MILTON, Mass. – The 2016 season for Curry College men's lacrosse has the potential to be the best in the past four years. The past few seasons the Colonels have competed against some of the best squads in New England. This year they are comprised of primarily underclassmen and have the luxury of returning an experienced veteran core in addition to an influx of new talent. This blend of eager youth and veteran leadership has the squad feeling optimistic and poised to push for a berth in the Commonwealth Coast Conference playoffs in 2016.
On offense the 2016 version of Curry Lacrosse will return nine out of its ten leading scorers from 2015. This includes leading goal scorer and point getter junior Jack McMenomey, leader in man-up tallies junior Joseph Grogan, and leader in shooting percentage junior Brandon Flaim. Rounding out the Colonels seasoned junior class are proven scoring threats Kevin Vincens, Cole Franklin and Dominick Marcella. All will be crucial towards securing the Colonels first conference playoff berth since 2010.
Leading the way on offense is senior captain Joseph Shea. Shea looks ready to build off a solid season offensively in 2015 and produce career-highs in his final season as a Colonel. His twenty-eight ground balls last year and taking home the team's MVP award in 2015 are a testament to his hard-working style of play, which will hopefully be infectious for the offensive unit as a whole in the upcoming season.
These already established scoring threats will be bolstered by a potent class of sophomores that are on the cusp of breaking out: Jeffrey Yates, Matthew Serra, Thomas Cashin, and Brendan Strobel. Increased production from this second year group will go a long way, helping solidify the Colonels offense.
At the faceoff "X" the Colonels are set to have one of the strongest units in the Commonwealth Coast Conference. This group is headlined by sophomore Steven Grogan who produced at a clip of 61% in 2015 going 106 for 173. Junior Matthew Boyd who went 50% last year rounds out a unit that in 2015 collectively struck above 50% at the faceoff dot for the first time under head coach Tim Murphy.
In transition this faceoff unit is supported by senior John Koning, senior Will Clancy, senior Tim McNair and junior Nick D'Innocenzo. Collectively their athleticism and grit have made them huge players for the Colonels in the clearing game. This trend will need to continue for the Colonels to find the success they desire in 2016.
Already a strong unit last year, the young Colonels defense looks to build off a 2015 performance that saw them second overall in goals against in the conference and third in caused turnovers. A continued strong groundball game from junior Daniel Wise (37) and sophomore Chris Bronander (44) will be huge in accomplishing this again. The defensive unit will be strengthened by the collective contributions of junior Christian Rappa, sophomore Jack Boillitat, and sophomore Chris McGreevy.
Anchoring the defense will be junior goaltender Shane O'Brien. One of the reasons for the Colonels strong defensive play last year was O'Brien, who was a part of a goaltending tandem that led the Conference in saves last year. O'Brien will hope to build off a 2015 campaign that saw him record an impressive 59.7% save percentage.
The Colonels open up their season on Saturday February 27 at home against the Anna Maria AMCats at the Walter M. Katz Field in Milton, Mass. It will kick off what is sure to be an exciting season for Curry Lacrosse.