Editor’s Note: Please welcome Sean Christman to CAC to the ‘CAC! Sean will be writing about the Centennial Conference primarily, and his first post is a deeper look into the Franklin & Marshall Diplomats.
The Franklin and Marshall Diplomats, from Lancaster, PA, have been quietly having their best season in recent years. The #14 Diplomats, coached by Todd Cavallaro, have the chance to be a major spoiler in the Centennial Conference in 2013.
F&M’s Women’s lacrosse team has been consistently ranked as a Top 20 team in the past, while the men’s team has had their struggles. The ranking of 14th is the highest the Diplomats have been ranked since their ranking of 17th in 2005, according to Laxpower.com. The team was also ranked 18th at one point last year, finishing at 10-5.
F&M’s biggest rival is perennial powerhouse Gettysburg, with the rivalry game being the biggest of the year for the Diplomats. The Bullets of Gettysburg won last year’s contest, 7-5. F&M also battles Dickinson every year, winning last year’s contest in OT. The Centennial Conference is always competitive, and this year is no different. This year, F&M has defeated #4 Washington College, Elmira, Kenyon, Susquehanna, Scranton, Muhlenberg, McDaniel, and Ursinus so far. They play Gettysburg on April 24th.
Gone is the one-two punch F&M had at the faceoff X, as Rob Rumer and Andrew Setian have graduated. Mike Sanzone has taken the job in stride, going 5-9 in an overtime win vs Scranton.
Offensively, the Diplomats return Jamie McCulloch, who has been scoring a lot this year. They also bring back Jordan Barr, both of which have extremely hard shots.
Junior Cameron Setian returns in goal, and has done well so far this season, turning away 12 shots in the Scranton game. Scott Beury anchors the defense against a very strong schedule of offensive opponents. The young F&M defense needs to step up, with more freshman than upperclassmen.
With a tough conference to play in, and a very difficult out of conference schedule (Lynchburg, Washington and Lee), it will be interesting to see how the season ends up for the Franklin & Marshall Diplomats. Is this the year they make the NCAAs and create some serious waves?