St. Mary’s was supposed to begin the season Sunday at Roanoke. But the winter storm that dumped more than a foot of snow in and around Baltimore was even more paralyzing at Roanoke, forcing both teams to push back the season opener to Tuesday.
So instead of kicking things off Sunday, the Seahawks – ranked 18th in the most recent United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association poll – have been hitting the practice field in preparation for the No. 8 Maroons.
“We had prepared and were hoping to get the game in,” coach Chris Hasbrouck said Monday afternoon. “It’s just one of those things where you’ve just got to regroup. It gave us two extra days. That’s how we looked at it. We tuned some things up. Anytime you open up, you’re never quite sure if your combinations are right. That first game is always a little bit hectic even with the preseason. So we feel good. We had two extra days to practice and really work on some things. We’re hoping to be sharp, and I know we’ll be ready to go. The thing is just keeping our emotions in check for the first 10 minutes when we’re finally on the field.”
But there is a downside to the delay. The postponement means that St. Mary’s will have two fewer days to study No. 7 Dickinson for their Saturday contest at St. Paul’s.
“That is true, and the schedule out of the gates is tough,” Hasbrouck said. “It’s extremely competitive. But we’ll get back and we’ll be able to watch some film and win or lose, you can look at it both ways, but it will be great to get right back on the field instead of having that full week. If we’re coming off a big win against a great opponent, we’ll have that momentum working for us. If it doesn’t go our way tomorrow, we’ll be able to say, ‘Hey, we’re back on the field, and we’ll have another opportunity against another great opponent.’ So we’re excited.”
The Seahawks used the extra time wisely, finding three starting defensemen in senior David Mitchell McShane (St. Paul’s), sophomore Phil Cappello and junior Grant Lowenfeld will start at D. Freshman Mike Freiji (Loyola) will also get some time.
Hasbrouck also announced that senior goalkeeper Zack Blewett will get the start in the net.
“He’s been playing great,” Hasbrouck said of Blewett. “He has good command of the defense. Other than a couple guys, we’ve got a veteran group back there. Three of our top four guys are back. [Junior] Collin Brown and [senior] Miles Loring-Thomas are at LSM and those guys were our Nos. 2 and 3 guys at pole last year. So we’ve really got a veteran group that’s had a lot of experience and right now, Zack’s just really been playing consistently, and he’s got a really good understanding of what we’re going to do. So we feel really good with him going in.”