Written by Sports Information Student Assistant, Jake Sipes-Salter
HANOVER, Ind. - The start of the 2019 Hanover men's lacrosse season is just under a month away, which means it is time to commence the annual three-part preview series, this year beginning with the defenders and goalkeepers.
The goalkeepers will continue to be backstopped by junior Noah Dubrava (Centerville, Ohio), who from day one has been one of the best among the Panthers' competition. After garnering Ohio River Lacrosse Conference Honorable Mention for his play in 2017, he raised the bar to earn 2018 All-ORLC First Team honors.
In his sophomore campaign, Dubrava had a save percentage of .589, including a .694 mark against conference foes. His goal-against-average made a significant jump from year one to two, as he improved from 10.06 to 8.75. His average against league opponents was even more impressive, as he allowed just 5.63 scores per game to ORLC institutions.
Perhaps his best outing of the 2018 season came against Chatham (Pa.), where he had 18 saves en route to a 13-5 victory for the Blue and Red. Adding depth to the netminders is freshman Sean O'Meara (Lexington, Ky.), who will look to build his skillset and gain important experience alongside Dubrava.
The defenders are headed by junior Andrew Trachtman (Carmel, Ind.), who in the spring received his second ORLC All-Second Team selection for his play on the back end. He followed up 23 caused turnovers his freshman season by posting 27 takeaways in 2018. Per contest, Trachtman had 1.97 disruptions to rank among the leaders in NCAA Division III. In a well-rounded appearance against Westminster (Pa.), Trachtman grabbed a season-high six groundballs and caused four turnovers.
Also shoring up the defensive side of the ball is senior Evan Bartlett (Oxford, Ohio), who in 2018 set personal bests for groundballs and caused turnovers in a season, notching 32 and 21 in the respective categories. It was also the most that Bartlett has played in a year, having appeared and started in 17 games, both career-highs. In his most recent outing, a May 2 showdown with Transylvania in the ORLC Semifinals, Bartlett corralled four groundballs while forcing four giveaways.
Senior Keaghan Holland (Evansville, Ind.) and sophomore Max Kleiman (Hudson, Ohio) are the other two returning defenders with Trachtman and Bartlett. As a freshman, Kleiman made 14 starts and played in 16 of the 17 contests last year. In his playing time, he caused 12 turnovers while snagging six groundballs.
The defenders will welcome a pair of new faces into the fold in freshmen Kyle Kaiser (Batavia, Ohio) and Jackson Parrish (Noblesville, Ind.), who will look to add to a group that forced 160 total turnovers in 2018.
The men, who will be competing in the newly created Heartland Collegiate Lacrosse Conference, will open play at 1 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 23 when they host non-league foe Centre (Ky.). The Panthers have opened four consecutive campaigns against the Colonels, with three of the matchups occuring on Hanover's home turf.
Contact: Tyler Jester