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Alphabetical 2014 NCAA D1 Preview: Drexel

We’re back with the Alphabetical 2014 NCAA D1 Previews! Like last year, we’ll go through all of the D1 men’s teams for 2014 (there are 67 this year!) and we are now moving on to the Drexel Dragons, located in Philadelphia, PA.

After an 8-8 season in 2012 Drexel pumped things up in 2013 going 11-4. They missed out on the NCAAs when they lost to Towson 11-8 in the Colonial Conference tournament after beating the Tigers 14-11 only 10 days before. Drexel went 3-2 against Top 20 teams and had big wins over Villanova and Albany. Six of Drexel’s games were one goal games, and ten games were decided by 3 goals or less.

2014 sees Drexel take on a similarly challenging schedule with a decent SOS. Their big OOC games are against Virginia, Albany, Villanova, Robert Morris, St, John’s, Bryant, St. Joseph’s, and High Point.

Although Robert Church is now gone, Drexel still returns a lot of their offensive core in 2014. Ben MacIntosh, Ryan Belka, Frank Fusco, and Nick Trizanno all return. Chris Frederick and Nick Saputo also return to bolster the offense. Saputo brings a strong 2013 season as a face off mid as well, and his 54% win percentage (along with ten points) should continue to help the team gain quality possessions.

The attack unit has some depth and Canadian potential, and the midfield should be solid for Drexel once again. So how will the D fare? Cal Winkelman and Will Gabrielsen are BOTH back for their sophomore years in net. After a solid freshman campaign by the two keepers, they should provide a great base for that end of the field. Tyler Houchins and Matt Dusek return on defense for another year, and both played in all 15 games last season for Drexel, only missing one start between them. Pat Root also saw good time last year, and could fill in for the departed Chris Walsh this season. I’m curious to see who ends up taking the majority of the runs at LSM as Drexel only has one listed on their roster. Miles Thomas played in six games last year, so if he doesn’t make the jump to starter, one of the poles will have to be pulled up to LSM.

Overall Drexel has two solid options in net, a face off guy who is only getting better, a pretty experienced defense, and a solid offense that could potentially explode for goals in certain games. Drexel should be competitive again in 2014, and if they keep winning one goal games, they could easily make the NCAAs.

For more NCAA D1 Lacrosse coverage, check out Alphabetical 2013 NCAA D1 Preview: Air ForceAlbanyArmyBellarmineBinghamtonBostonBrownBryantBucknellCanisiusColgate,  CornellDartmouthDelaware, and Detroit.