Postscript from Maryland vs. Syracuse
If junior Brian Phipps did indeed tear the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee late in the first quarter of the Terps’ 11-6 loss to Syracuse in a NCAA tournament quarterfinal Saturday, this begs the question: who will start in the net when the 2010 season begins?
Surgery and rehabilitation for ACL injuries can take eight to 12 months with some athletes who have endured the procedure saying that they didn’t fully recover until 18 months had passed.
Phipps will most likely miss fall ball sessions later this year, and he could be 50-50 when Maryland’s season opens. Even if he does return by then, how effective will he be?
So who’s next? Jason Carter, who started eight games, isn’t an option because he will have graduated. Mark White, a sophomore who red-shirted this season, is on the roster and word is that he’s a talent-in-waiting. The Terps will also welcome incoming freshman Niko Amato from La Salle (Pa.), who was recently named to the Under Armour All-American Boys North team.
Update at 10:30 a.m.: Saw early Sunday morning that Phipps made ESPN’s SportsCenter – which wasn’t a good thing. ESPN compared his injury to, among others, when former Washington Redskins quarterback Gus Frerotte head-butted a wall during a game and former Tampa Bay Buccaneers kicker Martin Gramatica tore his ACL after celebrating a successful field goal. To me, that appeared a little harsh because Frerotte and Gramatica were both professional athletes. Phipps, on the other hand, is an amateur playing a collegiate sport without making a paycheck from it.
* Syracuse coach John Desko isn’t sure whether sophomore goalie John Galloway (flu) will be available for the No. 2 seed and reigning national champion’s semifinal Saturday in Foxborough, Mass., but if Alex Cavalieri plays the way he did in Saturday’s 11-6 win against Maryland, the Orange may not have to worry.
The junior made 14 saves and more than a handful were of the point-blank variety. Cavalieri’s play in his first career start was of particular delight to Desko.
"It’s something that every coach tells somebody in Alex’s position, how important his position is," he said. "Sometimes these guys never get a chance to show it. So I think from a coaching standpoint, although you never want a player to get sick or hurt, for it to happen and for Alex to get a chance to perform, it kind of validates everything we’ve been talking about."
* Maryland had success running its big-little sets with sophomores Grant Catalino and Ryan Young in the second quarter, but coach Dave Cottle pointed out that the offense stalled because the unit tried to attack from behind the net in the second half when Syracuse made adjustments after halftime.
"What it did was it made us pretty one-dimensional," Cottle said. "We were doing it all from behind."
* The Terps had just two goalies – Phipps and Carter – on their roster. So what would have happened if Carter had drawn a penalty during Saturday’s contest and had to sit a spell?
"Then we would’ve had to put a middie in the goal," Cottle said with a smirk.
Asked whom that midfielder would have been, Cottle said it would have been junior Bryn Holmes. "He was told he was the third-string goalie in the middle of the second quarter," Cottle said.
* The Terps’ attack accounted for just one goal (freshman Joe Cummings) and two assists (sophomore Ryan Young). Junior Will Yeatman and sophomore Travis Reed were shut out. ... Maryland fell to 3-10 against the No. 2 seed. The Terps last beat a No. 2 seed in 1991 when they toppled Brown, 16-13. ... Syracuse is 26-2 in the quarterfinal round and has advanced to 25 consecutive final fours. The Orange’s last loss in the quarterfinals occurred in 1981 when Syracuse lost to North Carolina, 13-6.