Injuries are a part of every sport, and a spate of them has affected Goucher coach Brian Kelly's ability to evaluate his team.
"We have a fair number of injuries, some lingering injuries from the fall, a couple guys that are slow in coming back," he said. "We feel like they're going to have an impact on our team eventually. So we really haven't had them in the mix. So, we're not really sure what our full potential could be at this point.
"But the guys that are on the field, we've got 19 freshmen and a transfer. We've got a roster of 42 guys. So half of our roster is young. We've also got a large contingent of returning guys. So we're getting the new guys up to speed as quickly as we possibly can. It's been more of a teaching preseason than trying to figure out who we are and who we're going to be."
The players who are injured might play important roles. Senior Gavin Wilson, who is recovering from offseason surgery on his wrist; senior David Waligurski, who has been bothered by knee ailments for the past two years; and junior Michael Morgan, who is battling a foot injury, were slated to compete for roles on the starting midfield. Sophomore attackman Nate Wilinski has been slowed by a knee ailment.
But if there is a silver lining, it's that the absences are giving other players a chance to show what they can do.
"So it's giving other guys an opportunity, and we're getting an opportunity to evaluate some of these freshmen, which is good," Kelly said. "It's been difficult, but it's been good. It has actually changed the dynamics of what we did in past years because we are spending the time to really try and educate the new players on how we want to do things and what we expect Goucher lacrosse to be."