The Deep South Lacrosse 2012 FHSAA District by District Preview! – Part 2
Well the 2012 Season is almost here we are previewing all of the districts one by one. This is the second of three installments. Please go check out the Districts 1-20 Preview here. Let’s take a look at the major changes that have taken place since last season, who is the team to beat in each district, and who are the guys to watch!! This week we bring you the previews for Districts 11-20. Please feel free to log in and leave your own thoughts or let us know how off-base we are! You can also use the contact form at the top of the page and send us the names of some players who you feel were left out. We will be happy to update the article with your thoughts. This year the District by District preview is being brought to you by Deep South Lacrosse. Deep South Lacrosse is located in Gainesville, FL. The website address is www.deepsouthlacrosse.com. The owners are R.J. Fuhr and Chad Hightower. Both owners are extremely passionate about growing the great game of lacrosse and also providing a retail store with plenty of selection in equipment and apparel. R.J. and Chad are more than store owners. They both have sons playing high school lacrosse and R.J. is the Head Coach at Trinity Catholic HS in Ocala, FL. Both have over twenty five years of coaching experience in youth athletics and love introducing lacrosse to so many new players in the Central Florida area. Please visit the store and also take a look at the website. You can also like Deep South Lacrosse on Facebook. We have learned that just in the last couple of days their entire inventory has started to arrive and the store is open and ready for business. District 11 – Lake Highland Prep, Bishop Moore, Boone, First Academy, Edgewater This may be the only district with three teams that will truly contend to win the district. But we could make a case that any one of them that gets out of this district has the potential to advance to the third round of the play-offs. The winner of this district will play the winner of District 10. The winner of that will go to the second round where they will likely face the winner of a Lake Mary – Lake Brantley game, which should be quite a battle. So you have a scenario where Lake Highland, Bishop Moore, or Boone is most likely going to play West Orange, a good team but not as fast and deep as Lake Mary or Lake Brantley. So after playing in a “Battle Royal,” either Lake Brantley or Lake Mary will turn around and face one of these three teams two days later. Given that situation you would have to say that all three of the big dogs in District 11 would have a shot. So who is it going to be? Lake Highland lost a ton of talent. Guess what, they still have a ton of talent. They are the State Champs and will be the State Champs until someone proves otherwise. The still have Davis Anderson, a senior midfielder and a three year starter. He led the team in ground balls for the past two seasons and he is going to be a Salisbury Seagull next year so you know Coach Spaulding is extra stoked about that. He will be lining up with another senior three year starter, Malcolm Clayton. He was second to Anderson in GB’s past two seasons. These two have been doing a ton of heavy lifting for the Highlanders for us the past two seasons. The top returning defensive player is Cody Prizer, a senior LSM and another three year starter. Prizer is super athletic and should be huge in the middle of the field for LHP this year. He is headed to the University of Tampa to play for Coach Whipple upon graduation. When you add the raw talent of Devon Lewis to the mix they will have plenty of speed and talent. Lewis, who is only a junior, has a ton or potential. He is certainly one of the young players to keep an eye on for the next couple of seasons. Defensively, Casey Irish was a starter last season as a sophomore and was LHP’s #1 BASE defender. He is an incredible athlete and they will be looking for a ton of leadership from him. On the attack end of the field Austin Tamayo will be the big gun this year. Tamayo is poised for a big senior season before heading up to Washington and Lee. He will be teaming up with two juniors who saw a lot of time last year, Clay Phillips and Billy Roll. They combined to play the third attack last season with Tamayo and Central Florida Player of the Year, Will Rotatori. Rotatori’s departure to Princeton will leave a big gap to fill, but probably not as large as the one left by Warren Berenis (W&L.) That job will most likely go to sophomore Alex Acuna. He will be leaning heavily on Irish, Prizer, and the Shepherdson twins to limit the looks their opponents get this year. Bishop Moore was good last year, and they return 22 players from that team. 18 of those are seniors. One big question is, “how will these guys respond to a new coach?” Danny Hogan is out, Craig Cook is in. Joey McMahan (University of Tampa) will be returning for his senior season leading an attack