(Photo Courtesy of Georgetown Athletics)
Since Kevin Warne took over the reigns at Georgetown, it has been a bumpy ride. The Hoyas have enjoyed some enormous highs and some very rough lows. But as of recent, the Hoyas have seen a resurgence under Warne and many see Georgetown as being back.
Since going 2-12 and 4-10 in 2016 and 2017, the Hoyas have seen nothing but success. They won two straight Big East titles in 2018 and 2019 and put on an impressive showing in the NCAA Tournament each year, despite seeing a first round exit.
In 2020, the Hoyas could have broken their 13-year NCAA Quarterfinals drought, however the season took a different turn once the Coronavirus outbreak hit and shut everything down. Before the season was cancelled, the Hoyas boasted a 6-0 record and No.10 ranking. And while we will never get to see how things could have turned out for the Hoyas in the shortened season, they will look to carry much of that same energy over into the 2021 season. And this coming spring could certainly be a special one for the Hoyas.
During 2020, the Georgetown housed one of the best defensive units in the nation. That looks to be the case again in 2021, with the majority of their production on that end returning. The two-headed moster of Gibson Smith (7CT/24GB) and James Donaldson (5CT/5GB) will likely be even more productive next season with the duo being another year older, senior and sophomore, and having one year under their belt together. In addition, senior Joe LiCalzi and junior Alex Mazzone should take another step and contributed similarly, if not more, than they did a year ago.
Perhaps the biggest returnee on defense is the man in between the pipes, Owen McElroy. Serving as the Hoyas’ starting goalie for the past two season, posted a DI-best .630 save percentage last season. He has been the key to this defense the past few seasons and looks to continue playing at a very high level as a junior this coming spring.
While having the majority of top scoring defense in DI back in 2021 is a huge plus for the Hoyas, they certainly also return some significant pieces that aren’t on the back end. And in fact, some would say that some of the pieces they return on their top-10 scoring offense from a year ago gives them more of an advantage then some of their returners on defense.
The Hoyas will return three of their top five scorers from a year ago, including attackmen Jake Carraway (23G/11A), who is returning for a fifth season, and Dylan Watson (23G/2A). The two accounted for nearly half of the Hoyas’ offensive production last season and were part of one of the most productive attack units in the nation.
In addition to two of their most productive offensive weapons returning, the Hoyas will also see sophomore Graham Bundy Jr. and junior Declan McDermott return. The two midfielders only started and appeared in four of the Hoyas’ six games last season, but were very impactful. Bundy recorded 13 points (8G/5A) while McDermott had 14 points (10G/4A). Both should see increased time in 2021 and take another step forward in their development and production. The two look to be the future at midfield for the Hoyas over the next two seasons, and that should be music to the ears for Hoya fans.
Also, Colgate grad transfer Nicky Petkevich will be using his fifth year of eligibility at Georgetown. The third-leading scorer for the Raiders in 2020, Petkevich tallied 18 points (9G/9A). He is expected to come in and be that third attackman right away, and he should make this offense even more deadly.
With as much production, young and veteran, returning at both the attack and midfield spot, the Hoyas could very much produce another top-10 caliber offense in 2021. They will certainly cause trouble for any defense they face this coming spring. And as previously mentioned, the same can also be said on the opposite end of the field.
The Hoyas also return their starting faceoff man in Jame Reilly. Last season as a sophomore, Reilly went 73-for-106 (69%) at the dot. In 2019, he was just under 50% on 419 attempts. He should continue to improve and be able to go, at least, 50% at the dot next season with a full schedule.