Top Division I teams

DIVISION I LACROSSE PREVIEW

February 26, 1993|By Marc Bouchard, Doug Brown, Mike Preston and Bill Tanton

Army

Coach: Jack Emmer, 10th season, 73-51.

1992 record: 10-4.

Outlook: The Cadets haven't been in the NCAA playoffs for five years, and, says Emmer: "That's a long time." That may change (( this spring. Army looks improved. "We have a senior group," says Emmer, "and I think we'll be able to compete with the teams on our schedule. We scrimmaged Syracuse last week. I thought we did well just to be able to run up and down the field with them." The entire attack -- Steve Heller, Phil Mandry and Chad Allen -- returns. All are seniors. Eric Waltz, another senior (called first class at West Point), is one of the best midfielders in the country. "Eric," says Emmer, "is experienced and aggressive." No one argues with that. Adam Silva and Sean Turner lead the defense.In the goal for the third year is Rick Aguilar, a junior from Rochester. Emmer expects his team to get out of the gate fast when it opens March 6 at Cornell. Despite wintry weather, Army's Michie Stadium has been plowed all along. The lacrosse team hasn't missed a day.

Brown

Coach: Peter Lasagna, first season, 0-0.

1992 record: 12-4.

Outlook: When longtime Brown coach Dom Starsia moved on to Virginia last summer, his assistant, Lasagna, became coach of the Bruins. It's his first head coaching job. Brown can't do a whole lot better than it did last year, going 12-4 and winning its NCAA tournament first-round game impressively at Loyola. North Carolina then eliminated Brown in the quarterfinals. Graduated from that Brown team is attackman Daren Lowe, who was Division I Player of the Year. Returning, however, is the man Lowe fed -- Oliver Marti. Another plus for Brown is Andy Towers, who was a first-team All-America midfielder in '91. He sat out last year. He's back now. "Andy Towers is 6-4, weighs 200 and can run people over," Lasagna says. So the Bruins, having graduated nearly 500 career points, will have a void on attack, where the team is young. The goalie, replacing Calvert Hall product Pat Flynn, who graduated, is Jay Stalfort.

Duke

Coach: Mike Pressler, third season, 14-12.

1992 record: 7-7.

Outlook: Duke is coming off its first NCAA tournament appearance in school history, but loses its top four scorers from last year's team. The Blue Devils will have to rely on their defense, which returns three starters from last year's squad (seniors Joe Proud and Derek Thompson and junior Chris Affolter), as well as All-ACC goalie Carter Hertzberger. The midfield will be led by seniors Jim Mannino, Duke's leading returning scorer with 13 goals and five assists last season, and Andy Droney, who is one of the best faceoff men in the nation. The attack will consist of senior Seth McCullough (12, 1) and juniors Hal Long (13, 1) and Kenny Fasanaro (6, 5). Maryland eliminated Duke, 13-11, in the first round of last year's tournament.

Delaware

Coach: Bob Shillinglaw, 15th season, 117-105.

1992 record: 8-7.

Outlook: The Blue Hens lose top-scorer Tom Stanziale (45 points in 1992), but sophomore Anthony DiMarzo, who had 14 goals and 27 assists in his freshman season, and senior John Wunder (33, 6) return on attack. The midfield will be led by junior Tom Stamos (17, 2) and Thad Boyce, a transfer from Herkimer (N.Y.) Junior College who was named the JuCo Player of the Year last season. Junior Jamie Blalock, who played behind Tim Johnson the past two years, will be the starting goalie. Tom Rusy (43 ground balls last year) will lead an inexperienced defense. Delaware hasn't made an appearance in the NCAA tournament since 1984.

Johns Hopkins

Coach: Tony Seaman, 3rd season, 16-9.

1992 record: 8-5.

Outlook: Johns Hopkins is expected to challenge for the national championship every year and 1993 will be no different. As usual, the Blue Jays' schedule is the most difficult in the country with Johns Hopkins facing seven of the 12 teams that appeared in the 1992 NCAA tournament. The attack will be the Blue Jays' strength, with Johns Hopkins returning All-Americans Brian Piccola (36 goals, 25 assists) and Terry Riordan (37, 17). The Blue Jays made their biggest improvement at midfield during the off-season, adding speed to the unit with the addition of freshman Milford Marchant (Severn School). Leading the group of returning midfielders are co-captain Steve Vecchione and senior Charlie Speno. The Blue Jays also are expecting a lot of offense from senior Brian Kelly. Senior co-captain Tom Sullivan will anchor a defense that is suspect, especially on the transition. The goalkeeping situation is unsettled with freshman Jonathan Marcus challenging senior John Banks.

Loyola

Coach: Dave Cottle, 11th season, 88-39.

1992 record: 8-4.

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