate and a true Cavalier.”