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.
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While the town of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania is historic in it’s own right, the Gettysburg College Bullets have been a constant force in the lacrosse world, especially in recent years.
Though the team has always done well, men’s lacrosse has seen a surge in the past couple of years. In 2005 and 2006, the team was ranked 4th in the country. In 2007, they moved up to #2. The team has consistently been ranked in the Top 20, with lots of Top 5 rankings. Last year saw them defeat Ohio Wesleyan in the NCAA tournament, 7-4, before falling to Stevenson 13-6.
Nick Avedisian returned this year as the faceoff man for the Bullets, winning 123-232, or 53% of the draws he took last year. Look for a higher win percentage from this senior as this year continues and Gburg tries to make a deep run into the playoffs.
Ryan Fumai returns at midfield, and he is a quick midfielder with an explosive style of play. He finished third on the team in goals last year. Second team all-Centennial Conference sophomore Bijan Firouzan is also be back on the midfield. Junior attackman Martin Manilla was last year’s leading goal scorer, and will look to have a repeat performance this year. The few upperclassmen on Gettysburg’s roster need to lead a relatively young offense full of sophomores.
This year’s defensive starters are Phil Thompson, Alex Lanza, and Matt Canter. Lanza played in a reserve role last year, seeing action in nine games with 3 caused turnovers against Swarthmore. Canter is a quick senior who also has the ability to play LSM, and Thompson, who saw action in every game last year as a backup, is now a guy who has to help lead the defense.
Between the pipes for Gettysburg is Jon Maddalone, a junior. Maddalone has the athleticism to make some ridiculous saves. Maddalone has played well, but inexperience has caused some troubles for the 7-5 Bullets, who lost to #2 Dickinson 12-10 on April 10th, and beat Ursinus on the 13th.
This team, coached by Hank Janczyk, has the ability to go deep in to the NCAA tournament. A highly talented squad, the Gettysburg Bullets did well to bounce back from the Dickinson loss and get back on track vs Ursinus. It will be very interesting to see how the rest of the season plays out, and to see if Gettysburg can get past the second round of the tournament.
Gettysburg’s next big game is against WAC, on April 20th. WAC just beat Salisbury. Should be stellar!