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Liberty Boys' Lacrosse Ready To Take The Next Step Toward A Championship
The Liberty boys' lacrosse team has reloaded after reaching the Class 2A/1A state semifinals last season.
The Lions have an experienced roster and have opened the season with six consecutive victories. Liberty is averaging 12.5 goals per game and allowing just five -- that balance has been a key part of the success.
"We need to be consistent and improve every time we take the field -- be it for practice or games, we want to work to be better," Liberty head coach Mike Flemming said. "The strength of our team comes from our seniors' experience -- most who started to play on the varsity team as sophomores. We have a great mix of talented underclassmen. We need to continue to play with intensity and up to the level of our team goals and expectations."
The attack is led by senior Jared Cirulli, who has emerged as one of the top offensive weapons in the metro area. Last season, he led Carroll County with 68 goals and 37 assists for 105 points. Cirulli has continued to dominate this year and scored seven goals during a 14-10 victory against a powerful Glenelg team April 4.
"Jared continues to improve every offseason, but we wait until after the season to recognize how much," Flemming said. "He is playing with more confidence. He has a tremendous lacrosse IQ and a great shot. He is extremely unselfish and is happy to assist as much as score. He plays equally well with his right and left hands. He is successful despite teams keying on him and being the focus of a defense, but when they do try to shut him down, he opens up the rest of the team."
Jack Boyer and Mark Conway have also been solid on the attack.
Liberty has shown great balance this season. Flemming credits Nick Griffin, Kevin Lynch and Jordan Santis for being especially tough on defense. Also playing key roles are Jack Myers, long-stick middie Nick Bonomo and goalie Evan McCarthy
Faceoff specialist Jason Stead has played a vital role in helping Liberty dominate in possession. The midfield has been led by Michael Smith, Nate Lamb, Paul Fiscella, Jarrett Pfeifer and Noah Rohrer.
PNC Lacrosse Spotlight:
Mount Hebron Senior Goalie Casey DuBois
Casey DuBois is one of the dominant goalies in the Baltimore-metro area. Last season, he allowed 4.2 goals per game and was named a US Lacrosse All-American. DuBois has been dominant again this season, once again allowing less than five goals per game. He has committed to Army West Point.
What made you want to play goalie? What are the biggest challenges with playing that position?
Casey DuBois: I always wanted to play goalie ever since I started playing lacrosse. One game when my rec team didn't have a goalie, I volunteered. Ever since then, I fell in love with the position. The biggest challenge for me is definitely keeping my attitude and mental game in check. It took me a while as a kid to be able to get scored on and shake it off. I feel like now I am very composed, but it has been difficult to stay calm, being as competitive as I am. I hate being scored on.
How did you prepare for the upcoming season? Did you do anything differently as far as strength training or running?
CD: I did a lot to prepare for the season. I went to Axis Sports Performance three times a week in the fall and winter. I really focused on becoming more of an athlete in the goal this time around. I also have worked with multiple goalie coaches who I owe all the credit to for making me the goalie I am. John Weston has worked with me for over eight years now. He's taught me just about everything I know. Brian Phipps has also been a huge help and a mentor to me along the way. Lastly, when my goalie coaches aren't available, me and my dad go out and work on refining my technique in the goal.
What are your goals for the upcoming season? Have you taken on more of a leadership role?
CD: My biggest goal is to win a state championship. Although player of the year, All-American and All-Metro have been on my mind, my team and I are really determined to be one of the few teams who end the year with a win.
I feel like I take a big leadership role on the team. Along with myself, we have 17 other seniors on the team who back me. I think the biggest leadership on our team has come from my defense. They are absolutely phenomenal. I have so much trust in Matt Leone, Shahin Manasterli, Peter Karmilowicz and Bryce Brookhart. They are so good and knowledgeable on the defensive end that it makes my job so much easier. If it weren't for those guys, our team wouldn't be in sync.
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