Sieverts right at home at UM

Ex-Butler player quick to contribute to Terps

Mids lose Nechanicky

Men's Notebook

April 04, 2007|By Gary Lambrecht | Gary Lambrecht,SUN REPORTER

Some days, Jeremy Sieverts wakes up and thinks about walking to another men's lacrosse practice with some of his teammates at Butler University. Then, reality quickly sets in again, and Sieverts remembers he's going to school and playing ball in College Park now.

Maryland's sophomore midfielder did not imagine taking this path to become a Terrapin. But the McDonogh graduate quickly found a way out after Butler informed its players in late January that the school was eliminating its men's lacrosse program. The players at Butler decided they would rather not play out the 2007 season as a lame-duck team.

Within a week, after also looking at chances to transfer to Towson and Delaware, Sieverts found a home at Maryland. And it didn't take long for him to find a place on the Terps' second midfield unit and produce some dividends.

Sieverts ranks fifth on the team in scoring with 10 points, and scored three of his seven goals against UMBC to help No. 10 Maryland beat the Retrievers, 11-7, on March 17.

"It's kind of wild, how I just dropped in," said Sieverts, 6 feet 3, 195 pounds, who said he picked the Terps partly because they lost so many midfielders after last season. "I talked with [Maryland] coach [Dave] Cottle on Saturday [Jan. 27], applied online on Monday, got accepted Tuesday, flew here on Wednesday, got here [to meet with the team] on Thursday, and was in class on Friday."

Cottle said he knew he was getting a good player in Sieverts. But he said Sieverts surprised him with his size and his offensive skills. Over two weeks of practice and a pair of scrimmages, Sieverts earned a second-line spot. Cottle now sees him as the anchor of that group.

"He had to learn on the fly, but he established himself right away," Cottle said. "The downside is we didn't get a chance to work with him in the fall to figure out his strengths and weaknesses. We're learning on the fly. We're getting more comfortable with him."

Mids a man down

Replacing attackman Jon Birsner, the team's best feeder for three seasons, was one of No. 6 Navy's main projects for 2007, and the Midshipmen had found a promising new face in sophomore Bruce Nechanicky. Then, late in the first quarter of Saturday's 10-9 loss at Georgetown, Nechanicky went down with a season-ending knee injury after his foot got caught in the turf while attempting a spin move.

Nechanicky (nine goals, seven assists) will have surgery to repair a torn anterior cruciate ligament.

Navy coach Richie Meade said the candidates to replace Nechanicky include senior David Cohn (Gilman), junior Matt Guido and freshmen Patrick Moran (Severn) and Tim Paul (Loyola).

"Whoever that guy is, he's going to have to do something on Friday night [against Maryland]," Meade said.

Reserved celebration

In the wake of Loyola's huge 11-10 win over Syracuse on Saturday, Greyhounds coach Charley Toomey downplayed the victory - which might not be all that valuable, should the 3-4 Orange continue to struggle and, dare we say, miss the playoffs.

Toomey wants the Greyhounds (5-2) to handle their success the right way. A year ago, after upsetting Georgetown to get back in the NCAA tournament hunt, Loyola promptly lost at Fairfield en route to a 6-6 finish and its fifth straight postseason miss.

Starting with Saturday's game at Rutgers, Toomey wants No. 9 Loyola (3-0 in conference play) to keep its momentum going in the Eastern College Athletic Conference. The league's regular-season winner gets an automatic bid to the NCAAs.

"I'd like to say [beating Syracuse] was a statement win," Toomey said. "But our biggest goal is getting back into the ECAC and not giving anybody [on the tournament selection committee] the opportunity to leave us out."

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