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The Maroon

Rambling at 5AM

OK - this started out as a post about Women's basketball (which was on the Men's basketball forum) and then I went on a bender and tackled everything. I'd be interested to start a thread on the last part where I name my favorite player for each program over the years - although my picks are weighed heavily toward my time at the school and when I don't know the sport very well - the record book.

SixtyEighter wrote:
I watched the girl's game yesterday. Fighters or not- they just can't play .They were standing around looking at each other like statues while Jamie O'Hare dribbled in circles trying to find a way to dish it or shoot.

Not sure how we got wrapped up in the women's team on the men's section - but it's that kind of  year.
From what I've seen - and it isn't nearly what I used to see - you're pretty much dead on.

Let's face it - we can all go back through he archives and read the early praise when coach Nolan took over. i remember seeing her first home game at KSC against Brian and boldly telling another member of this board that it was a "whole new era" and i anticipated us moving out from the doldrums in a couple of years. It didn't happen. That first year we had Virgin, Jackson and of course Wright which for my money was the best recruiting cass we had in years - second only to the class with Purr, Garner, Spicer et al. I loved watching those girls - - in an odd sort of way. As screwed up as things got - they never seened to give up on Tammy - they had a couple of inexplicable late - season wins early in Tammy's tenure that could only be explained by tenacity (including a win over first place American in the last game one year, and a beautiful run in the PL tournament when my girl Garner was a senior. Love watching the fight that VVDV, Garner, Purr Spicer, Virgin, Wright and Jackson brought to things. Remember a couple of serious injuries hurt Tammy's rebound - Serowoky was a gem by all accounts but injuries plagued her career There was also a nice player from Nazareth whose name excapes me - but she could have helped. EVERT team has injuries - but we could ill lafford them at the fragile state of the program.
Nolan inherited an odd situation - Fiacco (and her stat line is one of the best of all time so this isn't a criticism) was beyond reproach but we were two separate teams with her in there. We couldn't press, play man, or really be aggressive when she was in. When she was out we became an average to poor defensive team that lacked rebounding power. Short of shuffling her out every position - I dont know what they could have done.

The players never seemed to quit on Tammy but they certainly appeared to do so with Nolan. Some things I never got was they Brya Freeland, who had a promising frosh campaign, basically became an afterthought once O'Hare came to town. O'Hare was NOT ready to sholder the load she was asked to carry. Her shot fundamentals were way off, she was trying to do everything. I say this because she's evolved one hell of a lot and leaves with a legacy she can be justifiably proud.

But seriously - VVDV, Garner, Spicer, Purr, Wright, Virgin, - maybe I'm over-exagerating their contributions but I'd say Smith has more above-regular scholarship recruits over the past few years (and some weren't even on scholarship) - than Nolan did in her five.

Tammy was over her head at the beginning - no doubt. Fisher faced the same situation Tammy did for her final three years and won 21 games over that period. Tammy won 7. Tammy initially went out there and tried to Paul Westhead it with marginal team speed and even worse shooting. She had to overhaul a lot.

My case is - as much as we annointed Nolan a savior early on - her tenure in many ways was no better than vs. Tammy's over the last five seasons.

Neither got it done. Maybe it's the environment, maybe it's admissions - but I'm just NOT going to hear that it was due to our gym. You're telling me these girls are watching games in Stabler and are such in awe of the place we lose them immediately?

It's nice to see coach Grentz with a plan - as neither of our last two coaches seemed to have one.

One thing I notice about virtually ALL sports but certainly basketball - we land a solid recruiting class and then we seem to mail it in for the next 2 to 3 seasons. The men's team had the studs last year - and now we're left with Lindner and a lot of question marks. I'm not going to get on O'hanlon. - He's an amazing coach. We just seem to be having the worst year possibly since he took over the ship.

Dennis Bohn seems to be losing his edge a bit too. He certainly has had a great amount of success and was one of Bruce's best hires.

I was surprised to see that our volleyball budget is as substantial as it is - but maybe that talent pool just isn't that deep. The success that program has had over the years seems to have begun and ended with Veronica Cato-Ponce - who Xbo pointed out was a once-in-a-generation player.

