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MIAA Lacrosse Game of the Week – Calvert Hall vs Archbishop Spalding – 5/2/2023

MIAA Lacrosse is a thrilling and highly competitive event that brings together some of the finest talent in the sport. In this article, we present a summary of an insightful and thought-provoking conversation between two of the most renowned lacrosse experts in Maryland: Don Zimmerman and Bob Shriver. Shriver, who retired from coaching in 2015 after a storied 36-year career at Boys’ Latin, boasts an impressive record of 507 wins and only 140 defeats. Zimmerman, a National Lacrosse Hall of Fame inductee in 2017, served as the head coach for the UMBC Retrievers at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County for 24 years. With their combined expertise and experience, there are few minds better suited to offer valuable insights and analysis on everything MIAA Lacrosse.

MIAA Lacrosse Game of the Week (May 2, 2023)

Game: Calvert Hall vs Archbishop Spalding

Time: 4:00pm EST

Stream: HERE

Calvert Hall

Calvert Hall is currently in the midst of an intense battle for a coveted bye in the MIAA Lacrosse Playoffs. With only the top two seeds earning a bye, the Cardinals find themselves in the number three spot and are vying to climb higher. The quarterfinals of the playoffs commence on May 12th, making the upcoming matches against Archbishop Spalding, Severn, and Loyola Blakefield crucial for Calvert Hall’s playoff prospects.

Fortunately for the Cardinals, they have the advantage of senior Nicholas Steele, who recently returned from a knee injury and contributed two goals in his comeback game against Boys’ Latin. Legendary coach Bob Shriver believes that Steele will feature in the starting attack-line, bolstering Calvert Hall’s offensive arsenal alongside their top two scorers.

Moreover, the Cardinals’ midfield unit possesses exceptional depth and athleticism. Senior Noah Brannock epitomizes this, demonstrating remarkable stamina in transitioning seamlessly between defense and offense. In addition, the likes of Donovan Lewis and Josh Nagy, both of whom excel in other MIAA sports outside of lacrosse, bring invaluable versatility to the team’s offense, drawing slides and swinging the ball around with ease.

At the faceoff-x, Calvert Hall boasts the formidable Jackson Strickland, currently committed to the University of Richmond, whose 66% win percentage on the year speaks to his exceptional ability to compete in high-pressure games, as demonstrated in the Cardinals’ game against Boys’ Latin. Overall, Calvert Hall’s depth, athleticism, and tenacity make them a formidable contender as they vie for a spot among the MIAA Lacrosse elite.

Archbishop Spalding

Coach Brian Phipps faces a formidable challenge in moving on from last year’s loss of 15 highly skilled seniors, most of whom have moved on to play at the next level. The team’s youth has prompted Phipps to stress the importance of “learning,” with several sophomores and juniors being given significant playing time. Despite their inexperience, the team remains in contention for a playoff berth if they can emerge victorious in their next three MIAA lacrosse games. This would be a remarkable accomplishment for such a young squad, with their game against Calvert Hall being especially pivotal.

Offensively, the Cavaliers have struggled this season, largely due to a lack of experience. Their inability to score more than six goals per game has resulted in several close losses. In their nine losses this season, Spalding is putting up an average of 6.2 goals per game. In contrast, their victories have come when the team has scored an average of 12 goals per game. Defensively, the Cavaliers have been consistent, allowing an average of 8.8 goals per game. With only four games left in the season, Spalding must find a way to ignite their offense.

Coach Phipps can take pride in the play of senior pole, Logan Meighan, who is widely regarded as one of the top close defensemen in MIAA Lacrosse. Meighan will be tasked with shutting down the formidable Calvert Hall attack-line. Sophomore LSM Robby Hopper is another key player who can impact the game on both ends of the field, and he has shown a willingness to initiate transition opportunities.

Faceoffs could prove to be a decisive factor in the outcome of the game, as Spalding has struggled in this area since losing their starting FOGO to injury earlier this season. Phipps will be experimenting with different players taking faceoffs in an effort to win this critical aspect of the game, with the aim of making it a true skirmish and securing possession of the groundball. To have a chance at victory, the Cavaliers must work hard to keep the faceoffs competitive.