Young Players Look To Make A Mark For Worcester Prep

BERLIN — Worcester Prep’s boys’ varsity lacrosse team looks deep and talented as they prepare for another campaign against some of the stiffest competition on the shore and elsewhere.

Worcester won its third straight Eastern Shore Independent Athletic Conference (ESIAC) championship last year, and with talented returning players up and down the roster, it appears the Mallards should be set up for a shot at a fourth straight this year.

With upperclassmen leadership all over the roster, Worcester again appears loaded as they head into the 2012 season, but it’s a considerably younger team than the Mallards have fielded in recent years.

On attack, Worcester returns two prolific scorers in Ryan McGuire and Jake Emche. Expected to make a big contribution on attack this season also is junior Gordon Abercrombie.

In the midfield, Worcester has three key starters returning including senior Matteo Petrara and juniors Harrison Brennan and Henry Hastings. Joining the three veterans at midfield will be relative newcomers in juniors Alec Zarif and Chris Adkins along with sophomore Jack Marshall.

Seniors Zach Jacobs and Logan Bellinger will anchor the defense and will be joined by sophomore Luke Payne. Freshman Will Hastings will be counted on to hold down the goalie position this season for the Mallards.

With talented veterans and promising newcomers all over the roster, Worcester Coach Kevin Gates could hardly contain his excitement about the upcoming season.

“I don’t think I’ve ever looked more forward to a season in all my 20-plus years as a coach,” he said. “What I have is a group of young men that are coachable and want to be there and get better every day. What more can I ask for?”

The Mallards competed in the Severn Play Day last Saturday and will travel to the Cape Play Day this weekend.

Worcester will scrimmage crosstown rival Stephen Decatur and Parkside next week before opening the regular on the road against Delmarva Christian on March 28.

The Mallards do not play at home until an April 12 date with Sussex Tech.

One of the most anticipated games on the Worcester Prep schedule is a home game against St. Paul’s of Baltimore on April 21 when the Mallards can put their skills up against some of the top competition in the state.