that was hurt by injury last season. If they stay healthy this year, this could be a much more potent offensive team. Addison Lanpher, senior midfielder, is returning as the leading scorer from last season. The Hornets should be able to count on him from plenty of goals this season, but with the starting attack back from injury he shouldn’t be shouldering the full offensive load. Defensively look for Alex Glazer to have another big season. The senior was 2nd team All-Central Florida last year. He will be playing in front of one of Central Florida’s best young goalies, sophomore Adam Sawicki. Sawicki, as a freshman, mad the All-Central Florida 3rd team last year and should have an even better season this year with a more mature offense keeping the ball at the other end of the field. Boone is, once again, a team with lots of potential. A lot of folks thought last year would be their year but they couldn’t get past Timber Creek to make it to the district finals. Now they have gone from the frying pan and into the fire! Boone would be an easy number one seed in many Districts, but they will have to fight like crazy again this year for a chance at the District championship. Up on attack Trey Muniz and John Kissick will continue to give defenses fits. Senior midfielders Scott Slovenkay and Brett Buch should both have break-out seasons. Defensively, Wes Linxwiller is one of the top d-poles in the state and should be fun to watch this season as he will be matched up on a few of the state’s top attackmen. First Academy is a solid team and they are building a very strong program, but this district is still too deep for them to contend for the championship just yet. They return all of their top scorers, senior middie Colin Kruger who netted 42 goals last year and senior attack Kevin Harrigan returns after a 35 goals season last year. The third leading scorer, Shawn Seagraves also returns to the attack as does Zack Oliver who scored 22 goals as a freshman last season. The Royal’s most notable loss is Nick Amburgey, a work horse F/O middie who scored 19 goals and managed a 72% face off win percentage. They will most likely be relying on Keenan Miller to do the work at the face off X this season. Goalie Austin Cotton will return for several more years. As an 8th grader last season he sported an impressive 9.1 GA average as he notched 12 victories between the pipes at the Varsity level. District 12 – Lake Howell, Oviedo, Trinity Prep, Winter Park Coach Ryan Healey has returned to Winter Park and they certainly have their eyes set on another district championship. Last year they defeated both Boone and Timber Creek to win a very competitive district despite numerous off-the field issues before falling to eventual state champion Lake Highland. Ryan Healey is one of Central Florida’s most respected coaches and we believe he will have the Wildcats back to playing that hard, fast, and clean style that made Winter Park one of Florida’s premier programs. However, Winter Park graduated 14 seniors from last year’s team, including most of the leading scorers. Coach Healey commented that, “This is the youngest team I can remember in Wildcat history.” But they will not be without talent. Sergio Salcido will provide plenty of speed at the midfield and is always a scoring threat. Solid at the Face off X as well, he will provide plenty of extra possessions for the Wildcats. Joining Salcido on the midfield will be Parker Snure Jr. a big powerful middie. Filling in some big shoes up on the attack will be rising star, Ty Price. The defense is anchored by senior Kyle Shepard and a pair of juniors, Hunter Chadwick and Blake Bell. They are looking for leadership this season out of goalie Reid DenBeste. They have a tough schedule featuring Lake Highland, Ponte Vedra, Lake Brantley, and Timber Creek. The Wildcats are also making a trip to Tampa to face the former Gulf Coast club league powerhouse Tampa Jesuit. Oviedo High School took eventual final four Lake Brantley to OT last season in the district championship game and came within a shot off the crossbar of winning the old district 6 championship. This year they will be led by 4 year starter Alex Perez (senior) in the goal. Austin Garrison-Free (senior) and Nathan Kellis (senior) anchor the defense this season. Oviedo has lost some experience at midfield and attack, but they do have some solid players returning from their talented junior and sophomore classes including Dakota Dunmire (sophomore), Greg Strobl (junior), and Mikal Wessel (junior). On attack they will look for Adam Bial (junior) to take over the reins with a very young and talented attack squad. Trinity Prep looks to pick up where they left off last season. They only graduated two seniors (both were d-poles) from last year’s 8-7 team and will be fielding a strong senior class this season. Trinity Prep has added two coaches to the staff during the off-season. Former Lake Mary assistant Michael Fronk will be joining the Saints staff