A man of many talents, Will Foster brings a new song to Marquette’s offense

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(Photo courtesy of Marquette Athletics.)

What does Minnesota’s 2020 number one ranked high school basketball team, that went 28-0, have in common with Marquette men’s lacrosse? One name: Will Foster.

“Lacrosse is very similar to basketball in some aspects of the game,” Foster said.

Originally born in Silver Spring, Maryland, Foster moved to the Land of 10,000 Lakes in the first grade.

“I didn’t start playing lacrosse until I got to Minnesota. No one in my family has ever played lacrosse, so I was kind of the first one,” Foster said.

With basketball roots in the family and the passion for something new, Foster said the basketball court shaped his skills on the lacrosse field.

Marquette men’s lacrosse head coach Andrew Stimmel said the basketball player in Foster fulfills Marquette’s dynamic of “be quick, but don’t hurry.”

“Will has this really unique style, which goes back to the basketball player he is and watching him the court. He’s got this deceptive quickness and under control style about him,” Stimmel said.

The transition to college lacrosse, like the sport itself, is something that cannot be rushed.

“Minnesota lacrosse is much different than Division I, no doubt. It was a hard transition for sure, things move much faster, but we have a great coaching staff and great leaders, so that made it easier,” Foster said.

 Graduate student attack Garrett Moya said Foster isn’t a “well-rounded” athlete due to his “crazy balance” but instead is due to Foster’s work ethic.

“He’s an absolute stud lacrosse player. Everything he does is 110% and it shows. We are blessed to have him on the team,” Moya said.

In relation to his style of play, Foster’s development produced a quick (but not hurried) turn-around.

“His development over the fall to returning in the spring, it was very much night and day. He came back a more confident player,” Stimmel. “He didn’t worry about anyone seeing it, or posting it, he just went to work every single day and made himself a better player.”

Foster was initially supposed to play at the midfield position said Stimmel, but due to injuries on the team he was shifted to the starting attack position.

“Will has taken steps towards greatness that he wouldn’t have been able to do if everyone was healthy this year,” Moya said.

Despite playing almost exclusively midfield in the fall, Foster said the change in position means little when competition is big.

“I just love to compete. That’s something my mom and dad really instilled in me. I want to win, and I know everyone else in that locker room does too,” Foster said. “I’m similar both on and off the field. I’m much more of talker, no doubt, so that’s something I carry onto the field.”

Being vocal on the field is one thing. Being in Marquette’s Gold ‘n Blues a capella group is another. Foster tunes into both.

“Lowkey, he is an incredible singer. He’s got some hidden talents there,” Stimmel said.

Hidden until Foster was passed the microphone in “freshman bus karaoke,” Foster said that bus ride was the first chance his teammates got to hear him sing.

“He rocked that Bruno Mars song, ‘Count On Me’, on a bus, with what had to be really bad acoustics. He absolutely crushed it,” Stimmel said. “Just like his lacrosse ability, he is extremely humble.

I would love for him to maybe not try out for American Idol until after he’s done playing lacrosse here (Marquette), but with his redhead-look and personality, I think he’s got a real chance at something special if he wants to take his life in that direction.”

Foster’s teammates often look back on the unexpected moment.

“I got the video of him singing his freshman karaoke, and sometimes when I’m down I’ll just put that on and suddenly I’m in a better mood,” Moya said.

Stimmel, a father of two, soon to be three, said Foster “‘orchestra-tes’ the Marquette offense, dad joke intended.”

All in all, “people want to be around Will,” Stimmel said. Moya also shared how easy it is to gravitate towards Foster.

“He’s someone that makes you smile no matter what, he’s everyone’s best friend,” Moya said.

Within his first season wearing blue and gold, Foster has been averaging a .526 shots on goal percentage and scoring in every game he has started for Marquette. 

Of the six games the Golden Eagles have played so far this season, Foster has started in four. In these four games, Foster has put at least one in the net.

Moya said Foster “is going to be a part of the group that takes Marquette to the next level.”

Though Foster skillfully avoided speaking of his own accomplishments, the dedicated team player provides focus on the bigger picture.

“Right now it’s about getting better each day. As long as we get better every single day and be the best we can be, that what really matters,” Foster said.

From running the Minnesota high-school basketball courts, singing Bruno Mars melodies, to stepping up as a starting D1 lacrosse attacker, “Marquette is blessed to have Foster,” Moya said. And Stimmel sang a similar tune about the young athlete.

“We are very fortunate to have him and that he made the decision to come to Marquette. He has a very bright future, and it’s not just because of his skill or ability, but the type of person he is,” Stimmel said.

This article was written by Ava Mares. She can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter @avamaresMU.