ESPN's Paul Carcaterra evaluates Loyola's quarterfinal win

Former Syracuse All-American midfielder offers thoughts on what he liked and what he didn't like in Greyhounds' 10-9 victory over Denver

May 23, 2012|By Edward Lee

ESPN analyst Paul Carcaterra was the sideline reporter for No. 1 seed Loyola’s 10-9 win against unseeded Denver on Saturday. On Monday, he offered what he liked and what he didn’t like in the Greyhounds’ victory in the NCAA tournament’s quarterfinal round.

Thursday will feature Carcaterra’s assessment of Maryland’s 11-5 upset of No. 2 seed Johns Hopkins, but here is what he thought of Loyola’s win.

What Carcaterra liked: “I loved Loyola’s pace. I think they’ve changed their approach and the way they attack in one year more than any other team I can remember in recent time, and I respect that so much. They’re fun to watch, and they’re difficult to defend. They got a couple transfers in [junior midfielders] Chris Layne and Sean O’Sullivan, and now they’re attacking from up top with [junior midfielder] Davis Butts. Those three guys put a lot of pressure on defenses, and when you slide from them, you have a lefty in [fifth-year senior attackman] Eric Lusby and a righty in [junior attackman] Mike Sawyer that are just lethal shooters. They’re a team that pushes in transition, and they take chances. They’re all over groundballs, they play with emotion and a lot of energy. So the full-field approach to offense that I saw from Loyola, I really liked. I’m also super-impressed with their midfield dodgers. I think that was the difference in the game because they freed up guys like Eric Lusby and gave him scoring opportunities. There’s just so much to like about Loyola. I think people are impressed with them and understand the success that they’ve had this season. But no one’s really putting them in a position to win this thing, and there’s no reason why they can’t.”

What he didn’t like: “Defensively – which includes their goaltender [sophomore Jack Runkel] – are they going to be able to make the stops necessary to win this thing? As much as offense can take you to new heights as a program, you’re now in the Final Four, and you’re going to have to defend. I think that’s the biggest question for Loyola.”

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