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Megan Halczuk flourishing on draws for UMBC women | COLLEGE LACROSSE NOTES

UMBC's Megan Halczuk passes in a game against Hartford.
UMBC's Megan Halczuk passes in a game against Hartford. (Ian Feldmann)

When the coronavirus pandemic prematurely ended the 2020 season for the UMBC women’s lacrosse program, coach Amy Slade gathered with her assistants and concluded that the team needed to place an emphasis on winning more draw controls.

Enter sophomore midfielder Megan Halczuk, who won nine draw controls in Saturday’s 18-7 loss at No. 6 Stony Brook to raise her season total to 93 in 11 games, passing the school’s previous single-season record of 87 set by Caitlin Miller in 2018 in 17 games.

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Halczuk established school marks in draw controls (706) and goals (270) at Kennard-Dale High School in Fawn Grove, Pennsylvania, but said she did not anticipate eclipsing the Retrievers record in her second year at the Division I level.

“I definitely surprised myself,” said Halczuk, who credited assistant coach Alex Benedict and volunteer assistant coach Grayson Corbett with aiding her growth. “I didn’t think I would get it as early as I did, but I’m really happy that I was able to accomplish it.”

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The attention her coaches had placed on draw controls might have intimidated Halczuk, but she said she welcomed the pressure.

“Growing up, draws were always my thing,” she said. “Taking the draw is probably one of my favorite parts of the game because of how special it is and how important it is and how technical it is. It’s my part to play on the team. I have to take the draw and get the possession because that’s what important to me and the coaches on the team.”

Slade, who coached Miller in 2018, said Halczuk is unlike any player she has coached or seen.

“She can analyze situations, and it doesn’t take her full games to make changes,” Slade said. “It only takes her one or two draws. And that’s what the draw is really all about, the ability to make changes of regardless who you’re drawing against and whatever mechanism they’re using. Megan’s able to catch on relatively quickly and make the in-game adjustments without having to be coached too much. That’s a skill she’s really developed herself throughout the course of the year and a half that she’s been here.”

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At her current average of 8.5 draw controls, Halczuk would have been on pace for at least 144 draw controls in 17 games. She now has an objective for next season.

“I’m hoping that I can beat my own record and just improve from that,” she said. “I want to go up from there.”

Unmoved by mark

With two goals in the No. 2 seed Loyola Maryland men’s 16-9 win against No. 3 seed Navy in a Patriot League tournament quarterfinal Tuesday night, senior attackman Kevin Lindley raised his career total to 153, breaking a tie with Gary Hanley for the most goals in school history (151 from 1978-81).

When Lindley matched Hanley’s mark with three goals in the No. 16 Greyhounds’ 11-9 upset of then-No. 6 Georgetown on April 29, he maintained an air of indifference about the achievement.

“I don’t really care,” he said. “I just want to win. It comes with the territory. All of my goals are 90 percent assisted. So it just means I have really good teammates.”

Higher standards

After a freshman year in which he tied for the UMBC men’s lead in goals with 18 and added three assists in 14 starts, Ryan Frawley met with coach Ryan Moran after the 2017 season for a typical exit interview. Frawley said Moran told him that he could develop into a 100-point producer.

Frawley reached 100 points in a 19-13 victory over High Point on March 7, 2020 — the last game the Retrievers played last spring before the coronavirus pandemic canceled the rest of the season — and scored his 100th goal with his first of three tallies in No. 17 UMBC’s 14-6 rout of NJIT on Saturday.

“I’ll never forget that he said that he thought I could be a 100-point scorer for the team,” said the fifth-year senior attackman, who will graduate later this month with a bachelor’s in biological sciences with a minor in information systems. “That meant a lot for him to have confidence in me like that, and I made it my personal goal to go above that and get to the 100-goal mark. That’s always been something in the back of my mind. It’s not something that I go out onto the field and try to do every day, but it’s just kind of a personal goal to keep me going or whenever I’m lacking in motivation, which isn’t every often. So I think it is pretty special.”

Notes

>> Cole Williams, a graduate student attackman for the Johns Hopkins men, broke a record he shared with six former players when he played in his 65th career game in Saturday’s 15-7 victory over Penn State in a Big Ten tournament quarterfinal. The Marriottsville resident and Loyola Blakefield graduate also became the 20th player in program history to score 100 goals and the 15th player to amass at least 100 goals and 50 assists.

>> Aurora Cordingley, a senior attacker for the No. 13 Johns Hopkins women, owns the fifth-longest points streak in the program’s Division I history at 43 games. She also ranks ninth in the school’s all-time history in points with 177 and 10th in goals with 114.

>> Brighton Lorber, a junior goalkeeper for the McDaniel men, made 26 saves in Saturday’s 17-7 loss to No. 15 Ursinus. The Lutherville resident and Loyola Blakefield graduate’s stops were the third-most in program history, trailing Chuck Nolan’s 34 against Hampden-Sydney on March 16, 1983 and Jakob Katzen’s 30 against Franklin & Marshall on April 10, 2019.

>> Kealey Allison, a junior midfielder for the McDaniel women, tied the program record of 12 points in a single game set by Sandi Stevens against Gettysburg on April 19, 1989 when she amassed eight goals and four assists in Saturday’s 19-15 victory over Ursinus. Allison’s eight goals are tied for the second-most in a game, trailing only Denise Sarver’s nine against Washington College on April 5, 1995.

>> Emma Miller, a freshman midfielder for the McDaniel women, controlled 13 draws in Saturday’s 19-15 victory over Ursinus, tying for the second-most in a game. The Ellicott City resident and Marriotts Ridge graduate’s total trails only Allison’s 16 draw controls against Susquehanna on March 7, 2020.

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