Starsia, who recently became a grandfather for the second time, had to do some finagling on both ends of the field as injuries decimated his team in 2015. Defensively, the Cavaliers lost All-American Tanner Scales, who ruptured his Achilles in the final spring scrimmage before the official start of the season. As a result, Virginia’s close defense was anchored by walk-on senior Davi Sacco, and supplemented with freshmen Logan Greco and Scott Hooper. Shortstick midfielders Carlson Milikin, Will McNamara and Jack Falk were all first-time starters, as were their longstick counterparts Cooper Fersen and Michael Howard.
While that inexperience was a disadvantage a year ago, it has become Virginia’s greatest advantage this season. All the aforementioned players not only have significant playing time under their belts now, but they also have significant playing time against some of the best competition in the country. With Scales fully healed and already cleared for full activity in the fall, he brings maturity and skill to a defense that has had a year to grow together.Fallball All-Access: Virginia, Inside Lacrosse