College Lacrosse Offseason Report: UMBC
After a slow start to 2018, UMBC upset then #1 ranked Albany, a team that tore through the rest
of the league throughout the first half of the year en route to giving the Danes their first and only
America East loss of the year. Second year head coach Ryan Moran and his young squad
struggled throughout the year, and compiled a 5-8 (3-3 America East) record throughout 2018.
UMBC was a team away from the four team conference tournament, and showed potential as a
young squad that they can carry over into next spring.
(You can discuss this on the BSL Board here.)
The UMBC defense was the foundation of their team, led by senior Billy O’Hara, who had 23
CTs and 34 GBs. They led the NCAA in goals against, with 7.8 goals allowed per game, and
freshman goalie Tommy Linger posted a 54% save percentage. With the graduation of their top
offensive players the year before, that opened the door for some young guys to contribute in a
big way. Junior Billy Nolan stepped up and contributed 20 goals and 14 assists, while freshman
Stephen Zichelli had 17 goals and 10 assists on the year.
But along with some of the good that happened, UMBC took some hits throughout the season,
the first coming with them ending 5th in the America East. This result stings, because the
Retrievers were on the brink of the playoffs, even after losing many contributors to injury early in
the year. Freshman attackman Trevor Patschorke tore his ACL after scoring 9 goals and dishing
out 2 assists in four games. Attackman Ryan Frawley played seven games and had 9 goals and
an assist before hurting his thumb. Senior Max Haldeman missed the first six games of the year,
and came back to have 4 goals and an assist on the year. This hurts an offense that scores only
6.9 goals per game and finishes in last in Division 1 in that category.
Along with goals per game,UMBC finished in last statistically in man up percentage, GBs per game and faceoff percentage. This coming spring, the Retrievers do not change very much besides on the defensive side.
They will lose two starters in LSM Billy O’Hara (34 GBs, 23 CTs) and defenseman John
Tornabene (23 GBs, 13 CTs). Along with that they lose a backup goalie in David Pisanic and a
midfielder in Max Haldeman (3g, 1a). Young guns will once again step up and will the Retrievers
to push towards a birth in the America East playoffs this coming spring. They have incoming
freshmen from some solid programs on the East Coast (particularly Maryland) and an
attackman from north of the border as well. Look for a few of these guys to make an impact
early in their career, as UMBC will rely on youth once again this coming year.
Incoming Freshmen (compiled from team roster)
Taylor Bohanan, M, St. Mary’s (MD)
Keith Dukes, M, Dematha (MD)
Brandon Galloway, M, Kent Island (MD)
Kenny Cronin, M, Jupiter (FL)
Colin Hoff, M, Southern Lehigh (PA)
Jack Thomas, A, Severna Park (MD)
Nate Braniff, A, Hill Academy (CAN)
P.J. Argiros, FO, Kellenberg Memorial (NY)
Andrew Taylor, LSM, Fallston (MD)
Steven Cornwell, LSM, Paul IX (VA)
Frank Blazer, D, Oakdale (MD)
Jack Morton, G, Boys’ Latin (MD)
Although they may not be losing too many players in terms of depth, the skill level is one that
does not match up with the premier programs of college lacrosse. Look for the
Retrievers to compete in the America East once again, and look for a potential breakthrough
into the conference tournament – if the younger guys step up on offense and defense, and
if a consistent faceoff man is found. The early out of conference slate will be important for
the Retrievers to get guys experience playing in big games, in preparation for the conference
season to come mid March.
Stay up to date with my last couple Offseason Overviews when I
recap Mount St Mary’s next week, followed by the D3 teams that surround the Baltimore area.
Sam Kuhn currently is the graduate assistant for the men's lacrosse program at Heidelberg University in Tiffin, Ohio and is working to complete his Masters of Business Administration in 2020. Sam graduated from the College of Wooster in 2018, where he received his Bachelors Degree in English and played lacrosse as well. In his four years, Sam was a two time All-NCAC selection, a first team All-Region selection in 2018, and surpassed 100 goals for his career, one of seven members in program history to do so. Sam has interned with Inside Lacrosse, and wrote for the sports section of The Wooster Voice.