I don't know about you guys - but I'm actually pretty excited about men's lacrosse. Full disclosure - if there was a team I couldn't stand at Lafayette and at my high school it was the lacrosse team. They were always cockier than hell and managed to win about 24% of their games. But I'm becoming a believer in coach Ski, I think his learning curve is almost over and he seems to be a players coach (exception noted on a couple games last year when it looked like we quit). Our league is just so damn tough - but Bogey has me thinking .500 or better and that ain't bad!

Thanks to Andy I'm not as dismally dreading football next year - that dude always finds a way to see the positives and this board needs that. That's another team that could get exponentially better and that damn schedule might not reflect it. I'm honestly not nuts about this recruiting class overall - but it's kind of a screw move to diss them before they step foot on campus for their first practice. For now I'll assume the class has the next Brad Maurer Erik Marsh, Andy Romans, my MAN Larry Johnson (he's my Emily Garner on the football team), Matt Cope, Mo Bennet - ok you get the point. I'll buy it - this is our best bunch or recruits in decades!

This whole thing has me thinking of my favorite players of all time in each sport (keep in mind I've only been watching since 89 - and some of my picks may be truly asinine. I apologize in advance.  For the most part I picked undoubtedly great players - and tiebreakers went to people I like more. This isn't necessarily the best - although in many cases I would argue they are - it's just my favorites.

Men's Basketball - Brian Ehlers...The quiet assassin, let the game come to him and did everything he needed to do to win.

Women's basketball - Emily Garner - undersized but fought like hell - always did things I didn't think she could do.

Football - LJ - I figure I should get the easy ones out of the many times was he right in the face of the punt returner?

Men's Lacrosse: Steve Serling - Could be an idiotic pick but he was the leader for the team during our 4 weeks of glory in 2010.

Women's Lacrosse: Andrea Dagostino - Amazing. A joy to watch. Only dilemma was deciding between Lacrosse and field hockey on which to give it to her.

Field Hockey - Could probably give this to Dagostino again - but I'll split the award between Suzie Farrell and Deanna DiCroce.

Women's Soccer: The one and only Heidi Caruso. - OK - the level of play was pretty poor when she played. It was kick and run soccer - but Heidi was the premier player of that era. That other girl from Hershey - Myers - she was a bad ass too. I used to love watching her play.

Men's Soccer: Mark Dutkewych - two time defensive player of the year. A lot of women thought he was cute - I admired that about him.

Volleyball - Veronica Cato-Ponce. I don't even think I can name a volleyball player from when I was a student - this girl dominated.

Softball:  Christina Giambrone. It's a shame she got somehow screwed out of playing her senior year Plus my daughter went to softball camp when she was there and LOVED her.

Baseball: i'm going with Matt Kamine as Antolick didn't finish

I'm hearing that the next Veronica Canto Ponce may be on the court next spring.

Re: Rambling at 5AM

Great thread
Like you I am not close to all the sports and I will pass on some

Baseball…Walt Manual Great hitter, Hall of Fame,fantastic glove and big factor on his college world series team. He played basketball as well.
Played in the Yankee organization for a time. Those Charlie Gelbert teams were the golden age of Lafayette baseball.

Football Erik Marsh all time leading rusher 4,834 yards and all purpose yards 5569 signed with the Jets

Men's Basketball tie between Brian Ehlers and Tracy Tipucka

Women's Basketball Emily Garner
Men's Lacrosse- pass I guess I could go with Serling

Women's Lacrosse-Heather McClelland was 5th in the nation in scoring 3.78 gpg  College leader in career goals.

Field Hockey- Deanna DiCroce played against really tough competition including UNC Maryand and was on on two PL champs and NCAA teams. tie with Megan Monahan who owns virtually every PL offensive record. Also played on two PL champs and NCAA teams. Still hold PL record in scoring. Should be in the HOF and would be a travesty if not elected for it this fall

Women's Soccer- Heidi Caruso great all around athlete

Volleyball no idea

Softballl can't name anyone

Men's soccer-Mark Dutkywych great defender and captain his team actually advance in the NCAA tournament
Franks Tanks

I know that very few people alive today(if any) saw him play, but I am going way back to Charlie Berry.

The guy played in the NFL and the Major Leagues.

Football- 1924 Walter Camp All-American (this was the real big boy All-American team).  Member of the College Football HOF.  Key member of the 1925 Pottsville Maroon's NFL championship team (vacated).

Baseball- Hard to find his college baseball stats, but he played 9 years in the majors, most notably with Connie Mack's Philadelphia A's.  

