Nike/US Lacrosse Midwest Region Report
by Jonah Rosenblum | LaxMagazine.com
Player of the Week
Ethan Walker, Culver Academy (Ind.)
In games against Top 25 teams last week Walker proved to rise to the competition. In a game against Gilman (Md.) he had three goals and two assists to help the Eagles to an 11-10 victory. He led the team with five goals in a 13-9 win over McDonogh (Md.) two days later.
Notable: Jason Alessi, Brother Rice (Mich.); Riley Thompson, Culver Academy (Ind.);
GAME OF THE WEEK
Upper Arlington (Ohio) at Dublin Jerome (Ohio), April 2
It's a rematch of last year's thrilling Division I championship game, in which the Golden Bears prevailed 7-6. Though Upper Arlington boasts 14 state championships, Dublin Jerome is not far behind. It was a bad-luck rebound to Golden Bears senior Cam Marsh that doomed the Celtics last season. Dublin Jerome coach A.J. Auld said after last year's state title loss that coming close wasn't good enough. Well, unlike last year's state title game, which took place on Upper Arlington's home field, this one is at Dublin Jerome. Will the luck, and result, turn the Celtics' way this time?
Midwest Region Top 10
1. Culver Academy (Ind.), 7-0
The Eagles made a powerful stand last week, not only as one of the top teams in the Midwest, but as one of the top teams in the country, with three victories over Maryland teams. Their four-goal win over McDonogh (Md.) may have been their best yet.
2. Brother Rice (Mich.), 1-0
Handed a difficult three-game road stretch to start, the Warriors took a solid first step with a win over New Trier (Ill.). The win snapped a three-game losing streak out-of-state. Michigan still has to prove it can beat Ohio's best, however, as well as Culver Academy (Ind.).
3. Loyola Academy (Ill.), 0-2
Much like the female Ramblers who feast on out-of-state competition, the Loyola Academy boys have taken on top out-of-state talent, but met a humbling result with a 20-4 loss to Maryland powerhouse Boys' Latin.
4. Upper Arlington (Ohio), 0-0
The Golden Bears are worth watching early on, with several strong foes on the docket including Liberty Olentangy, off to a 4-0 start.
5. Dublin Jerome (Ohio), 1-0
The Celtics' 24-2 opening performance likely will not be repeated for a while, certainly not with Upper Arlington (Ohio) and New Trier (Ill.) next on their schedule.
6. New Trier (Ill.), 1-1
Following an 0-8 record against out-of-state competition in 2012, the Trevians have acquitted themselves far better in 2013 and 2014, including a respectable home effort against Brother Rice (Mich.) on Friday.
7. Liberty-Olentangy (Ohio), 4-0
A remarkable road trip through Virginia should give the Patriots confidence, as their offense exploded in two decisive wins. They'll need that confidence for a brutal stretch of Buckeye State play that includes Upper Arlington (Ohio), Mason (Ohio) and Worthington Kilbourne (Ohio).
8. Christian Brothers (Mo.), 5-0
The Cadets' remarkable turnaround continued with a tight victory over Saint Viator (Ill.), right after the Lions gave MICDS (Mo.) a tough fight. The Cadets are here to stay.
9. MICDS (Mo.), 4-0
One of Missouri's best programs showed its chops with a win over Saint Viator (Ill.), but the offense has been a little spotty at times.
10. Olentangy (Ohio), 2-0
A dominant defensive effort against a usually respectable Glenbrook North (Ill.) team should have the Braves on the region's radar. Their only two losses in 2013 came to Dublin Jerome (Ohio).
Beyond his success on the lacrosse field, Brother Rice's Jason Alessi also led his school to a football state title with a 91-yard touchdown return. "About as pure of an athlete as you will find with the best feet in the business," according to Brother Rice coach Ajay Chawla, Alessi will be counted on to lead a young Warriors attack. Marty Budner's story for Observer & Eccentric reveals the central role Alessi can expect to play on a Warriors team missing a familiar face on the sidelines.
Last season, Detroit County Day (Mich.) managed just 22 goals during a miserable five-game losing streak. Well, the Yellowjackets have 69 through their first five this season. More importantly, Detroit County Day has been consistent with five double-digit performances and five wins. Could this be the region's comeback team of the year following a 12-9 campaign in 2013?
2014 Midwest Region Report Archive
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