Ford, Stevenson awaiting word from NCAA
Stevenson, ranked No. 3 in the latest United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association Coaches poll, overpowered No. 7 Haverford by seven goals Saturday, and the Mustangs did so without one of their top offensive players.
Senior attackman Richie Ford is waiting for the NCAA to approve his application for a fifth year of eligibility, and until then, the Baltimore native and Towson graduate is not permitted to play.
Coach Paul Cantabene said he wasn’t sure when a decision would be made.
“We’ve just got to go by their timeline, and we’re just waiting,” he said. “It’s just one of those things with the NCAA. So we’re just waiting to hear back from them.”
Stevenson started sophomore Tyler Reid in Ford’s place, and the transfer from Fairfield scored twice against the Fords.
“I think it’s a good opportunity for the younger guys to step up,” Cantabene said of Ford’s absence. “We had Tyler Reid step up with two goals this weekend and play well. [Sophomore] Danny Schanne is another guy we’re going to use in the meantime. But it’s an opportunity for them, and that’s why we recruit.”
*In a related matter, the Mustangs’ 11-4 victory was highlighted by the offense’s diversity. The unit got a game-high three goals from senior midfielder Kyle Moffitt, two goals and one assist from junior midfielder Justin Lea, one goal from senior midfielder Jake Stocksdale, and one assist from freshman midfielder Tony Rossi. The attack chipped in with one goal and two assists from senior Jimmy Dailey and two goals from senior Neal Barthelme. “I think we have the diversity not to rely on just one guy to score,” Cantabene said. “We have a lot of guys that can score, and that’s really going to make us tough to defend at times.”
*Junior goalkeeper Ian Bolland made 16 saves against Haverford in his debut as the full-time starter, and his ability to play with the ball out of the cage was a welcomed sight for Cantabene. “What he gave us was a real presence out of the goal,” he said. “He took a shot in the game, he got a few ground balls that we wouldn’t have gotten before, and I think he did a great job not giving up any rebounds. And I thought the defense did a really good job of supporting him. That was a great first go for him.”
*Stevenson still has upcoming contests against No. 1 Tufts, No. 2 Salisbury, No. 4 Cortland, No. 5 Roanoke and No. 10 Lynchburg, but Cantabene was hopeful that Saturday’s convincing win would set a standard for the remainder of the season. “We’ve played a lot of big games, and there are a lot of big games left to play,” he said. “So we really hope that sets the tone for the guys. We’ve got a bunch of motivated guys that want to get better. It was great to get a lot of our new guys into the game and get their legs under them.”