We’re breaking down each and every NCAA D1 team one by one to get prepped for the rapidly approaching season. Welcome back to the Alphabetical 2013 NCAA D1 Previews! We move another spot down the list and the Manhattan Jaspers, located in the Bronx, NY, are up for Preview!
Manhattan went 5-9 last year, which isn’t disastrous in and of itself by any means. However, the Jaspers did experience some truly tough losses, and were even blanked twice, in losses to Lehigh (13-0) and Johns Hopkins (11-0). The Jaspers got wins over Mercer, Binghamton, Providence, Detroit, and Wagner. Their 20-5 win over Wagner and 8-6 win over Detroit were probably their best efforts.
This is the most recent video on men’s lacrosse from Manhattan. It’s from 2010.
2013 sees a slightly changed schedule. In addition to their MAAC games, Manhattan will still play Princeton, Binghamton, Mercer, Wagner, and Providence. They have also added Army, Lafayette, Mount St. Mary’s, and Rutgers. No Hopkins, but things still didn’t get much easier.
For the most part, Manhattan kept their opponents from scoring a ton of goals. Even when they got shut out, the other guys weren’t putting up 15 goals. So let’s start with their D, and go from there. All three goalies who saw time last year are back. Rich Akapnitis logged the most minutes last year, returns as a Junior, and is a big presence in the cage. Michael Wiatrak seems to have potential as well. Not a bad start!
Jeff Mohr returns on defense after starting every game last year, and he is joined by Sean McMahon, who saw a lot of time in 2012. The Jaspers will need to replace a couple of other starters though, and they have a mix of some large and small younger players in the wings. It will be interesting to see who emerges from this large group.
Offensively, Manhattan returns Ryan Payton and Brian McGrath at attack, which should give them some experience and a scoring punch, but they graduated a good chunk of scoring talent as well, and will need a number of younger guys to step in and contribute immediately. With Brian Lenksold gone, the Jaspers also need to find someone who can consistently win face offs.
Unfortunately for the Jaspers, it looks like Manhattan might have another year like 2012 in 2013. Their offense has some talent, but lacks depth. Their defense is good, and they have solid goaltending, but it’s not good enough to hold opponents to under 6 goals a game. On top of that, face offs could become an issue for this team quickly.
Manhattan has some really solid young talent, and good experience and skill, in places. If the younger guys can immediately step in, my assessment could be way off, but D1 lacrosse is super competitive, and that’s a big ask for any program.
Click HERE to see Alphabetical 2013 NCAA D1 Preview posts for Air Force, Albany, Army, Bellarmine, Binghamton, Brown, Bryant, Bucknell, Canisius, Colgate, Cornell, Dartmouth, Denver, Detroit, Drexel, Duke, Fairfield, Hartford, Harvard, High Point, Hobart, Hofstra, Holy Cross, Jacksonville, Johns Hopkins, Lafayette, Lehigh, and Loyola!