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2019 Men’s College Lacrosse Year In Review: #40 Jacksonville Dolphins

The “Lacrosse Capital of the South” continue to builds in Jacksonville.

Jamah Adjamah

With the 2019 college lacrosse season complete, it’s time to look back at how all 73 teams did during the season, along with an early look at each squad for 2020.

Note: These are not end of season rankings.

Here’s our last five Year In Review posts we’ve done:

To see all of our posts, check out the 2019 Year In Review section on the site.

Let’s continue our 2019 Year In Review!

#40 Jacksonville Dolphins

Conference: SoCon
2019 Record: 6-9 (5-2 in SoCon)
Postseason: Lost to High Point in SoCon Semifinals
Head coach: John Galloway (3rd Season)

Statistical Leaders

Goals: Evan Tyler (37)
Assists: Jack Dolan (25)
Points: Jack Dolan (55)
Faceoffs: Hunter Turner (93-of-242; 38.4%)
Ground balls: Dixon Smith (46)
Caused turnovers: Jordan Young (27)
Goals against average: Hunter Sells (12.88 GAA)
Save percentage: Hunter Sells (42.9%)

Personnel Losses

Key seniors departing: M Eric Applegate (20 Gs, 23 As, 15 GBs, 5 CTs)
Senior scoring departing: 44 of 267 points (16.5%)
Senior starts lost: 14 of 150 (9.3%)

Season Summary

Jacksonville was one goal short of their first ever SoCon title in 2018 when they lost in overtime to Richmond. Although they returned to the SoCon Tournament, their title shot was stopped very early with a blowout loss against High Point.

Similar to last season, the Dolphins finished below .500 in nonconference games with a 1-6 record (Jacksonville was 2-4 in 2018). Jacksonville had two one-goal losses against Detroit Mercy and Michigan and two two-goal defeats to Marquette and then-No. 1 Towson. The not-so-close losses came against Duke and Penn State, two Championship Weekend teams, which isn’t bad at all.

Then came SoCon play, beginning with a win over Bellarmine. But the next three games were against the top three teams in the conference, beginning with 10th ranked High Point, a team that had aspirations of reaching the NCAA Tournament. Down one at the half, the Dolphins went on a 5-0 run in the half to take the lead and a two-goal upset win over the Panthers, essentially knocking them out of any at-large considerations.

Despite losses to Air Force and Richmond, Jacksonville won their final three games of the regular season over VMI, Furman, and Mercer to qualify for the SoCon Tournament. But in their rematch with High Point, Jacksonville was held scoreless until the 2:24 mark of the third quarter when the Panthers were up by 12.

Sophomore Jack Dolan set a single-season points record with 55 on the season, while redshirt-junior Evan Tyler’s 37 goals were also the most scores in a season in Jacksonville history. The two midfielders were also joined by Jeremy Winston, who finished with 12 goals on the year. Jack Pucci and Alec Drosos were also key pieces up top. Down at attack, Eric Applegate, Bo BowHunter, Dwayne Mattushik, and Brendan McKenna all registered at least 20 points on the year.

Jacksonville had a young, but talented, close defense led by sophomore Dixon Smith, who was usually covering the opposing team’s top attackman. SoCon All-Freshman and First Team selection Jordan Young led the Dolphins with 27 caused turnovers, while classmate Jack Heed finished with 11 caused turnovers. Tommy Barnhorst, Troy Hettinger, and Andrew Mitchell were other solid options with long poles, with Hayden La Vangie and Zack Deaken being the team’s two main short stick defensive midfielders with Griffin Corbett also involved.

Hunter Sells was in goal for another season, but saw his save percentage dip and goals against average rise. Freshman Hunter Turner took the majority of the faceoff draws for the Dolphins, but junior Alex Giovinco was the team’s top FOGO in terms of winning percentage with a 55.5% success rate on 128 faceoffs.

Looking Ahead

The large majority of Jacksonville’s 2019 squad will return for 2020. The only big senior departure is Applegate, the team’s all-time leader in points. But look for a solid trio between BowHunter, Mattushik, and McKenna down low. Barnhorst is not listed on Jacksonville’s roster, but the rest of the poles and short sticks will return for the Dolphins, as will Sells in goal and both Turner and Giovinco at the faceoff X.

Richmond has dominated the SoCon ever since they started as a Division I program and were a member of the Atlantic Sun. It’s a tough crowd down south with High Point, Jacksonville, and Richmond altogether. And don’t forget the westernmost team, Air Force, in that conversation.


How many wins will Jacksonville get in 2020?

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  • 10%
    (7 votes)
  • 31%
    (22 votes)
  • 36%
    (25 votes)
  • 21%
    (15 votes)
69 votes total Vote Now