Athlete of the Week: Hayden Hunt (C’19)

Hayden Hunt (C’19). Photo by Matt Hembree (C’20).

By Richard Pryor III, Executive Staff

It’s hard to make an impact as a substitute in some sports. For example, in sports like soccer and baseball, subs come on late in the game and generally have little impact. I believe I speak for all the fans of Sewanee Men’s Lacrosse that we are thankful for that not being the case in men’s lacrosse, so that Hayden Hunt (C’19) can do what he does best without starting and still make an impact.

Hunt, a junior attacker from Memphis, has only started two games of the 15 games played so far. In the majority of games, Coach Marty Watters has started Daniel Burnum (C’21), Jake Vaughn (C’21), and Cameron Acuff (C’20) at attacker, leading the dominant duo of Henry Burns (C’19) and Hunt to come off the bench.

Despite not starting, Hunt has led the team in points (the combined total of goals and assists) with 41, for which he is tied for eighth in the Southern Athletic Association (SAA) and his goal-scoring prowess places him at fifth in the SAA with 33 goals. This is an increase from his previous two seasons, where he scored 29 goals in 2016 and 23 goals in 2017.

Hunt attributes his success to being a member of a great team, writing that “I would have to say that our team was at a point where we didn’t have an identity. We were caught in the middle between success and disappointment. Our freshman helped to bring our spirits up. Henry Joyner, Sam Huff and Daniel Burnum (recently freed from Benihana) were vocal every day of practice and every game, whether they were on the field or not. We fought hard to free Burnum from Benihana and once he finally was, he lit up the scoreboard with assists and goals alike. Sometimes I have to wipe a tear from my eye when I think about how far we have come as a team. I love my teammates not just as friends, but also as consenting adults who have a little fun. I can not be prouder of where we are right now and can’t wait to beat Rhodes!”

Hunt also added that the team was very close, with great activities like getting Burnum out of Benihana, noting that “He loved Benihana more than anything and refused to leave. The whole team was literally standing outside of Benihana chanting “GET BURNUM OUT OF BENIHANA!””

As Sewanee continues into the SAA Conference Tournament and into the next season, Hunt provides a great example to his fellow players – no matter when you play for the first time in the game, you have a chance to take over the game and make it your own, as evidenced by his team-leading six hat tricks this season.