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Tom Gravante's simple solution for offensive struggles for Mount St. Mary's men's lacrosse: 'Shoot better'

Mount St. Mary's men's lacrosse coach Tom Gravante.
Mount St. Mary's men's lacrosse coach Tom Gravante. (Credit Mount St. Mary's Athletics / Baltimore Sun)

Since opening the season with 14 goals in a three-goal victory at Delaware on Feb. 12, Mount St. Mary's offensive production has dipped precipitously.

In fact, the Mountaineers haven't matched 14 goals in two games, managing just five in a four-goal loss setback at No. 11 Towson on Feb. 20 and six in a three-goal loss at Richmond six days ago. The team is shooting just 27.5 percent (25-of-91), which ranks 42nd among 67 Division I programs.

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The solution is not rocket science, according to coach Tom Gravante.

"We need to shoot better," he said Monday morning, noting that Mount St. Mary's outshot the Spiders, 26-17. "We certainly had our share of shots. … We need to shoot better. So we made some adjustments in practice and have asked a lot of our young men outside of practice. They're on spring break. So there's plenty of time in the day to put forth some extra effort and become an extraordinary team versus an ordinary team."

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Gravante said the offense also needs contributions from more than one player at the same time. In the win against the Blue Hens, senior midfielder Evan Gormley, junior midfielder Ryan Lamon, and redshirt junior attackman Bubba Johnson recorded three points each.

Against Towson, fifth-year senior attackman Mark Hojnoski was the only player to compile more than two points. Against Richmond, only Johnson finished with more than one point.

Senior midfielder Justin Gosnell, who led last year's team in goals (21) and points (27), has been shut out in the two losses, and Gormley has registered just one assist.

"The best players have to produce, and when they don't, that's going to create good things for the opponent and not-so-good things for our team," Gravante said. "That's how it works. These young men have to handle pressure, know that they're going into a good matchup, and they have to post numbers. Do positive things. Score some goals, have assists, pick up ground balls, limit turnovers."

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The Mountaineers (1-2) will try to revive their offense when they visit Georgetown (0-2) on Tuesday at 3 p.m. at Cooper Field in Washington, D.C. The Hoyas have surrendered 12 goals to No. 1 Notre Dame and 10 to Towson.

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