Review & preview: St. Mary's
Here is the fourth installment of a series that checks in with the seven Division III programs in the state to give a glimpse into the past and the future. Monday, we take a visit with St. Mary’s. (Coach Chris Hasbrouck did not return a few requests for comment.)
The good: For all of the questions that surrounded the Seahawks, the offense was always present and accounted for. The unit averaged 11.2 goals per game this season and reached double digits in goals 10 times. The team’s record in those 10 contests? 9-1. … The attack continued to power the offense. Junior Dennis Rosson (42 goals and 18 assists) was the team’s top playmaker, but he got assistance from sophomores Michael Mules (19, 8), Brendan Oster (12, 7) and junior Chris Becraft (12, 6). Freshman Patrick Mull (7, 25) may have emerged as the best feeder. … Another question mark was answered by freshman Albert Mitchell, who collected a team-best 102 groundballs and won 56.4 percent (177-of-314) of his face-offs. Mitchell adequately replaced All-American specialist Marc DiPasquale, who scooped up 71 groundballs and won 58.9 percent (176-of-299) last season. … Senior long-stick midfielder Ryder Henry (37 groundballs and 25 caused turnovers) was a force on defense. He was named an honorable-mention All American.
The bad: The attack could have used a little more support from the midfield. After senior Ryan Alexander (22, 13), no other midfielder finished with 20 points. Juniors Chris Morihlatko (10, 6) and Bobby Cooke (12, 0) played well at times, but St. Mary’s could use a more consistent showing from the midfield. … Five of the Seahawks’ six losses came at the hands of ranked teams – Stevenson twice, Salisbury, Roanoke and Denison. With the Mustangs and Sea Gulls likely to continue to anchor the Capital Athletic Conference, St. Mary’s will be dealing with ranked adversaries for quite a while.
Personnel changes: Without knowing how many seniors have fifth years of eligibility remaining, it appears that the program will graduate just two starters in Alexander and Henry. Morihlatko and Cooke figure to anchor the first midfield, and a candidate from a pool that includes sophomore Billy Scheurer (5, 2), Mitchell (4, 1) and sophomore John Dehm (3, 0) could earn a promotion. … The loss of Henry is substantial, but sophomore long-stick midfielder Peter Windsor registered 47 groundballs and 23 caused turnovers. Then again, Windsor could be moved to close defense where he would join two starters in junior Sean Hatley (21 groundballs, 12 caused turnovers) and sophomore Eric Heisner (14 groundballs).
Forecast for 2011: Clearing. The Seahawks will use this offseason to address the concerns in the midfield. But with just two starters departing, the team has many positives returning. The attack should be strong, and the defense – with Hatley and Heisner – could be even better with junior goalkeeper Stu Wheeler, who posted a 9.21 goals-against average and a .548 save percentage. Their biggest obstacle is that they belong to a conference that includes Salisbury and Stevenson.