In the recent era

Football- Frank Baur and Marsh.  Frank was on the cover of SI and created significant buzz around Lafayette Football.  Marsh was a great player, but was also a big name recruit. He came in wit huge expectations, and lived up to his lofty potential.  Maybe not the biggest or fastest RB ever to play in the league, but had tremendous feel and "vision" with the ball.

Charlie Francis Berry, born 10/18/02 in Phillipsburg, NJ., died 9/6/72 in Evanston, IL.

1925 Athletics 10 games, hit .214
1928 - 1931 Boston hit .260,.242,.289,.283
1932 Boston & Chicago hit.291
1933 Chicago hit .255
1934 - 1938 Athletics .268,.253, limited AB last 2 years

Career 11 years, .267 2Bs-88, 3Bs-29, HR-23  BA-.267

BTW: His father Charles Joseph Berry played 43 games in the majors in 1884

RE: Charlie Berry don't forget he reffed the Giants-Colts OT game called the greatest game ever played by most NFL historians and he was the only man ever to ref in both the NFL and Major League Baseball.
The Maroon

Remember - I'm looking for favorites - doesn't have to be the "best." Larry Johnson probably isn't remembered outside of a  handful of us while Erik Marsh will be remembered for a long time. I just loved the way LJ played - same with Garner. Caruso and her steals were fun to watch in hoops - it was ridiculous. 14 in one game against Kansas State!

Some I saw play and they were my favorite because they were just..the best...Caruso in soccer, Dagostino (Suzie Farrell did some damage in lacrosse too), Dutkevich (sp) was unappreciated - most of the campus had no idea how good that guy was. Same with former safety Matt Cope - who was probably my second choice for favorite FB player. Marsh got plenty of love - and always will. Giambrone was the highlight of decades of futility in softball and Cato Ponce you only had to see once to appreciate. For baseball and lacrosse - I had to dig through the stats.

Favorites in basketball are the kind of guys I wish we had every year. Guys like Bruce Stancavage, Chet Brightful, Andy Brown, Craig White, Sean Knitter and Winston Davis.
Guys like Levi Giese and Frank Barr, Tom Kresge and Joey Azzinaro. And many more.
Guys who worked hard and played hard and seemed to enjoy the game.
On the women's side, Purr always gave everything she had.
The Maroon

bethlehempard wrote:
Favorites in basketball are the kind of guys I wish we had every year. Guys like Bruce Stancavage, Chet Brightful, Andy Brown, Craig White, Sean Knitter and Winston Davis.
Guys like Levi Giese and Frank Barr, Tom Kresge and Joey Azzinaro. And many more.
Guys who worked hard and played hard and seemed to enjoy the game.
On the women's side, Purr always gave everything she had.

That's a hodgepodge of choices on the men's side! I was pretty close to the program for a while - some of those guys DEFINITELY weren't having fun. With that said - if they kept the problems off the court that says something.

But you mentioned a name that's going to replace what seemed to be my obvious choice for favorite basketball player: Craig White. I knew Bus very well - lived with him a year. Now THAT was a passionate dude. He'd have me in the gym at midnight rebounding for him. He was a dude you'd want on any team - I realize this is sounding like something you just say after someone passes - but Craig was a special guy. People expected a ridiculous amount from him because he had a body that looked like he was meant to play ball - and he followed Otis Ellis from Germantown so people assumed he'd pick up where Otis left off. You can't imagine how hard that guy worked - and yes, how much he loved the game.

Craig Kowadla was in that category too...I know these teams didn't win much - but both of them would gladly have given up a lot of their points for more wins - the support wasn't there. But Kowadla loved the game too.

On the girls side I gotta give a shoutout to Colleen Fitzpatrick who played on some absolutely dismal teams in the early part of the century. She's another one who people can argue wouldn't have had the numbers on decent teams (4th all-time leading scorer, 8th in rebounding)- but I never saw any hint of quit in her - she seemed to love the game too. Also remember a name most of you don't know - Stacy Farrow - that played in the early 90's...She was TOUGH - the kind of player you want to go to war with.

A couple of those guys didn't get the minutes they expected for sure, but they seemed like good guys. Kowadla is a good choice and around 1980, Kevin Lewis? I think his name was, he was fun to watch. A little crazy sometimes. The transfer from Drake, Pleick (spelling) another good one. He got robbed of a year.
I remember Craig W. And a couple other guys from that team hanging out in Allentown from my single days. Good guys.

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