The Keene State College (KSC) men’s lacrosse team has been a Little East Conference (LEC) powerhouse for many years now. And the 2017 team which won that KSC program its 16th LEC title this spring included three former Londonderry High School lax standouts who played significant roles in their contingent’s major success.
Senior attack Rob Hart, senior defender Mike Wiedenfeld, and Wiedenfeld’s freshman midfielder brother Dave all played pivotal roles for a Keene State crew which went 14-4 overall and trounced the U-Mass/Boston squad by a 28-11 tally in the LEC championship match. It was the KSC contingent’s fourth straight LEC title.
What’s more, Hart completed his exceptional Keene State career as that great program’s all-time leading scorer with more than 280 points.
Heading into the 2017 campaign, the attackman and safety studies major Hart had notched 201 points, which was abount 80 shy of the program record held by 2016 KSC graduate Tyler McKelvie.
During the title-winning 2017 season Hart powered the Owls’ offense to the tune of 57 goals and 26 assists for 83 points to finish up with an astounding 284 points in overtaking McKelvie on the Owls’ career scoring charts. All in all, the former Lancer star potted 186 goals and dished out 98 assists to finish with those 284 points.
Registering a goal in every 2017 game save one – including seven games with at least four goals – Hart’s 57 goals and 83 points led the 2017 Owls as did his eight man-up goals and his 180 shots.
Through the first nine games of the season, Hart had just 21 goals and nine assists but he then caught fire starting with a five-goal, two-assist performance as the Owls upset No. 15 Bowdoin on the road.
In the LEC title-game thrashing of U-Mass, Hart scored six times and assisted on two other tallies in a big, eight-point performance. He was later named the LEC tournament’s Most Valuable Player and then a First-Team All-LEC selection for the third time.
The former Londonderry High lacrosse and soccer star had 35 goals and 23 assists during his junior campaign and earned First-Team All-LEC recognition. Hart had also been a First-Team All-LEC player as a sophomore and was named the LEC Rookie of the Year during his freshman season of 2014.
The elder Wiedenfeld, like Hart a safety studies major, was a vital member of the Keene State defense and one of the top collectors of ground balls for the Owls.
The former Lancer snagged six ground balls in the LEC title win over U-Mass, notching 31 for the season and tallying a team-best 33 caused-turnovers as well.
Like teammate Hart, Wiedenfeld played in all 18 of the Owls’ matches and started 17 of them, and he contributed a goal and three assists for the LEC champs.
The elder Wiedenfeld had been an LEC Second-Team All-Conference pick during his junior campaign in helping his Owls to the Little East Conference crown that season as well. He finished that fine campaign with 34 ground balls and 16 caused turnovers.
At the end of his senior campaign, Wiedenfeld was named one of four Owls to participate in the New England Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association East-West Senior All-Star game in early June.
His younger brother Dave, a physical education major who like Mike and Rob Hart excelled in multiple sports while at Londonderry High, made his presence felt as a freshman midfielder on the KSC contingent by notching more than a point per game in playing in 14 contests. He scored eight times and assisted on 12 other goals.
The younger Wiedenfeld was an all-state lacrosse selection in high school and also an all-conference pick during his junior and senior football campaigns. More fine college lax days remain.