Throw in senior attackman Conor Dalton and junior sidekick Devin McNamara (Villanova), a prolific scorer, and the Dons should have enough firepower to keep pace with other high-profile offenses in the conference.

Last year, Loyola managed as many as 10 goals only four times in 18 tries, which, in turn, put more pressure on the defense.

And that makes ramping up the offense an even more critical prospect for Crawford's club.


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2011 record: 16-0

Coach Jonny Class's quote: "Last year, they graduated eight seniors from a very strong team. We are pretty much in a rebuilding stage."

Breakdown: It won't be easy for the Saints to repeat as MIAA C Conference champions with only four returning starters.

On top of that, Lutheran hired a new coach in Class, a newcomer to the sport.

Class, however, brought in four experienced assistants to help him run the program, including Chris Michel (St. Paul's) and Alex Shipley (Joppatowne).

"I think we have one of the best coaching staffs around," Class said. "They also have coached rec and club ball. I would like to say I surrounded myself with greatness."

The staff will be working closely with a core group that features senior attacker Steve Licata (Rosemont College), senior midfielders Dave Dooley and Scotty Sweigart (Shenandoah University) and senior defender John Nunes (Concordia University Wisconsin).

"Everything is built around those guys," Class said.

Dooley and Sweigart lead the solid midfield that also includes senior Dylan Gerry.

"Our midfield is very athletic," Class said. "They know how to score."

Junior Steve Bachman, a transfer from Fallston, should give the attack a boost.

Although junior Zack Gruber is unproven in goal, Class raves about the potential of the first-year player.

"He has come a long way in a short period of time," the coach said. "His stickwork is pretty darn good."

St. Paul's

2011 record: 14-7

Coach Rick Brocato's quote: "We only have five players returning who played meaningful roles for us last year."