By Chris Goldberg
Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 3/10/08
This may be the year the Cabrini College men’s lacrosse team cracks the NCAA Division III elite.
The Cavaliers have won seven straight Pennsylvania Athletic Conference championships and last year went 15-3, falling to Ithaca in the first round of the NCAAs. Cabrini finished 10th in the final NCAA poll, its highest ever.
Couple that with the fact 29 players and four all-conference choices return to a team that already is 3-0 and has beaten highly-ranked Roanoke College. The Cavs are currently ranked 10th in the USILA Division III Coaches Poll.
Coach Steve Colfer, who has a 94-26 record in his eight years at Cabrini, boasts four returning all-league picks: Sophomore attacker Casey Grugan (Ridley), junior attacker Scott Reimer (Downingtown West) junior middie Matt Conaway (West Chester East) junior long-stick middie Jeff Moore (Springfield-Delco).
Reimer scored 45 goals last year while Grugan had 44 goals and 27 assists. Conaway had 21 goals and Moore led the team with 56 groundballs. The attack also features sophomore Rich Romanelli (28 goals).
Also at midfield are seniors Pat Jenkins and Matt McKinney (Ridley) and juniors Mike Dolente (Spring-Ford), B.J. Kletcheck (Roman Catholic) and Kevin Fahey. The defense also features Joe Monroe (Marple Newtown), and junior Mike McFarlane (Roman Catholic), sophomore Steve Heaps and freshman Coleman Till (Downingtown East).
Junior Kevin Chenoweth is the goalie and freshman attacker Paul Skulski (Garnet Valley) has cracked the lineup
Elsewhere in the Pennsylvania Athletic Conference:
Eastern – The Eagles made their first playoff appearance last year and set school marks for wins (seven) and league wins (four). The midfield is a strength, led by junior Ben O’Donnell, senior Pat Dempsey (Marple Newtown), sophomore Andrew Minnick (Cardinal O’Hara), junior Michael Ryan (Souderton) Also key this year are junior attacker Nick Mandia (Souderton) and junior goalie Zach Rivest.
Neumann – The Knights struggled through a 1-13 campaign (1-6 in PAC). Key returnees include junior goalie Jake Boulay, senior middie Jason Kahn, sophomore middie Lewis Nixon, sophomore attacker Kyle Sheckler (Interboro) and attacker Dan Gregg (Cardinal O’Hara).
Immaculata – The Mighty Macs were winless (0-11) in their first season of play, and should benefit from a year of experience. One strength is in goal where sophomore Andrew Sim (Interboro) returns. The attack is led by junior brothers Alan Lorentz (Upper Darby) and Geoff Lorentz (Upper Darby) and Tom Hartney (Interboro) while freshman Brendan Dinneen (Archbishop Wood) has impressed. Senior Casey Grandelli (Upper Darby) and sophomore Jim Baranello (Haverford High) lead the defense.
Haverford – The Fords (8-6, 5-3) are off to a superb 3-0 start, including a victory over then No. 4 Lynchburg. That vaulted the Fords to No. 9 in the USILA Poll for March 10. The team will look to sophomore Brian Fleishhacker (16 goals in first three games) and senior Mike Distler at attack, and senior middies Dean Granoff (Friends’ Central) and Matt Thorne-Fitzgerald (Strath Haven) at midfield, and seniors Joel Censer, Mike Handel and John Magovern. Senior Jake Mendlinger is a fixture in goal. Three freshmen, defender Scott Kelley (Strath Haven), midfielder Kiley Norton and attacker Max Hjelm (Conestoga) have made an early impact.
Ursinus College – The Bears went 9-5 last year, 4-4 in the conference. They are led by senior middle Dane Mangin (Archbishop Wood), the school’s first All-American. The attack is led by Jason Orlando (Springfield-Delco), Eric Farris (Pottsgrove), Pat Nagle and Brian Boorse. The defense features Vince Redko, Eric Hoffman (Pennridge) and Kevin Wallace (Avon Grove) while Tony Aquilino (Archbishop Wood) is the goalie.
Swarthmore – The Garnet (5-7, 2-6 last year) defense is anchored by senior goalie Frank Mazzucco and senior defenders Dan Sartori and Drew Bonessa. The attack is fairly young and features Stelios Wilson, Gavin Musynske and Tyler Bradshaw. Ben Young, Will Predun and Todd Friedman head the midfield.
Middle Atlantic Conference
Widener – The Pioneers (13-6 overall, 7-3 MAC) were picked to win the conference in the preseason coaches poll. They are led by senior attacker Clint Quedenfeld (Central Bucks West), who already has 11 goals in three games and had 18 last year. Senior attacker Brian Stromko (51 goals last year), senior middie Luke Weber (32 goals, 16 assists) and senior attacker Chris Matthews (28 goals, Monsignor Bonner) head the offense while senior Adam Ardary (Springfield-Delco), sophomores Dave Simcox (Ridley) and Dave Politarhos (Ridley) lead the defense.