Monday Notebook: NCAA Division III
Steve Colfer was inundated by texts, emails and phone calls on Thursday morning, and he enjoyed every one of them. All of them started with the word 'Congratulations,' as Cabrini notched its first win against Gettysburg the previous afternoon.
"I've been hearing a lot from the alums who have been on the other end of the stick from Gettysburg for a number of years," said Colfer. "They were happy as well to get that monkey off our back."
The Cavaliers dominated the mighty Bullets, 8-1, improving to 4-2 on the season as they near the start of their conference slate.
"It was a great win for the program, and to be able to compete against a program like Gettysburg with the pedigree and the tradition that they have is an honor," said Colfer, who is now 1-6 against the Bullets. "In a matter of week, we got to play against Coach Rostan and Coach Janczyk, who are two legends in our game from a coaching standpoint. I respect everything they've done. So to beat a school like Gettysburg and have that opportunity was awesome for our kids."
Colfer's squad are a relatively unknown bunch compared with some of the standouts they've had in the recent past. The coach doesn't mind that at all, and believes it makes this team more dangerous than previous editions.
"We've always had gritty kids," Colfer said. "We may not be the most talented team on the field, but we're always going to work hard. That's the kind of kid we get at Cabrini in general, and I think it trickles down to our athletic programs. We don't have a team of stars. We're probably a harder team to match up with because there isn't the pecking order offensively or defensively where you say, 'There's the kid we need to shut down.' We are a bunch of guys who are all doing well in their roles. We don't have a star system and I think that is serving us well this year. I hope to see it continue."
- No. 2 Tufts' 14-12 win over No. 4 Stevens was a statistical dead-heat other than the Ducks proficiency with the extra man (5-for-5), and the game felt nip-and-tuck even when the Jumbos jumped out to an early, 4-1 lead.
"It was about even at the half and seemed to be about even the rest of the way," said Daly, standing in the lobby of his hotel in Baltimore, where his team will face Stevenson on Wednesday. "We made a few more plays than they did and our goalie made a few more saves than theirs, but it was pretty even."
One of the standouts for the Jumbos against Stevens was Beau Wood, a sophomore out of Sherwood Forest, Md., who was caught behind Tufts' stacked attack unit last year. He had four goals and an assist versus the Ducks, and currently leads the team in goals (10) and points (15) after three games.
"What's great about our program is Beau did not play at all last year, and had to watch what Matt Witko and what some of those seniors did and went about their business," Daly said. "Beau did an unbelievable job in the weight room and put on a lot of good pounds and worked his tail off. He's a great reflection of all of our guys and the seniors. He put the work in and he's starting to see the results right now."
As productive as Wood was, the numbers for Kevin McCormick (one goal on seven shots) were a little low, especially after his five-goal, 21-shot performance against Connecticut College earlier in the week. Daly said there were extenuating circumstances, and that the decreased stats are consistent with Tufts' philosophy.
"They played a little bit of zone in the first half and a good amount through the course of the game, so a lot of stuff was coming in transition before we even got our offensive midfield on the field," Daly said. "Honestly, those guys didn't play that much yesterday. And with Kevin, he lets the game come to him and he had those opportunities in other games and I'm not sure he had as many opportunities. That's what's great about our team; we spread the scoring around. You can take care of that guy, and we've got other guys."
- Lynchburg's overtime win over Roanoke on Saturday night not only gave the Hornets' seniors their first win against the Maroons and snapped a five-game losing streak to 'Noke, but it essentially ensured that LC will be in the field when the brackets come out in May. Obviously, if the Hornets completely tank the rest of the season, all bets are off, but if they handle their business like they've been doing, but don't win the ODAC auto-qualifier, they'll still be in good shape.
- Two unbeatens fell this week. Goucher handed Mary Washington its first loss in overtime on Wednesday while Gwynedd-Mercy nipped first-year program Albright in extra time, handing the Lions their first-ever setback...congrats to Chris Kivlen, who picked up his first win as head coach of Montclair State when the Redhawks beat Manhattanville, 15-7...Geneseo can't buy a break. They lost their third one-goal game of the season to drop to 0-4...don't look now, but Ithaca is 4-0. We'll find out if the Bombers are for real on Friday night when they entertain Cortland...for the second straight year, Bates beat Wesleyan...as I look at Williams' remaining schedule, there aren't many more wins left on the slate...Whittier is about to commence its six-game, 12-day gauntlet that will determine whether they can grab a Pool B bid. It's starts on Tuesday when they play Babson.