Hanover Boys' Lacrosse Opens Monday Seeking Playoff Return
Facing a schedule studded with the top teams in Northern New England, Hanover is eager to rebound from an uncharacteristic losing season last year. The Marauders finished at 7-11, missing the playoffs by a game. It was the first time in Hanover history that the team ended up out of the playoff picture, although several teams over a decade ago qualified for the postseason with worse records in an era when all teams were eligible.
Hanover has a strong senior class, which will help them plug some holes on the defensive side of the ball. The Marauders graduated all three starting defensemen, as well as two-year starter Zander Lingelbach-Pierce. Senior Joe Warhold will get the nod in goal for Hanover, who will probably start seniors Pat Logan, and Gabe Loud and junior Mikey Staiger on defense. Senior John Warhold and sophomore Griffin Young will provide depth on the back line.
Leading scorer George Geraghty has graduated but the Marauders have several experienced players to fill the gap. Jake Acker, one of several three-sport standouts on the team, moves to attack from midfield. Acker had 22 goals last season, and will be joined by junior Graham Penfield (13 goals). Sophomore Kyle Rozzi will also move from midfield to attack to complete the trio. Freshman Hill Carter has impressed, and will add depth up top.
Midfielder Brian Seltzer is the team’s leading returning scorer, and hopes to improve on last year’s total of 34 goals, as does fellow senior Reed Winter (22 goals). Senior Griffin Johnson and juniors Collin Rozzi should see the most playing time at midfield, with senior Owen Brooks returning to handle faceoff duties. Midfield depth will be provided by Brian Pattison, Brian Seltzer, and long stick middie Alex Mosenthal.
Hanover’s first two weeks are harrowing, schedule-wise. After contending Monday with Vermont Champion CVU (with a JV game at 6:30 to follow the Varsity tilt), the Marauders will host Bishop Guertin on Thursday. The Cardinals aren’t just good, they are ridiculous. They have won seven of the last nine NHIAA Division One titles (losing to Hanover’s 19-2 team in 2009), and have been in the finals for 12 straight years (beating Hanover in 2012). They are loaded with D1 college recruits, and have an interesting habit of attracting the best players from other schools who happen to play club lacrosse for BG Head Coach Chris Cameron.
The Marauders play their first road game on April 17th, facing the team that knocked them out of the playoffs on Senior Day, and then return home on the 20th for a match against perennial power Pinkerton, a school with over 3.000 students enrolled.
Coach Gardner, an All-State and Academic All-American midfielder at Hanover, has many years of school and club coaching experience, and feels good about this year’s edition of the Marauders. “Our emphasis this year will be on taking care of the ball in transition and putting a premium on possessions. Whether we have success in avoiding turnovers and winning the ground ball battle will shape our season.”