2013 Men's Lacrosse Season Preview
SWARTHMORE, Pa. - There is excitement surrounding the Swarthmore College men's lacrosse program heading into the 2013 season, as the Garnet appear poised for a big step forward after losing only seven seniors and returning six of its nine leading scorers from a year ago.
Under the guidance of head coach Pat Gress (18th season, Towson '91), Swarthmore is coming off a 2012 season in which it made progress, finishing with an improved 5-10 (2-6) record. The progress was seen in a win against NCAA playoff team Eastern as well as an agonizingly close loss to NCAA playoff team Gettysburg.
If Swat has any thoughts of moving up in the tough Centennial Conference – one of the top conferences in Division III men's lacrosse -- it will rest on the performances of a deep and talented midfield. The offense, led by senior co-captain midfielder Wes Marcik, junior attackman Jonathan Molloy, and sophomore Ian Lukaszewicz will be plenty potent. Lukaszewicz was the Garnet's points leader last year with 25, and led the team with eight assists, while Molloy paced the Garnet attack with a team-leading 20 goals. Also returning for the Garnet is junior Daniel Kowalyshyn (ten goals, five assists) and senior co-captain Steve Selverian (11 goals, two assists), and junior Brendan Conway (seven goals, five assists).
The Garnet defense will be led by junior Geli Carabases and senior Michael Girardi. Carabases led the the team last year in ground balls (40) and caused turnovers (28), while Girardi is another strong defensive threat (18 caused turnovers). Several other players are fighting for playing time on a defense that last season caused 133 turnovers (3rd CC), let in only 14 man-up goals, and cleared the ball 79.6% of the time.
Perhaps the biggest question heading into the season for the Garnet is who come out on top in the ever-ensuing battle for the starting goaltending position. Junior Jonathan Cohen is the lead candidate, after recording a .500 save percentage in just over 70 minutes last year. He will face competition for the job from sophomore Callen Rain and freshman R.J. Tischler.
Once again in 2013, the Garnet will play a grueling schedule facing some of the top teams in the nation, including four ranked in the Lacrosse Magazine and USILA pre-season Top 20 polls. The Garnet will open the 2012 slate with a trip to Eastern on February 23 (2:00). The first home game of the season will come in a March 2 matchup with 320-rival Widener. The Garnet then travel to Southern California for Spring Break, contesting with Whittier (March 13) and Keene St. (March 15). Centennial play opens on March 23 against Ursinus.