Salisbury’s path to a possible 10th Division III championship could be blocked not only by an opponent, but also perhaps injuries.
Senior attackmen Matt Cannone and Tony Mendes are battling leg injuries. Cannone suffered what coach Jim Berkman described as a leg strain suffered in the first quarter of the No. 1 Sea Gulls’ 22-5 rout of then-No. 2 Roanoke on Saturday. And Mendes played sparingly in that contest because of an injured hamstring.
But the offense barely missed a beat. Senior Kyle Quist registered four goals and one assist in place of Cannone, and sophomore Rhett DePol added one goal and one assist while filling in for Mendes.
Cannone and Mendes are expected to be limited when McDaniel visits Sea Gull Stadium on Wednesday, but Berkman said he hasn’t ruled them out for that contest or for Saturday’s road game at No. 15 Gettysburg.
“Obviously, you want to rest them, but by the same token, you need to get a little game in them, too,” he said Monday. “Playing at game speed is a little different from playing in practice. We’re obviously not going to do anything that’s going to jeopardize their healing, but if they can play a little bit, I think it’s just good to get out there – even if it’s just for our man-up team – and get the ball spinning around and get the feel for that. But if they’re not ready, Kyle and Rhett will be ready to step in for them.”
Senior Cory Nowak, who had joined senior Sam Bradman and junior Ryan Clarke as the first midfield, is dealing with a cyst that burst in his knee, causing considerable swelling. Berkman said the swelling has lessened, but Nowak will likely sit out against McDaniel. Senior Lantz Carter could fill Nowak’s spot on the first midfield.