Maryland, Loyola, Ohio State and Delaware mix it up.

Maryland, Loyola, Ohio State and Delaware mix it up.

Maryland, Loyola, Ohio State and Delaware mix it up.

Maryland, Loyola, Ohio State and Delaware mix it up.

College Park, MD - The Delaware Blue Hens, Loyola Greyhounds, Ohio State Buckeyes and Maryland Terps got the spring started with back-to-back scrimmages in College Park today. In below freezing weather, this foursome got started on the spring lacrosse road. As with all fall and preseason contests, results should be taken with a grain of salt, because it is truly one of the few times that the coaches main focus is not on the score at the end of the game. It is a chance for coaches to try combinations of players, different offensive or defensive sets, find out if those recruits have the same ability they showed in high school against college athletes, and to work the kinks out before the season really gets rolling.

This isn’t to say any of them take it lightly. All teams played hard despite being weighed down by snazzy Under Armour sweats. The biggest story, is a rather recent one, the transfer of Will Yeatman to Maryland. It was the first competitive NCAA lacrosse game Yeatman has played since eventual champion Hopkins knocked off Notre Dame on May 12th, 2007. Some have questioned how the 6’6”, 260-lb Yeatman will fit in with a Maryland attack that returns three sophomore starters from last year (Ryan Young, Travis Reed and Grant Catalino). With Reed recovering from a knee injury and used sparingly, Yeatman saw plenty of action. Watching the scrimmages, you would be surprised that Yeatman has only had a couple of weeks practicing with this crew. There doesn’t appear to have been much of a transition for the lefty, as he comfortably controlled X and created some opportunities for the Terps. He did have a little trouble hitting the net at times, but give this group some time together and it will be a scary offensive unit.

In the first game, Delaware and Maryland played a hard-fought game. With no scoreboard, it appeared that Delaware snuck away with a one or two goal win. The Terps controlled the pace for most of the game, but Delaware capitalized on the opportunities they had and held on. On the other field, Ohio State pulled out a close one over Loyola.

In the second set of games, Maryland ran all over Loyola. They stuck the opportunities they couldn’t seem to finish against Delaware. A run towards the end of the first half put them comfortably in the lead so that they could go deep into their roster for the second half. Loyola seemed to have trouble matching up with Maryland’s athletic defense. Their ball-control offense didn’t seem to ever get comfortable.

As Loyola players do not wear their normal numbers, individual player performances were hard to track. The d-man wearing number 44 (another website said this was junior Steve Dirks) had a solid performance covering Yeatman. While giving up substantial size he played very smart by not going for takeaway checks and doing his best to use his body to not get beat when Yeatman tried to back him in. It was a solid job against a player that naturally creates mismatches. Loyola also had a decent day at the faceoff circle.

Ohio State looked solid in both scrimmages. Syracuse transfer Peter Coluccini played well in cage for Ohio State giving new head coach Nick Myers a tough decision in trying to replace honorable mention All-American Stefan Schroder with either Coluccini or junior Brandon Freeman.

Delaware had some bright moments on the day. On the whole they did pretty well at the faceoff circle with junior Tommy Lee and a couple of others. On the defensive side, the Blue Hens will miss three-year starter in goal Tommy Scherr. However, sophomore captain Noah Fossner had a very good game against the Terps and will need to continue to do that to minimize the loss of Scherr. The defense as a whole seemed to struggle with Ohio State’s athletic ability and run-and-gun style. Duke transfer Josh Coveleski, using his fifth year at Delaware, had a huge game against former ACC foe Maryland by notching four goals.

All-in-all the teams had a chance to get quality looks at what this year might bring and figure out what they can fine-tune before the games start for real. For Delaware and Ohio State, that comes next Saturday when they host St. Joseph’s and Detroit Mercy, respectively. While Maryland and Loyola have two weeks before they host Presbyterian and Notre Dame.

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    by (#208891) on 1/31/09 @10:48PM
the pictures were excellent but i think that you could take a few more goalie pictures.
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RE: pics
    by (#211116) on 2/01/09 @2:44AM
Actually, I thought there was a ton of quality shots for the keepers, so props on that.
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    by (#78222) on 2/01/09 @11:02AM
How many places on one player can Under Armor stick their logo???
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Well lets see
    by (#118585) on 2/01/09 @1:55PM
They dont make equipment, so thats out. But, it could go on a players socks, shoes, sweat top (or jacket) and sweat bottom (or shorts), jersey (or pinnie), and if they really wanted to stick a sticker on the helmet. So, I would say 6? Is that the right answer?
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Loyola D #44
    by (#211338) on 2/03/09 @8:57AM
Yes, this is Steve Dirks, who played well against Yeatman. Former NJ player of the year from Mt. Lakes.

He really likes spirited hiking in the mountains in Vail.
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Tony Mendes??
    by (#21644) on 2/04/09 @2:17PM
Any idea what happened to the Terps Tony Mendes? Did he transfer, flunk out, get hurt? He was well on his way to becoming a contributor for the Terps, but he's not even mentioned anywhere.
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    by (#78222) on 2/04/09 @7:34PM
is out of MD and has not rematriculated.
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