Editor’s note: The following was written by new contributor, The Lax. TL is here to talk MCLA D2 and whatever else is on his mind. Check out his first post here.
Here it is. Post #2. Let’s see if I can get over a sophomore slump.
Several things to cover. I got my swagger back, and so did the Charlotte 49ers Men’s basketball team, apparently. Destroyed #18/#20 Louisville in Freedom Hall. I bring this up for two reasons: 1. I’m a huge Charlotte fan. Basketball, Lacrosse, Soccer, Interpretive Dancing, anything. 2. I had a chance to have a little Q&A via facebook with the Head Coach of the men’s lax team, Josh DuVall. The following are excerpts….
Some background on Josh (taken straight from the team website): DuVall played collegiately at St. Andrews Presbyterian College before transferring to UNC Charlotte where he was a two time captain. In 2004 he was first team All-SELC and an honorable mention All-American. DuVall has coached Three MCLA All-Americans, 24 All-SELC honorees and the 2007 Pieper Award winner (SELC Defensive Player of the Year) in his four seasons at UNC Charlotte.
And he’s got a 27-18 record as a head coach, with a record of 26-12 since the 2007 season
Josh provided me with a list of who he’d start if he had a conference game tomorrow. I noticed it was a very young team and asked him about it
The Lax: So, it’s a fairly young team, from what I can tell. Only 2 senior starters. Either youve started recruiting or the recent success has helped you dearly.
DuVall: They may not all be starting but we have a pretty solid core of seniors who will play a large role in how successful we end up this season. Our top two face off middies on the depth chart are both seniors, Will McGreevy and Abe Al-Babba, who’ve sort of existed in the shadow of (now graduated) Mike Silvestri for the last couple years. In fact I would expect 4 of the 6 middies on our top two lines to be seniors. Joe Delcasino is someone I’m having trouble placing in terms of where he’s gonna end up getting his playing time, but he’s been a captain for us in the past and I expect that his leadership will be crucial to our 2010 season as well. He’ll see time at close defense, LSM and we’ve even experimented with putting a short pole in his hand.
Our problem back in my first season coaching was trying to find enough quality guys to put a respectable starting 10 on the field. Now the problem is trying to find enough playing time to put all my quality guys on the field. I’ll take the current problem any season of course.
Most importantly, I think the veteran guys are excited about all the young talent we’ve picked up the last 2 seasons. Right now the balance between young and old players is about as perfect as I could plan for it to be.
I also asked about recruiting, since there seems to be a huge influx of talent heading to the Queen City.
DuVall: And no… I have done no recruiting other than being very good about answering emails and talking to parents who contact me. Honestly, the only recruiting done by Charlotte is by the players when they go home and visit their high schools. They talk it up, the kids see them in their Charlotte gear on facebook or whatever and they see that the MCLA and the SELC and Charlotte are legitimate competitive options for collegiate lacrosse.
I wish I had time and resources to recruit. I still do this without any compensation and with me starting law school, I have very little time to devote to the team outside of practice and games. I’m lucky to have John Metcalfe and GT Hobday out to help me with the requirements of coaching the team.
The Lax: What are your keys to the season? to winning the SELC north? SELC title? MCLA title?
DuVall: As of now we only have John Carroll on the schedule so we have to win the SELC tourney to make the national championship. Just couldn’t get it worked out with the other teams we discussed games with, we’d love to have them, but we can’t afford to travel overnight more than once a season and most teams, like us, want to host, not travel.
We’ve got to play our game during the regular season like we have for three straight years, just get ourselves to Atlanta. Along the way we need to get the freshmen scorers to improve enough so that we can count on them in Atlanta. Our downfall in each of the past 3 trips there boils down to depth. We had at best maybe 2 lines of middies and we could hide that for 1 game… but it left us with nothing in the second game. This year we aren’t gonna let that happen. We’re gonna have 9+ middies so we don’t burn our guys out trying to win our first game down there. Honestly, in the semi-final last year against Emory I had 5 middies left that were healthy… We’ll never win with that.
The Lax: And now that you’ve started playing some out of conference games, is there any dream match-up you wanna see in your tenure at Charlotte?
DuVall: Dream matchup? Not really. We’ve never won the SELC so I try to concentrate on winning our tourney more than I think about national opponents. We played St. Thomas to OT* in a neutral site two years ago and lost after we had 3 clear chances to win that our guys tossed away… I guess a rematch with them would be my ideal OOC game to schedule.
The Lax note: *From what I heard, one of the best games in D2 during 2008
One final topic of discussion that was reached before press time: Fall Ball.
The Lax: How did the USC game go?
DuVall: The game against South Carolina unfortunately had to be cancelled due to rain, just like 2 other fall ball games we had lined up. In the end we played just 2 of our 5 planned fall ball games. In both games, against Appalachian and the South Charlotte Old Guys mens team we led at the half before losing in the 4th quarter. Though it was only two games I feel like we got to see just enough of what we can do to keep me very optimistic about the spring.
Twas nice gettin’ some discussion going with my former coach. I wish the 49ers the best of luck this season. Except on February 20th when my fellow Spartans of UNCG and I will be making the trip down to Charlotte. That game’s been circled on my calender for months.
- You can check the 49ers out all season long at http://freeteams.net/charlottelacrosse/ They have a sick header.
- App State beat Charlotte 8-7. UNCG beat App State 17-11. The Super Awesome Transitive Property of Sports states that UNCG beat Charlotte by 7 goals. Then again, need I remind you of one very important factor……Fall. Ball.
- Tommies, I don’t know if you saw it or not, but the Niners want revenge. Make it happen.
- My music taste is all over the place as of late. Glee, Taylor Swift, Lil Jon, LMFAO, August Burns Red.
- I wonder how many of you are actually reading this post.
- Just got some Maverik gear in the mail. SICK.
- Laxpower.com has posted the schedules they have for the 2010 season. Analysis to come.
And now….Girls jumping on trampolines!
About the Author: The Lax picked up his first stick when he stepped on campus at MCLA D2 school UNC Charlotte. After taking a short break, he returned to the field for independent UNCG. The Lax enjoys flowers, pictures of unicorns, long walks on the beach, and above all else, beating people with his D-Pole.