this year along with former Lake Howell and UCF player Andrew Capo. Led by senior middie Dylan Davis (VMI) who led the team with 57 goals and senior LSM Ryan Hinkley (Washington & Lee) who scored 30 goals last year from his LSM position, they will look to step up an offense that never quite got over the hump last season. The attack was dealt a blow in the offseason with a football-related injury to junior Luke Macchia. The injury required shoulder surgery and he may be unavailable to begin the season. His absence will certainly put more pressure on an already young attack unit. Defensively, senior Jon Wiese, a three year starter will be a standout this season and will anchor the only unit on the team that was affected by graduation. Lake Howell may be coming off of a 7-9 season, but they did play Oviedo to a one goal game last year. The loss of leading scorer Keith Malberti will put the load on the shoulders of Matthew McGuffee to lead the offense. Long-time head coach Jeff Myers has moved over to lead the girls’ program so there are a lot of unknowns looking at this team. The district should come down to Winter Park and Oviedo, but Winter Park is very young this year and with youth, anything can happen. Oviedo lost quite a lot of offensive talent so who really knows. This district is a toss-up. The winner here will move on to face the winner of District 13, most likely Timber Creek. District 13 – East River, Hagerty, Timber Creek, University When we look at this district it’s hard to see someone other than Timber Creek walking away with it. We are sure that Hagerty has other plans, and they should play tough this year. But Timber Creek has Jake Rooney. If he’s not the most talented attackman in the state, he’s one of the top five. Jake should have a huge senior season before he packs up and heads to Hofstra. Scott Turner (junior) had a strong sophomore season and is ready for a break out year on the attack with Rooney. The Wolves also have a group of very experienced players that can run the midfield or be very effective on the attack like seniors Mason McBroom, Paul Kelly, and junior Skyler Vautier. Senior Rene Mata will be doing the ground ball work between the boxes and is a solid two –way middie for Timber Creek. Once again, the big question mark for Timber Creek will be the close defense. Last season injuries forced some less experienced guys to get in there and get the job done and they did a decent job. Some of those guys graduated, forcing turnover at that position again. You can always count on a Timber Creek team to show up tough, in shape, and ready to play. Hagerty graduated their “go-to” guy, John Savas, last season. We don’t think they will have as solid a two-way player as Savas on the roster this year, but look for Erick Marshall to put up some good numbers on the offensive end of the field. Austin Lenick should have a break out junior season as well. Last year they got thumped pretty well by Timber Creek, I’m sure they don’t plan on letting that happen again. Former Lake Mary coach Shaun Perkins has joined this program and will bring a ton of experience and positive energy to help Coach Ayad get this ship heading in the right direction. University is looking to overcome the fact that they lost virtually all of their scoring threats last year. They had a fantastic 2011 season, finishing for a winning record for the first time. They are already working hard and no doubt they intend to make a serious run at this district. They are counting on solid play from junior goalie Travis Petty. This will be his second season as a goalie and first year at the Varsity level. Junior Ryan Hill is a third year starter at LSM. Ryan is one of the highest skilled & fastest players on the team. Junior middie Keith McDavid is entering his 3rd year as a starter at mid-field. The youngest of the McDavid brothers is poised to make a name for himself. Coach McDonald says, “We are working hard to execute on the field success in District 13 vs. our rivals at Timber Creek.” District 14 – Dr. Phillips, Freedom, Lake Nona, Olympia, Windermere Prep District 14 is certainly not one of the more competitive districts in the state. But, hey, you know what? When the last week of April rolls around one of these teams will still be playing and Lake Highland, Boone, or Bishop Moore will be sitting at home! And then they get a BYE in the first round! Wow. So they will advance to play the winner of the 12 vs. 13 game. We think this district will come down to a championship game between Dr. Phillips and Olympia. Dr. Phillips won the meeting between these two teams last year. At Olympia Isaac Cohrs will be returning for his senior season. Cohrs play and dodges with great speed and can also shoot. He will be drawing the best pole in most games this year. Freedom and Lake Nona will be knocking at the door and looking to sneak into this championship game. Freedom has a couple of strong players to keep an eye on this year. Senior Christian