Editor’s Note: Welcome to our NAIA lacrosse season-in-review series. Each day for the next month or so, we will be recapping last year’s NAIA lacrosse season in advance for the 2020 season. Today, we are looking Benedictine out of the KCAC
2019 Benedictine Review
The Ravens shocked the NAIA in 2019 and truly put themselves on the map. They went 10-5 on the year, won the KCAC Tournament, and earned a bid to the NAIA Invitational. The program took a big step forward in 2019, but have they truly turned the corner?
Benedictine lost three key seniors who were instrumental in their historic 2019 season. The Ravens lost midfielders Ryan Heinser (24 goals, 6 assists) and Kyle Tomc (19 goals, 4 assists), along with LSM Ethan Novacek (30 ground balls, 16 caused turnovers) to graduation. Losing leadership and midfield depth hurts the team heading into 2020 but shouldn’t be insurmountable.
2020 Benedictine Outlook
The Ravens return the bulk of their KCAC championship team in 2020. They will look for sophomore Brady Guck (36 goals, 16 assists) and senior Peter Girard (25 goals, 19 assists) to build off of their strong 2019 season and lead the Raven’s offense in 2020. Girard will have to clean up his turnovers — he had 42 in 2019 — if the team hopes to repeat as KCAC champions. The team also returns a pair of strong goalies in sophomore Duncan Loud (80 saves, 51% save percentage) and JR Dustin Reis (77 saves, 47% save percentage). Having that kind of depth at goalie is a nice luxury, but is splitting goalie reps 50/50 in the NAIA a recipe for success?
Way Too Early Prediction
Benedictine has depth and talent all over the field, now they just need to put it all together. I predict that the Ravens stay competitive in the KCAC, earn an at-large bid, but will again struggle to compete against the NAIA’s elite teams come championship weekend.
Team Info: Raven Athletics
Twitter Info: @RavenMLAX