JoJo Ostrander has emerged as Towson's top defenseman

Sophomore has been shadowing opponents' top attackman, including Massachusetts' Will Manny, who scored just once in Tigers' win last Saturday

April 10, 2013|By Edward Lee, The Baltimore Sun

As notable as Towson’s 9-5 victory over Massachusetts last Saturday was for junior attackman Devin Grimaldi’s first career hat trick and first four-point display, the win also showcased the ability of JoJo Ostrander.

The 6-foot, 175-pound sophomore defenseman limited Minutemen senior attackman Will Manny to just one goal on four shots and zero assists. Manny, a Tewaaraton Award finalist last season, may not be at full strength after sitting out five games because of a broken thumb, but Ostrander’s performance earned the praise of Tigers coach Shawn Nadelen.

“JoJo’s been playing our No. 1 attack opponent all season, and I think he’s been pretty consistent for us,” Nadelen said Monday. “I think he’s done a good job of neutralizing the other team’s best dodging threat. At times, other guys on the defense have helped him out – whether it was late slides or fake slides. But when JoJo was on Will, we did a good job of steering him away from the opportunities that Will likes to get to and spots on the field that he likes to get to. Personally, I think [Ostrander] did a great job with that all game.”

Ostrander ranks second on the team in caused turnovers with 12 and is tied for seventh in ground balls with 17. Ostrander, a second-year full-time starter who was named to the Colonial Athletic Association All-Rookie team, has room to develop, according to Nadelen.

“He’s given us confidence that he can guard some of the top attackmen in the country and do a decent job against them,” Nadelen said. “He’s had their number in games, and they’ve had his number in games at times, but he’s done a real good job of getting his confidence. I’d like to see him continue to work on his off-ball play. Being a good cover defenseman is great, but there’s a lot more to playing defense than just that. So that’s what we’re going to continue to work with him on.”

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