Shawn Nadelen’s frustration is still ongoing and it’s not limited to Towson’s season-opening 9-7 loss to High Point last Friday.
The second-year coach was hoping that the embarrassment of being the footnote in the Panthers’ first-ever victory would light a fire under his players, but he said he’s still looking for that spark as the Tigers welcome No. 5 Johns Hopkins in Towson’s home opener this Saturday.
“A little bit of my frustration is that I haven’t seen a lingering anger,” Nadelen said Wednesday afternoon. “The guys at times, I feel like they feel sorry for themselves with regards to not performing at a high level and thinking that people might feel sorry for them. But that’s not the case at all. I know Hopkins is not going to come in and take us lightly, and nobody in the country is going to care that we lost to High Point. It was a game that we were fully capable of winning hat we didn’t do, and that’s been some of my frustration, how we’ve responded. I haven’t seen a lot of anger or frustration or some edge or attitude from our team in the past three days in practice. I was hoping that we would respond and not seeing that and not seeing our guys respond that way has been very difficult for me and worrisome.”
Asked if he was concerned about the team’s mindset, Nadelen said, “Absolutely. I don’t think we’ve had a good week at all of preparation in terms of our focus and energy and execution. We’ve had some severe lapses, and I’ve communicated that with our team. There just seems to be a total lack of accountability within the team and for each other and for their actions. It’s not going to cut it with the rest of our schedule, and obviously, Hopkins is the next opponent on our schedule, and our team really needs to figure out how to get back to play Towson lacrosse.”
Senior goalkeeper Andrew Wascavage said he talked to Nadelen and tried to assure him that the players are as unhappy as their coach is.
“He wants more energy out of us,” Wascavage said. “… I think it’s more of shock that we lost that game. We’re definitely angry and fired out to come out this weekend.”
Retooling the starting lineup is always an option for Nadelen, but he said that he won’t make any rash decisions.
“If we do, it’s not to spark the team,” he said. “I think if we make lineup changes, it’s more necessary with regards to matchup issues or different ways we want things to work within our offense and defense. It’s not to send a message to a guy or anything like that. After our first game, we assessed our players, and everybody on the field had opportunities to make plays. We made some of them, but we didn’t make a lot of them. So we’re not going to bench anybody just after the first game. Everybody has shown the ability to make those plays in the past, and our team’s fully capable of doing that. We just have to perform.”