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Cannons in the Coaching Corner

March 18, 2016
Several Cannons players are active in the spring as college and high school coaches in New England and beyond.

2010 MLL MVP and Offensive Player of the Year Matt Poskay joined the Drew University coaching staff prior to the 2010 season. Drew University is located in Madison, NJ, a short drive from Poskay’s home town of Clark. The Drew Rangers compete in the NCAA Division III.

In 2010, the Rangers finished the regular season at 8-6 and they were second in the Landmark Conference with a 4-2 record. However, they were upset 14-5 in the conference semifinals by Catholic University.

Drew got the 2011 season off to a strong start with wins over Kings College, 11-4, and Whittier College, 9-8 OT, but have struggled of late with back to back losses on March 16 th and 19 th, falling 11-9 to Oneonta State and 13-6 to Hamilton College. Poskay and the Rangers turned things around with wins over Keane University and Stockton College. Drew faces off against Montclair State on March 30 before their conference games get underway on April 2 when they head to Washington, DC looking for revenge against Catholic University.

Cannons goalie Kip Turner, 2010 MLL Goalie of the Year, joined Brown University’s coaching staff in October 2010. The Bears have had an up and down season so far with a season opening 13-4 win over Quinnipiac before dropping two straight road games to UMass, 9-6, and Hartford, 8-6. The Bears got back on track by defeating St Joeseph’s 11-4.

The Bears opened their conference schedule on March 19 against Harvard. Brown trailed by one goal heading into the fourth quarter before the Crimson were able to pull away with three unanswered goals to secure a 11-7 win.

Brown defeated Vermont 12-10 on March 26 and will head to Durham, NC on March 29 for a tough contest against Duke. The schedule doesn’t get any easier when the Bears get back into their conference schedule at Princeton on April 2.

Working with Turner has apparently benefitted senior goalie Matt Chriss. Chriss has seen his goals against average drop from 10.18 in 2010 to 7.32 this year while has save percentage has gone from .513 to .638 in that same period of time.

Prior to the 2011 season, Cannons defenseman Garrett Pedley joined Saint Anselm College in Goffstown, NH as an assistant coach. The Hawks compete in the NCAA Division II.

After an up and down 7-8 season in 2010, the Hawks have struggled in 2011. Saint Anselm lost its first three games of the year, all on the road, to Mercy, Malloy and C.W. Post by scores of 7-6, 14-7 and 10-2, respectively. The Hawks opened their conference schedule on March 26 losing at Le Moyne 14-2. Saint A’s will finally hold their home opener on March 30 against Southern New Hampshire.

Cannons defenseman Patrick Gaffney is now in his third season as head coach of the Anna Maria College men’s lacrosse team. The AMCats, out of Paxton, MA, compete in the NCAA Division III.

Gaffney has been the head coach since the team’s inception in 2009 when they went 1-10. 2010 saw an improvement to 4-12 with an 0-10 record in The Commonwealth Coast Conference (TCCC). The Amcats showed some promise this year starting out 2-4. However, they remained winless in the TCCC with losses to Western New England and Endicott.

Coming off an 18-1 win against Wheelock, Gaffney and Anna Maria picked up their first conference win with a 9-7 win against Nichols College at home. The joy was short lived as they fell to Salve Regina on March 29 to fall  to 4-5 on the year and 1-3 in the TCCC. 

Cannons back-up goalie Bruce Bickford joined Harvard prior to the 2011 season as a volunteer coach. The Crimson have played well this year, amassing a record of 5-1 early, losing to nationally-ranked Hofstra.

Harvard opened its conference schedule with an 11-7 win at Brown before losing to Dartmouth 9-8. The Crimson now sit at #20 in the Inside Lacrosse Media Poll and will take on #16 UMass tomorrow evening at Harvard Stadium in a game that will be crucial for both teams.

Cannons midfielder Matt Smalley will begin his first seasons as a head coach this spring at Cumberland High School in Cumberland, Rhode Island. The Cumberland team will move up to the state’s Division II after winning the state championship in 2009 and finishing second last year. Smalley served as an assist last year and was promoted this spring.

You can click here for more information about Smalley and the Cumberland High School team.

Rounding on the Cannons players who coach is new arrival JJ Morrissey. Morrissey was picked up by the Cannons in December’s Supplemental Draft and coaches lacrosse and the Fessenden School in Newton, MA, where he also teaches history. Fessenden is a junior prep school and Morrissey will be coaching eighth and ninth graders in varsity lacrosse, as well as hockey and football.