Compiled and Written by Gary Groob
Lax Philly – A Division of Edge of Philly Sports Network
TD Ierlan, Mitch de Snoo, Jason Noble, Phil Mazzuca
Scott Dominey, Damon Edwards, Johnny Powless, David Brock, Brock Sorenson
While people will look at the losses saying the defense is depleted, I prefer to say the glass is half full. A much younger, bigger, and faster defense is now at hand on the Rock, and no team will be able to take liberties on them.
While nothing replaces experience, having 2nd, and 3rd year veterans like Adam Jay, Aaron Forster, and Josh Jubenville, plus the return of a healthy Latrell Harris, combined with Veterans such as Challen Rogers, Brandon Slade, Mitch de Snoo, Brad Kri, Jason Noble, Bill Hostrawser, and Sheldon Burns, and you have a mean, tough defense, that can also contribute in transition with speed, and soft hands, keeping the opposition off balance on most games.
Zach Manns, Dan Craig, Reid Reinholdt, Dan Dawson, Rob Hellyer, Tom Schreiber, as well as Adam Jay, Jamison Dilks, and Justin Scott show that the mixture of veterans with youth is also very prevalent on the offense.
A big change in the offensive is the exit of former player and coach Blaine Manning. Enter Hall of Famer Colin Doyle, and former Bandits assistant coach, Rusty Kruger.
The new look offense now is more dangerous inside, with no fear of crashing the net, keeping defenses on their toes.
Nick Rose has gotten more and more reliable year after year, and in my opinion is in the top five in the league. Having Brandon Miller return as the goaltending coach will help develop Rose even further, as well as help Riley Hutchcraft become the goalie we all know he is capable of being on a consistent basis.
While Brad Kri has done an admirable job at the X, he is not a bona fide faceoff guy the likes of a Trevor Baptiste, Jake Withers, or a Bob or Geoff Snider.
Enter TD Ierlan…
Outdoors with Albany, Yale, and Denver, Ierlan won an unbelievable 75.3% of his faceoffs which is the highest by any player in NCAA DI history with 500 attempts. In the box, the Rock have found different levels of success in recent years, but those type of numbers put up by Ierlan are difference makers if he can translate them indoors.
To Sum It Up:
This team was on the verge of doing great things before the season was stopped in 2020, but the team heading to the floor in 2021-22 is even stronger in all departments. This makes them one of the favorites in the early Vegas gambling lines.
Can this team be the first in league history to win a seventh championship? I would say if they can stay healthy, they can certainly make a run at it, but if nothing else, they will be an exciting team to watch.
Gary Groob has been involved with Lacrosse for the majority of his life, whether playing, coaching, or covering the sport for the media.
An avid fan, with a real drive about helping to “grow the game”, Gary became part of podcasts about the game in 2010. Through the podcasts, Mr. Groob was given an opportunity to write about lacrosse, and the rest as they say, is history.
Through many miles (flying and driving) Gary has made inroads with the National Lacrosse League, Major Series Lacrosse League, the Ontario Lacrosse Association, as well as the Arena Lacrosse League, covering the leagues, their teams, and players, working for, and in concert with all of them.
In the year 2020, Mr. Groob was made the media person for the Arena Lacrosse League, voted onto the board of directors of the Brampton Excelsiors Lacrosse Club, as well as being made administrator of the Lacrosse page “Global Lacrosse” with a membership of 9000 members in over 90 Countries. Gary was also made an administrator of Lacrosse History Past Present and Future in 2022.
Mr. Groob co-hosts a weekly Lacrosse show on Spanglish Sports World, and ZingoTV channel 250, as well as writes a weekly lacrosse column for La Portada Canada News (both in print, and online).
Gary also hosts a Lacrosse talk show and podcast for The Edge of Philly Sports Network, seen live Sunday nights at 9pm (ET), and archived on the Edge of Philly YouTube page, as well as Spotify.
Mr. Groob’s other sports interests include Hockey, Football, Boxing, Wrestling, and Baseball, competing competitively in Boxing and Wrestling for many years.