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2018 Men’s Lacrosse Year in Review: #12 Georgetown Hoyas

Georgetown made a surprise run to win the Big East late in the season.

Rafael Suanes/Georgetown Athletics

With the 2018 college lacrosse season complete and fall ball just around the corner, it’s time to start looking back at how all 71 teams did during the season, as well as what to expect from each squad for 2019. These are not end of season rankings, as some people might think.

We’re almost done looking back to 2018 with plenty of team recaps thus far and continued our series this week with Villanova, Richmond, Robert Morris, and UMass.

So with that, let’s continue the recaps!

#12 Georgetown Hoyas

Conference: Big East
2018 Record: 12-5 (3-2 in Big East play)
Postseason: Defeated Villanova and Denver to win Big East championship, lost to Johns Hopkins in NCAA First Round
Head coach: Kevin Warne (6th Year)

Statistical Leaders

Goals: Jake Carraway (44)
Assists: Craig Berge (24)
Points: Jake Carraway (64)
Faceoffs: Peter Tagliaferri (157-of-290; 54.1%)
Ground balls: Peter Tagliaferri (70)
Caused turnovers: Greg Galligan (22)
Goals against average: Nick Marrocco (7.95 GAA)
Save percentage: Nick Marrocco (54.5%)

Personnel Losses

Key seniors departing: G Nick Marrocco (7.95 GAA, 54.5% SV %, 33 GBs), M Craig Berge (23 Gs, 24 As, 22 GBs), SSDM Ryan Hursey (13 GBs, 6 CTs, 1 G, 1 A), D Connor Moran (16 GBs, 10 CTs), A/M Matt Behrens (18 Gs, 7 As, 20 GBs), FOGO Peter Tagliaferri (54.1% faceoff draws, 70 GBs, 1 G, 4 As), SSDM Greg Galligan (21 GBs, 22 CTs, 3 Gs, 1 A), LSM Kieran Jenkins (29 GBs, 15 CTs, 1 A), A Zeke Morrill (3 Gs, 2 As), SSDM Alex Robinson (5 GBs, 5 CTs), FOGO Riley Mann (31.9% faceoff draws, 13 GBs)
Senior scoring departing: 89 of 304 points (29.3%)
Senior starts lost: 58 of 170 (34.1%)

Season Summary

It was a wild season for the Hoyas that involved peaks and valleys throughout the season. But in the end, Georgetown took home their first ever Big East crown and appeared in the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2007.

Originally not on anybody’s radar to start the season, the Hoyas started off 2018 with six straight wins, beating High Point, Robert Morris, Towson, Mount St. Mary’s, Marist, and Hobart. A few good teams in that span, especially the NEC champs and the defending CAA winners. Suddenly, the Hoyas were looking like a team to keep an eye on.

But just before Big East play, the losing started. In a span of about a month, Georgetown lost four of their five games, beginning with a very surprising defeat against Drexel. That followed with an overtime road loss to Marquette to start Big East play and a low-scoring home loss to Denver by a goal. Despite leading by two goals entering the fourth quarter, the Pioneers came back with three tallies in the final frame to take the win. They stopped the bleeding with a win over Providence but could not get by Loyola in a midweek showdown thanks to a 4-1 second quarter by the Greyhounds.

The third and final part of their season began in a bittersweet way. Despite upsetting Villanova on the road, the Hoyas found out they would lose talented junior Daniel Bucaro for the remainder of the season. That sounded like a big blow for the team, but it turned out it wasn’t that bad. With a couple switches at attack, Georgetown took care of NJIT and St. John’s to enter the Big East Tournament as the number two seed.

In the semifinal against Villanova, the Hoyas started the second half strong before letting the Wildcats back in it in the final quarter. But goals from Robert Clark and Craig Berge gave them the breathing room to advance to face Denver in the Big East championship. Just like in the regular season meeting, the teams combined for 11 goals. But the Hoyas scored eight of them, including three from Jake Carraway and Lucas Wittenberg, en route to a Big East title. In their First Round game against Johns Hopkins, it appeared the Hoyas were on their way to an upset with an 8-4 fourth quarter lead. But Kyle Marr single-handedly tied things up for Hopkins with five goals in the final frame, which led to a Shack Stanwick overtime goal.

Bucaro, Carraway, and junior Austin McDonald started all 12 games together at attack before Bucaro’s season got cut short. Head coach Kevin Warne then made a couple of changes and replaced Bucaro and McDonald with Clark and senior Matt Behrens, which turned out to be a smart move. Fellow senior Zeke Morrill also saw time at attack, primarily as a man-up specialist. Up top, the starting midfield mainly consisted of Berge, Wittenberg, and sophomore Massimo Bucci. Behrens also saw some time at midfield before being moved to start at attack. There were a large group of other midfielders that saw action in a few games as well, including Derek Altobello and Sean O’Keefe.

Freshman Gibson Smith, senior Connor Moran, and sophomore Stephen MacLeod started all 17 games for the Hoyas. Smith and Moran recorded at least 10 caused turnovers on the year. Juniors Drew Abate and Tucker Gillman were used on the man-down units. Senior Kieran Jenkins was the top LSM on the team with 29 ground balls and 15 caused turnovers, with freshman Joe Licalzi as his backup. The short stick defensive midfielders were dominated by seniors Ryan Hursey and Greg Galligan, along with Alex Robinson. Peter Tagliaferri went 54.1% from the faceoff X and was backed up by fellow senior Riley Mann, while Nick Marrocco ended his Hoya career with a 7.95 goals against average and a 54.5% save percentage.

Looking Ahead

It doesn’t look like Georgetown loses a lot with how many starters departing as well as their point totals. But the defense takes a huge hit, especially with their entire top “rope unit.” Add to that their starting goalie, both FOGOs, and a starting defenseman and there’s a ton of work for the Hoyas if they want to repeat at Big East champs. One option for a new starting defenseman could be Drew Abate or Gillman, but it could also be Finn Dunne who didn’t play at all last season. Sophomore Jack Stephenson and freshman Owen McElroy played in four games last season in goal, while freshman Cade Heverly went 9-of-21 from the faceoff X last season.

On offense, the only big losses involve Berge and Behrens. Bucaro comes back from injury and there’s a ton of midfielders that appeared in a few games that the Hoyas hope take the next step in their developments. There’s no question Georgetown has the talent it needs on offense. But the difference between another successful year and one where the Hoyas fall below .500 could potentially be on the defensive side of the ball.

Here’s who the Hoyas will be adding to their roster for next year.*

Georgetown’s Unofficial Class of 2018

Player Position High School
Player Position High School
Mason Bonnie Attack Lawrenceville (NJ)
Chris Brandau Goalie Boys' Latin (MD)
Zach Friedland Attack Torrey Pines (CA)
Zach Geddes Midfield Phillips Andover (MA)
Nate Gentile Defense/LSM Pomfret School (CT)
Alex Mazzone Defense/LSM Ward Melville (NY)
Declan McDermott Midfield Pleasantville (NY)
Brandon Meaux Attack Episcopal Dallas (TX)
James Reilly Midfield/FO Conestoga (PA)
Peter Thompson Attack Detroit Central Catholic (MI)
Dylan Watson Attack Hill Academy (ON)

*Compiled from a multitude of websites. Schools usually officially announce their recruiting class during the fall semester.

Poll

How many wins will Georgetown get in 2019?

This poll is closed

  • 6%
    0-7
    (3 votes)
  • 29%
    8-9
    (13 votes)
  • 22%
    10-11
    (10 votes)
  • 40%
    12+
    (18 votes)
44 votes total Vote Now