I bought a good old-fashioned wooden stick last winter for $9. Sticks are not expensive unless you are caught up in the hype and must have the latest, greatest top of the line stick.
I play fine with one of the cheapest sticks on the rack. It is a poor player that needs the crutch of an expensive stick, IMO.
I still play with a Sher-wood 5030 (Coffey Curve) and it's great, but I only use it because I just don't have the skill to justify paying for a $200 stick. Some of my friends do and that's cool. It's like using an expensive driver in golf, sure they'd play fine with lower end equipment but in a competetive setting you need any advantage you can get. I've also got a friend who's got absolutely no shot, but plays with a $250 Warrior stick so it goes both ways.