Smith is going to have a big year for the Patriots. He is a big body that can run and the work he has been doing on his shooting and dodging will truly make him a threat. Junior Defenseman Greg Miles will play a major role for the Patriot defense. He is quick and has great feet. This makes him hard defensemen to beat. At Lake Nona junior Austin Howard, now playing at the midfield will cause a lot of poles and short sticks an issue keeping up with his speed. Junior Nick Sorraco, a small frame but a lightning quick dodger, Nick does an amazing job dodging with his head up and finding the open man. He does a great job of drawing doubles and getting others open. Nick also has solid stick skills and a great shot. WPS will be entering their first year as a full varsity team. The went 5-10 last year playing a hybrid JV/Varsity schedule…..Highlighted by 2 big wins over Winter Park JV. Some of the Windermere Prep pre-season all-district candidates are Kevin Babich at Attack, midfielder Nick Saunders, the X Man – Berke Ozel and on defense Rey Rivera. The goalie for WPS is Sam Dahan and should have a solid year between the pipes. District 15 – All Saints, Berkeley Prep, Cardinal Mooney, Jesuit, Tampa Catholic There have been a couple of interesting things happen since last season that should make this an interesting district to watch. First, Jesuit has joined this district. They have been the big dogs in the Tampa area club scene for a long time and played for the IA State Championship last season. While you can say what you want about the competition they have been playing in the Gulf Coast League, these guys went out to Texas last year and played D.C.’s Gonzaga and Dallas Jesuit as well as St. Louis University Jesuit. While they did drop two games to Dallas Jesuit and Gonzaga, they saw some national level competition. It’s our guess that they will be prepared for the jump into FHSAA competition. They are certainly the team to beat this season in District 15. Last year’s district champions, Cardinal Mooney were admittedly a little surprised by their own success last year. Maybe they did over achieve, but they graduated only a handful of seniors. They are getting their first incoming class of kids that have actually played in the youth leagues and folks at Cardinal Mooney feel the future is bright. Players to watch for are the three defensive captains, Goalie Andrew Sileo, and Defensemen Ben Walsh and Jack Liebold. Offensively they are expecting another great season out of Mike Kahl at attack. Their stud LSM, Chase Osterman, may miss a good portion of the season due to shoulder surgery. Last year Cardinal Mooney was great about spreading around the scoring. They have quite a few returners that have proven that they can score and win. You can bet that they aren’t planning on handing over the district championship without a fight.Tampa Catholic beat Cardinal Mooney in the first game of the season last year and then lost to them in OT at the District Championship tournament. No doubt a game they wish they could have back. But it’s a new season and they will have their chance. Another very interesting addition to this district is Joe Seivold as the new headmaster at Berkley Prep. Berkeley Prep, having suffered through an 0-11 season last year, isn’t exactly a lacrosse powerhouse. But we will venture to say that they now have the single most “lacrosse” qualified headmaster in the Florida Prep School scene. Joe Seivold most recently coached and worked at The Blake School in Minnesota. The Blake school won two state championships and churned out an amazing number of top college players. He has also coached at Durham Academy where he won multiple North Carolina state championships. He was a four time All-American at UNC and a member of the 1986 World Champion Team USA. We could go on and on with his impressive resume (which includes being the director of the Dixie Top 150 Lacrosse Camp) but suffice it to say that Berkeley Prep could not have a more positive influence at the top. By all accounts, Seivold is a fantastic guy and he is at Berkeley Prep for many more reasons than to create a winning lacrosse program, but it shouldn’t hurt having a guy like that around! All Saints Academy may not compete for this district championship, but we think they have the top goalie in this district. J.R. Willers (Shorter) is a solid ball stopper who can make quick, fast outlet passes and he is fun to watch. District 16 Bishop Verot, Canterbury School, Cypress Lake, Estero, Fort Myers, Riverdale Bishop Verot – Vikings Coach Dan Krispinsky welcomes back a solid core of players from their 2011 12-2 campaign. Led by Attacker Marc Krispinsky and Goalie Austin Suarez, the Vikings will be a strong candidate to win the district. Athletic and fast makes BV a tough match up. Estero – The Wildcats return ton of talent from their 14-1 Club season last year. Losing only to Tampa Jesuit, they know how to win. Led by Jr. All- American Attacker James Renner, they