Loyola has been a powerhouse since it joined the Patriot League, and while the conference has become one of the most competitive in the nation, the Greyhounds are still going to stay a top team. Last season was the year they were supposed to take a step back with the loss of so much talent, and yet the Greyhounds remained the top team in the league.
Pat Spencer, entering his sophomore season, very well could be a Tewaaraton winner, and at the very least will be a candidate.
Loyola faced Villanova on Sunday from Bethesda, Maryland, to wrap up their fall pre-season, a 16-9 victory.
Inside Lacrosse ranked Loyola’s incoming freshman class the 14th best heading into the season.
Wiley Bonham might be the most significant addition as a lefty who will be competing for a role on the starting offense, especially with some key departures.
Peter Swindell might have trouble cracking a strong offensive midfield.
Ryan McNulty is the biggest addition on the defense who will be leaned on right away. He will help fill the void of graduated defender David Manning. McNulty is arguably the top incoming freshman defender, and he will impact an already strong defensive unit.
Logan Devereaux looked solid in one of Loyola’s post season contests and might be a surprise impact player. He’s 6’4 and can use his size, and the Georgia native could catch a few teams off guard.
Zach Herreweyers and Tyler Albrecht were two of the most important players for Loyola the past four seasons, and now they’re gone, both drafted as well into the National Lacrosse League.
Luckily, while the losses are big, they are the only real major losses for the Greyhounds. Also graduated are Jeff Chase, Mike Kutzer, and Manning, but the rest of the list isn’t long, meaning this is a year for young players to develop and not feel a ton of pressure to fill holes.
Still, there’s 65 points that need to be made up.
The blow of losing Herreweyers and Albrecht will be softened by Spencer, coming off of an 88 point season, but Zack Sisco should also be the one to step up to replace Herreweyers’ spot on the team.
The battle between the pipes is going to be interesting to watch with Jacob Stover and Grant Limone both having the talent to make a strong case. Stover stepped up late in his freshman season and made 112 saves on the season, but Limone had the trust of the Greyhounds in the postseason.
A (Too Early) Projection
Though the Greyhounds lost two huge contributors, Spencer is returned along with both Romar Dennis and Brian Sherlock to make one of the best offensive midfields in the conference.
Jordan Germershausen in his senior year would be projected to step up as a starting attackman, while John Duffy and Sammy Edwards could see their roles increased in their second seasons.
The Greyhounds are going to be there until the end and are almost a lock to make the Patriot League tournament. The rest of the talent in the league is only getting better, so getting out of the tournament is no bunny, but they would have to be the favorites, as of the fall.