- The Washington Times - Saturday, March 22, 2003

It was anything but business as usual for the Navy men's team this week.
With the beginning of hostilities in the Middle East, the Midshipmen have more on their minds than classes and games. Although coach Richie Meade said he hasn't noticed any changes in his players, he knows the Mids admire what their future comrades are doing.
"Our players understand the nature of their service, and what they're being asked to do is more than a normal college kid," Meade said. "Some of them have actually trained on the ships that are involved and personally know many of the guys that are serving. From that standpoint, they understand what's going on and understand what the requirement is going to be."
Despite the possible distractions, the Mids (3-2) will visit Stony Brook today before playing Air Force on Tuesday night. A pair of wins could help Navy get back into the hunt for an NCAA tournament bid after last Saturday's 13-8 loss to Rutgers.
"It brings a little bit more meaning to what we're doing," Meade said. "It brings a little more disappointment to the way we played [against Rutgers]."

Cavaliers roll to Hopkins
Top-ranked Virginia's brutal biennial block of March road games ends tonight when the Cavaliers visit No.4 Johns Hopkins. Virginia (5-0) already has defeated Syracuse and Princeton the NCAA finalists the last three years on the road.
"It's a scary proposition when it starts," Virginia coach Dom Starsia said. "You offer me one, I may take it. … You offer me all three, I'd be ecstatic."
The Cavaliers could get all three thanks to their balance. The attack has developed quickly, and Chris Rotelli has anchored a strong midfield. Throw in a solid defense and potential All-American goalie Tillman Johnson and Virginia can match up well against nearly every opponent.
"Almost every game required a different part of the team to step up," Starsia said. "It was the attack up at the [Carrier] Dome. It was Rotelli and the midfield against Princeton. Against Towson, it was our defense and Tillman."

Rutgers reversal
When the preseason polls were conducted, Rutgers hardly seemed to be a noteworthy omission. After all, the Scarlet Knights had not reached the NCAA tournament since 1991 and went 2-12 a year ago.
Yet Rutgers (6-0) has surged to No.10 in this week's rankings entering today's game against Vermont and could contend for the ECAC championship.
"They hung together last year," said coach Jim Stagnitta, who took over the program 16 months ago when Bill Dirrigl left for Loyola after one season in Piscataway, N.J.
"I got there in November, and it was damage control for nine months," Stagnitta said. "They persevered. We have a lot of schedule left. We're not a great team, but we play pretty well together."

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