can score a lot. But the defense is stingy and will present a strong district challenge to BV for supremacy. Cypress Lake & Fort Myers both return talent on both sides of the field. Whether they are deep enough to challenge the two leaders of the district for a playoff spot remains to be seen. Canterbury School (Fort Myers) and Riverdale round out the district. Other players to watch include; Goalie: Jesse Crowel (Fort Myers), Neil Marten (Riverdale) Defense: Curtis Mere (Riverdale), Austin Ciresi (Fort Myers), Tyler Butcher (Estero) Midfield: Ryan Carr (Estero), Bryant Cole (Fort Myers), Joey Colatarci (Cypress Lake), Jackson Heintz (Estero) Attack: Alex Cooper (Cypress Lake), Dylan Weissinger (Riverdale), Max Margolin (Fort Myers), Zane Smith (Bishop Verot) District 17 Golden Gate, Gulf Coast, Immokalee, and Palmetto Ridge Gulf Coast (Naples) – New coach Bob Miller has a cupboard full of young talent. Led by Jr. AJ Carter, Sophomore Jordan Briggs and MS All-American & Freshman Sterling Desourcy, the Sharks are the favorite for District 17. Golden Gate (Naples) – Cody Curtsinger is the BEST attacker you have never heard of. Great hands and a shot in the 90’s give Coach John Sivillo a go-to guy when it counts. Expect GGHS to challenge for a playoff spot in 2012. Palmetto Ridge (Naples) and Immokalee round out the district. District 18 Barron Collier, Community School, Lely, Naples Barron Collier (Naples) – Former Bucknell Assistant Trent Carter takes over for Matt Hunter at BC. They are the defending champs and the heavy favorite to win the district again. The Cougars are loaded with offensive talent, featuring Senior Skye Sickles (M). Senior Goalie Hunter Krout is a tall and imposing player in the cage. The defense is a seasoned bunch led by Senior Brendan Thomas. The lower classes are loaded with talent and the victory train should just keep rolling for the Cougars. A challenging schedule will have them primed for a long playoff run. Community School (Naples) – Graduation devastated the Seahawks, with their top players either graduating or leaving. Jack Enyon will have to carry a lot of weight this year for CSN to match their 2010 win total. District 19 Holy Trinity, Melbourne Central Catholic, Merritt Island, Satellite, Viera, West Shore This is another new district featuring brand new teams, former club teams, and existing FHSAA teams. Viera was the best of the club teams, finishing 15-2 while rolling over Merritt Island and Satellite, but they did not play a strong schedule. Brevard Public Schools move from SFIA to FHSAA. Coach Mike Leary moved from Satellite to Holy Trinity Episcopal and Coach Rich Rogers (former Melbourne Central Catholic Coach) takes over for Leary at Satellite. Apparently, several players left Satellite with the departure of Leary moving onto private schools (Holy Trinity and Melbourne Central Catholic). Westshore High School has made the jump from JV to Varsity this season. Of the FHSAA teams, Holy Trinity struggled last season finishing 1-12 while scoring 2 goals or less in 9 of those twelve losses. They just don’t have much offensive fire-power. We are going to pick Melbourne Central Catholic to take this district. They finished 8-5 last season under new head coach Peter Mercaldo. MCC has a solid history of putting competitive teams on the field in all sports. Players to watch in this district include; A Scott Keith – Satellite – Senior – M Scott Arnold – Melbourne Central Catholic – Junior M Michael Leary – Holy Trinity – Sophomore M Drew Meldrum – Merritt Island – Sophomore A Michael Alvarez – Viera – Senior A Kevin Rego – Viera – Senior M Chris Jones – Viera – Senior M Austin Wear – Viera – Junior D Matt Banks – Viera – Senior Also look for returning All-District standouts Michael Sharpe and Sam Goodwin to have another solid year at MCC. District 20 John Carroll, Sebastian River, St. Edward’s, Vero Beach They took last year’s District 11 and moved MCC and Holy Trinity out and Sebastian River in. But Vero Beach is still the team to beat in in this district. The winner here will move on to face the winner of the District 19 tournament. We predict that Vero Beach will move out of this district, beat MCC in the first round and then face the winner of the District 21-22 match up. Sebastian River has added new head coach Mike Beatty and they are certainly getting ready for the move into FHSAA, but coming off of a 2-12 season in the IA the will have their work cut out for them. Watch out for Matt Hughes and coming out of Vero Beach this season. He should have a huge season. On the defensive end of the field watch for a pair of juniors, Treyson Pierce and Max Muller. The big news at at St. Ed’s is the transfer of Chas Moody. Terrell Sands earned All-District honors as a freshman last year. He should be poised for a break out sophomore season at the LSM position. John Carroll senior goalie Ryan Slack should have a good year if his defense can avoid giving up to many shots on the crease.