Just outside of Toronto, Ontario is the suburban city of Hamilton, the place that number 19 Lucas Ferritto calls home. It is there that a four-year old Lucas first laced up his soccer cleats — well, at that age, maybe it was his father that actually did the lacing. Of course, Mr. Ferritto probably tied a lot of cleats that day, since he was also the coach. Lucas attributes much of his understanding of the game to his father, saying, “I grew up with my dad coaching me, so, I credit him for a lot of my actions and characteristics that I bring out to the field.”
When number 19 was in high school his club, Mt. Hamilton Avalanche, hosted a showcase and SFU’s head coach Alan Koch was in attendance. Afterwards, Coach Koch approached him and offered a chance to come to Burnaby. Ferritto mulled his options over with his parents, Joe and Linda, and then made the decision to become a Clansman.
Sadly, in his first year at SFU Ferritto tore his right quadriceps, which also happens to be his kicking leg. After spending his whole first year rehabilitating his injured leg, Lucas came back feeling strong. However, he pushed the envelope a little too far and reinjured his quad. “I was definitely trying to push myself a little bit more than I should have . . . which caused me to strain it again,” said Lucas.
Two quad injuries in as many years would be enough for many people to call it quits, but after a few short months Ferritto was back in action. During the past summer, the deficit in his leg caused his right hamstring to tear, forcing Ferritto to the sidelines for a third time. However, diligence in rehab allowed Lucas to return in time for this season. With his leg feeling strong, Ferritto played in the first three games this year, until a corner kick resulted in a fourth injury to the same leg. “I was devastated after having been out for so long, then coming back and seeing success and being sidelined again,” said Lucas.
Men’s soccer in the NCAA has a very short season, just 18 games. Due to the brevity of the season, Ferritto was unsure if he would be able to make it back in time to see the field again this year. In fact, Lucas said he was told by one doctor, “I should focus on something else in my life, since I’m probably not going to play soccer ever again.” However, Ferritto wasn’t ready to pack it in yet, so he sought out other doctors until he found one who believed he could get Lucas back on the pitch. After missing most of the season number 19 was able to recover and saw a few minutes of game time during the regular season. Ferritto said, “Being the fourth time, I was really down on myself. I didn’t know if I was going to be able to come back this season. The help I got from my doctor had me return ahead of schedule.”
Some readers may be wondering, after so many injuries, why rush back for this year? Well, the men’s soccer team happened to be 16–1–1 going into post-season play, this also being SFU’s first year of eligibility in the NCAA. In the Clan’s first ever post-season win, the go-ahead goal came off the foot of none other than the comeback kid himself. Ferritto said, “The goal meant a lot to me, it was a personal goal as well. It also felt really good to come back from the injury and be able to contribute again.” The men’s soccer team has won two since then and is to traveling to Evans, Georgia this week for the Final Four round of the NCAA National Tournament. Lucas said, “Being the only Canadian team in the NCAA, it’s important that we show the NCAA that we are here to stay and that we belong here.”