Chrome LC Training Camp is a Battle

Chrome Lacrosse Club’s Training Camp is a War

By Nick Zoroya

May 29, 2023

Headed into camp this year Chrome Lacrosse Club Head Coach Tim Soudan felt that the roster was the deepest and most competitive that the club’s ever had. Last week we examined some of the position battles and discussed who is a lock and who is at risk. With cuts being made tomorrow for the 25 man roster, it’s now or never for players on the bubble.

With a deepened roster and many tough decisions to come, the squad started off practice playing Sixes. The intent, I’m told, was to see players get a ton of reps while seeing how they do in transition, unsettled situations, and evaluating individual versatility. 

Originally we expected to see a battle at attack for the third spot, AKA the Brendan Nichtern role, between rookie Jack Myers and veteran Jackson Morrill. Morrill has a firm grasp on the position and we should expect to see him starting at attack moving forward. Myers missed camp due to a medical issue, but Coach Soudan indicated we could see him at some point in the future. If we do see Myers it will assuredly be through the midfield.

Rookie Updates

Fourth overall pick Sam Handley is fitting in nicely, already taking advantage of the PLL 2-point arc. Word from camp is that he’s gelling nicely and in addition to his physical gifts, he’s impressing people with his high lacrosse IQ.

Troy Hettinger is athletic, versatile, and could be used at LSM or defensive midfield if needed. He’s adjusting to the pro game and coaches are excited to see him in the upcoming scrimmages.

Cross Ferrara is a lacrosse guy. Fresh off of a DIII National Championship with Salisbury on Sunday, he’s already reported to camp. Coaches will work to get him caught up on the tactical side and he will participate immediately. He’s expected to see a lot of time at midfield to see how his game translates to the PLL level.

John Geppert (Maryland) has different attributes than Hettinger at the LSM spot. He’s playing well, but like all LSM’s on the roster, coaches are eager to see what he can do in the upcoming scrimmages.

Midfield is Muddy

The guys are leaving it all out there and Coach Soudan will have to make some very tough decisions Tuesday night. The new face-off possession shot clock (32 seconds after winning a face-off) will likely lead to less substitutions meaning more two-way midfielders. The perfect example of how the team is adjusting is seeing Mike Messenger play offense this season. Messenger is getting runs on offense in addition to his 2022 role as a defensive midfielder. 

D Pole Dilemma

With ten poles at camp there is plenty of competition for a roster spot. Veterans Mike Manley, JT Giles-Harris, Nick Grill, and Jesse Bernhardt are all locks to make the team. Eli Salama is increasing his hold over an LSM spot every rep. The coaches are waiting to see how players do in scrimmage situations but it's between veterans Gibson Smith IV, Greg Weyl, Ryan McNulty, and rookies Geppert and Hettinger for the final one or two spots at pole.

Side Notes:

- The new rules are playing a major factor in how Coach Soudan creates the roster (article forthcoming)

- Chrome Lacrosse Club scrimmages Redwoods LC Tuesday evening

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