No. 4 Maryland's vacancy on attack would seem to be tailor-made for Tim Rotanz.
Rotanz was an Under Armour All-American attackman at Shoreham-Wading River High School in New York. Under the watchful eye of his father, Tom, who was his high school coach, Rotanz registered 248 goals and 202 assists in his high school career and was rated as the No. 2 freshman attackman by Inside Lacrosse prior to the 2014 season, which was his first with the Terps.
But Rotanz's collegiate career has been plagued by injuries. He missed the first four games of his freshman year because of an unspecified injury and then his sophomore campaign last spring was wiped out by a bout with vertigo that forced him to sit out Maryland's run to the NCAA tournament final in May.
Rotanz is back for his redshirt sophomore year, but a clean bill of health has been a fleeting reality.
"The guy's been a little bit snake-bitten," Terps coach John Tillman said Tuesday. "It's very unique that you lose a guy to vertigo. … Sometimes people don't realize that there are things that happen on the field, but sometimes there are things that you can't really control. He's a high-IQ guy. When you're a coach's son – and his dad is one of the most successful coaches around – his IQ is off the charts. He's usually thinking one play ahead. He's got really good poise, a great skill set. So it's meant a lot to us to have him back on the field. He's another guy that we can play."
The 6-foot-1, 190-pound Rotanz would seem to be a perfect fit on a starting attack that includes juniors Matt Rambo (40 goals and 19 assists in 2015) and Dylan Maltz (11 G, 5 A). Rotanz, who posted three goals and three assists in 13 games including 10 starts as a freshman, has potential, according to Tillman.
"Freshman year is always tough, but we've seen glimpses in practice," he said. "We have a lot of confidence in him. I think anytime a guy hasn't played in a while or he is a freshman, there's sometimes some rust to shake off. But I think that's the beauty of scrimmages. You hope that some of that rust gets shaken off in those preseason scrimmages."