LANCASTER, Pa. – With eight returning starters, an athletic roster and team full of depth at every position, coach Todd Cavallaro expects big things for the Diplomats in 2013.
"Every year we get bigger, faster and stronger," said Cavallaro. "This year we added more depth at every position and this team is by far the most athletic team I've had here at F&M."
F&M put together the best season since 2003 last year with a 10-5 mark and has improved its record every season for the previous three seasons. The Diplomats had three games decided by two goals or less go the other way last season and the key this season will be turning the close losses into victories.
"If we can continue to focus on the little things this year and get better everyday, it will be exciting to see where this team finishes," commented Cavallaro.
Below is a position-by-position breakdown of the 2013 Diplomats.
Cameron Setian returns in goal for the third-straight season. The junior started in 28 games in the past two seasons and ranked third in the Centennial Conference (CC) with a 7.36 goals against average and the second-best save percentage at 58.2 percent. He finished the year with 138 saves and a 9-5 record.
"Cameron gained valuable experience over the previous two seasons and he will be looked upon to run the defense from the cage this year," Cavallaro said.
Beury is coming off a strong junior season in which he led the team with 18 caused turnovers and collected 38 groundballs. Kanter caused 16 turnovers with 37 groundballs and will move from long stick to close defense. Pelaez battled through some injuries last season, but still played in 12 contests and ended with 18 groundballs and eight turnovers.
Long Stick Midfield
James King will be a four-year starter on defense and moved from close defense to long stick midfield. The senior had 22 groundballs with 14 caused turnovers and tallied a goal last season.
Short Stick Defensive Midfield
"This is the toughest position in lacrosse and we are very fortunate to have these three at that position," Cavallaro said.
Gaines (17gb, 3ct) and McLean (11gb, 8ct) saw action is all 15 contests last season while Blevins collected 35 groundballs, mainly from the wing position on face-offs.
Replacing four-year starter and All-American Andrew Setian will not be an easy task and will be done by committee.
Reichert saw action in all 15 games and tallied 12 goals with three assists while Barr dished out four assists to go along with 12 goals. Ross played in 12 contests with six goals.
F&M returns 54 points with seniors Billy Kempner and Tristan Miller returning to attack. Kempner led the team with 24 goals and dished out seven assists while Miller scored on 21 occasions before a season-ending injury.
Sophomore John Barney and freshman Michael Bossidy are both phenomenal athletes and will make their way onto the field. Junior Jeff Newton and sophomore Clark McMahon are excellent off-ball players and will rotate in at attack.
"We have a great group of attack players that bring a different skillset to field and all will be utilized this year," commented Cavallaro.
Cavallaro will be joined on the sideline by Casey Kear, Randy Marks and Roly Shover, along with first-year assistant Scott Meehan.
Getting through the season will not be an easy task. In addition to the always-competitive CC schedule, F&M faces some difficult non-conference opponents as well. No. 9 Lynchburg and perennial power Washington & Lee along with No. 8 Dickinson, No. 15 Washington and No. 16 Gettysburg all show up on F&M's schedule this year.
The Diplomats open the season at home on Feb. 23 against the No. 9 Lynchburg Hornets. Game time is set for 1:00 p.m.