UMBC proactive during bye week

Retrievers shifted focus from opponent to themselves

March 23, 2012|By Edward Lee

A bye week didn’t mean that UMBC bid farewell to lacrosse. In fact, the team spent a good portion of last week and this week focusing internally on their areas of strengths and weaknesses and trying to improve in both areas.

“We really didn’t get away from the game of lacrosse, but when you don’t have to focus on an opponent, you then turn your focus to your team and just getting back to the basics and all that we do,” coach Don Zimmerman said Thursday. “And with spring break in the second half of that, the guys don’t have to go to class, and they’re really just focused on their lacrosse and getting extra rest. So I think it’s been good for us.”

Rust is sometimes a concern when there is an extended break in the schedule, and players grow accustomed to the routine of playing at least one game per week. But Zimmerman said he didn’t think those worries bothered the players.

“In our case, we had a bye, and there was nothing we could really do about it,” he said. “So we just tried to make the best of the situation. I know once they get into the schedule, guys like to play every week, but I think in this case, the guys understood the situation.”

The Retrievers (2-3) will get back into their schedule with a visit from No. 8 Loyola. Saturday night’s game will be the third in eight days for the Greyhounds (7-0), but Zimmerman downplayed the suggestion that they might be fatigued.

“From what I’ve seen from this team, they’re focused, and they’re riding a seven-game winning streak right now,” he said. “We never go into a game thinking that. I have a ton of respect for their coaches and their players, and I’m sure Coach [Charley] Toomey will have their guys ready, and we have to be ready to go out and play our best game of the year.”

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