NCAA Team Reviews: Furman Paladins

Photo credit to Furman Sports Information
Photo credit to Furman Sports Information

For the better part of four months, many of us watched some exciting college lacrosse, whether it was on TV, online, or in person. There were good games, which included all of Championship Weekend, and there were bad games, such as low scoring affairs and of course, the horrendous winter weather. I take a look back at all 69 Division I teams and how they fared this season and what to look forward to in 2016.

Check out previous recaps: NJIT Highlanders, UMass Lowell River Hawks, VMI Keydets, Manhattan Jaspers, Canisius Golden Griffins, Robert Morris Colonials, St. John’s Red Storm, Wagner Seahawks, Binghamton Bearcats, Bellarmine Knights, Jacksonville Dolphins


2014 Record 1-12
2014 Conference Record 1-4 (Last in Atlantic Sun)
2014 Scoring Offense 7.31 Goals Per Game (60th in DI)
2014 Scoring Defense 13.85 Goals Against Per Game (Last in DI)
2014 Goals Leader #22 Kenny Meinsen – Junior (22 Gs)
2014 Assists Leader #8 Graham Dabbs – Freshman (11 As)
2014 Points Leader #8 Graham Dabbs – Freshman (31 Pts)
2014 Goaltending Leader #5 Jake Gavin – Freshman (.469 SV %)
2014 Face-Off Leader #12 Hil Blaze – Freshman (.548 FO %)
2014 Ground Balls Leader #12 Hil Blaze – Freshman (71 GBs)
2014 Caused Turnovers Leader #1 Ralph D’Agostino – Sophomore (10 CTs)
2014 Quality Wins VMI (13-12 2OT)
2014 Bad Losses Michigan (11-9), Mercer (9-8)


2015 Record 4-9
2015 Conference Record 3-3 (4th in SoCon)
2015 Scoring Offense 7.23 Goals Per Game (63rd in DI)
2015 Scoring Defense 9.23 Goals Against Per Game (18th in DI)
2015 Goals Leader #22 Kenny Meinsen – Senior (26 Gs)
2015 Assists Leader #44 Jonah Moore – Freshman (13 As)
2015 Points Leader #44 Jonah Moore – Freshman (29 Pts)
2015 Goaltending Leader #39 Reilly McDermott – Freshman (.586 SV %)
2015 Face-Off Leader #12 Hil Blaze – Sophomore (.444 FO %)
2015 Ground Balls Leader #12 Hil Blaze – Sophomore (36 GBs)
2015 Caused Turnovers Leader #51 Joe Stone – Sophomore (10 CTs)
2015 Quality Wins Canisius (9-8 OT), Bellarmine (9-7)
2015 Bad Losses Mount St. Mary’s (7-6), Mercer (11-10 OT)



First year pains for Furman seemed to subside in 2015, going to the SoCon semifinals and losing to Richmond by just a goal to end a very successful season. Their offense and defense were ranked in the 60s in 2014, including ranking dead last in goals against. But in 2015, the defense went up to 18th in the nation, although the offensive production stayed nearly the same.

The beginning of the season had a rough start, losing to UNC followed by a tight 14-11 loss at home against Lehigh. A trip to Denver gave the Paladins a 9-8 OT win to Canisius and a 10-5 loss against soon-to-be National Champion Denver. The Paladins would follow with two more losses against Air Force and Mount St. Mary’s before defeating Bellarmine in their SoCon opener. Furman then lost their next three SoCon games to Mercer in overtime, followed by a seven goal loss to High Point and a six goal loss to Richmond before rebounding to defeat VMI by eight. The final game of the regular season was a must-win against Jacksonville, as a win and a Bellarmine loss would give Furman a birth in the SoCon Tournament. Bellarmine lost to High Point by a goal and Furman defeated Jacksonville by four and faced Richmond in the semifinals, where they couldn’t complete a comeback and fell to the Spiders 8-7.

A very successful season was helped by a very good class of recruits, and they only get better as the team completes more seasons. Only three seniors graduate this season filled with a team of many sophomores, which has a lot of high hopes entering year three in South Carolina.


Blake Center Midfield McCallie School (TN)
Finn Barry Midfield/Attack Saint Ignatius Prep (CA)
Matthew Van Galen Attack/Midfield Hill Academy (ONT)
Huw Staton Defense/LSM Christ Church Episcopal (SC)
Parker Widhelm LSM/Defense St. Christopher’s (VA)
James Powers Midfield Charlotte Catholic (NC)
David Williamson Midfield Paul VI (VA)
Garrett Gomez Goalie Lambert (GA)
Gus Pinsoneault Attack The Woodlands (TX)
Wilson Bedell Midfield/FO St. Christopher’s (VA)
Kyle Weatherford Midfield Boys’ Latin (MD)
Matt Sacks Defense Boys’ Latin (MD)
Miles Cohen LSM/Defense Boys’ Latin (MD)
Teddy Myers Attack Gonzaga (DC)

Furman brings in 14 recruits for the 2016 season, and the list of schools that many of these kids come from is fantastic. There’s McCallie School in growing Tennessee, Saint Ignatius Prep all the way out west in California, and The Woodlands from Texas. But there’s also the traditional schools mixed in there, such as Hill Academy, Paul VI, Boys’ Latin, and Gonzaga. There’s an opportunity for these recruits to mesh with each other and learn their respective styles of lacrosse and for Furman to take the best out of each region. Richie Meade is one of the best coaches in the nation, and with the staff around him, he can make Furman a very good team within a few years.