Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

MEN’S LACROSSE | In Season of Change, Georgetown Hopes to Extend Dynasty

Despite losing a considerable amount of talent, Georgetown men’s lacrosse is ready to challenge for its sixth consecutive Big East title.

Uncertainty surrounds the Georgetown men’s lacrosse team heading into the 2024 season, their 55th as an NCAA Division I program. Under Head Coaches Dave Urick (1990-2012) and Kevin Warne (2013-present), the program has emerged as one of the best in the nation, boasting a 321-165 record. The team has also claimed five consecutive Big East titles, earning a spot in the NCAA tournament each year. 

Building on a Strong Foundation

In 2023, the Hoyas boasted an elite 13-4 record, with impressive victories over lacrosse powerhouses Princeton, Denver and Yale. Ultimately, the team fell 17-14 in the national quarterfinals to Virginia. 

Last year’s success was in large part due to a star-studded roster bolstered by the transfer portal, highlighted by United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association (USILA) All-Americans and Premier Lacrosse League (PLL) first-round selections attackman Tucker Dordevic and defenseman Will Bowen.

The Hoyas, ranked first in the Big East preseason rankings and twelfth nationally, will turn to established veterans and some newcomers to alleviate these significant losses and continue the program’s historic excellence.

Important Returners

Most of the pressure will fall on the shoulders of top midfielder and graduate student Graham Bundy Jr. Named a team captain for the season and a USA Lacrosse Magazine first-team preseason All-American, Bundy Jr. enters his fifth year having started every game of his Georgetown career. 

The 6’1” future pro was an offensive machine in each of his first three seasons, accounting for 13 points in just four games as a first-year, 48 as a sophomore and a jaw-dropping 70 as a junior. This mark set the program record for midfielders and earned him 2022 USILA first-team All-American honors. 

However, in 2023, Bundy Jr. saw his production dip, with the offense running through the generational talent of Dordevic. Scoring 44 points with a career-low shooting percentage (.252), he fell to the USILA All-American second team. Though his campaign was still highly successful by any metric other than his own, Bundy Jr. will certainly look to improve on his mini “senior slump” and most definitely possesses the skills, athleticism and get-to-the-rack mentality to do so. 

On the defensive side of the ball, senior Wallace Halpert is poised to have his best season yet. After transitioning from starting long-stick midfield to close defense in 2023, Halpert doubled his career caused turnovers from 25 to 50, which puts him fifth in program history. He also grabbed 47 ground balls — almost three per game — which earned crucial extra possessions for the Hoyas. 

GUHoyas | Graduate midfielder Graham Bundy Jr. will be the focal point for the Georgetown men’s lacrosse team’s offense as he aims to reach his All-American heights again.

Other notable returners include senior attackman TJ Haley, senior long-stick midfielder Will Tominovich, sophomore midfielder Patrick Crogan and top short-stick defensive midfielders senior Dylan Hess and graduate student Will Godine. 

Haley, whose passing game rivals that of any in college lacrosse, dished out 25 assists in 2023, becoming Georgetown’s all-time program leader with 104 in only three seasons. Tominovich, who swapped starting roles with Halpert early in the season, had an impressive 21 caused turnovers and 54 ground balls, anchoring the squad’s transition play. 

Expectations are also high for Hess, an Inside Lacrosse third-team preseason media All-American, who combined with Godine for 17 caused turnovers and 71 critical ground balls. 

Finally, the youngster Crogan, with his blazing speed and shiftiness, also had a solid season in his own right, starting 12 games and putting up 15 points. Poised to be one of the more effective pure dodgers on the roster, a sophomore leap from Crogan could do wonders for the team’s offensive dynamism, especially with opposing teams honing their defense on Bundy Jr. and graduate transfer Alexander Vardaro. 

Notable Newcomers

Vardaro, named an Inside Lacrosse second-team preseason media All-American, is perhaps the biggest addition for the Hoyas in 2024. The midfielder and former Princeton player started 44 of his 50 career games for the Tigers, scoring 75 goals along with 45 assists. 

Named a USILA second-team All-American in 2023, Vardaro was a key contributor in Princeton’s impressive regular and postseason runs, in which they won the Ivy League championship and lost in the NCAA first round. 

Vardaro will almost certainly start at midfield alongside Bundy Jr., where he will make an immediate impact with his balanced skillset. 

Another notable newcomer is first-year goalkeeper Anderson Moore, a five-star recruit and ranked eighth on the Inside Lacrosse Power 100 Incoming Freshman Rankings. The Hoyas somewhat struggled between the pipes last year, alternating between then-graduate student Dartmouth transfer Danny Hincks (.513 save percentage in 10 starts) and then-sophomore Michael Scharfenberger (.426 in 7 starts). With the loss of Hincks, Moore will compete with now-junior Scharfenberger for the starting job. 

A third key addition to the program is first-year defenseman Ty Banks, ranked No. 13 on the incoming rankings. Banks has a good shot at immediate playing time alongside Halpert and could help alleviate the loss of Bowen with his size and athleticism.

Schedule Speculation

Georgetown’s season will commence on foreign turf this Saturday, Feb. 3 in a much-anticipated clash against a solid Loyola (MD) squad. Their taxing and frigid February continues with a home contest against No. 6 Johns Hopkins; an away showdown versus No. 17 Penn; and a heavyweight matchup with No. 1 Notre Dame, the reigning national champions. 

The Hoyas’ schedule will likely ease into March, as they take on a series of unranked teams in Brown, High Point and Dartmouth, all of whom will be gunning for an upset and a place in the national top 20. The schedule then continues into Big East play.

Georgetown’s success hinges on whether the team can maintain a cohesive identity amid drastic personnel changes. The sky is the limit for the Hoyas, as they begin their long march to the postseason.

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