Cavalier Corner

April 2017

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APRIL 2017 ◆ 31 cavalier profile MIKE D'AMARIO Third-Year • Lacrosse Mike D'Amario is feeling very at home in Virginia lacrosse's new up-tempo, high-octane offense. Through 10 games in 2017, he had already surpassed his goals, assists and points total from 2016 (15 games) and had almost doubled his shooting percentage. The third-year attacker from Niskayuna, N.Y., said UVA's new offense and the style of play of head coach Lars Tiffany is responsible for his increased numbers. "I grew up playing box [indoor] lacrosse and playing fast," D'Amario said. "The way I was taught to play was very frenetic just like Coach Tiffany's pace. The staff features a style similar to what I grew up playing and have known my whole life as opposed to the more methodical, slow pace in years prior here." The two-time high school All-American received interest from lacrosse pow- ers like Johns Hopkins, Duke, North Carolina, Ohio State, Michigan, Brown, Rutgers and Delaware, yet despite the deliberate pace of former head coach Dom Starsia, D'Amario selected the Hoos. "When I was a kid growing up, I never thought I was going to play at Virginia," he admitted. "I was talking to friends back home that maybe we'd be lucky and go to New Albany if we were good enough. "When I came here and talked to Coach Starsia and coach Marc Van Arsdale, it was hardly anything about lacrosse. I think that's what made me like it so much; how much it seemed like they just wanted me to come to Charlottesville and be a part of team." Through April 2, D'Amario was tied for the team lead in goals (25) and shoot- ing percentage (.417), and was tied for third in points (33). He also credits as- sistant coach Sean Kirwan for his offensive surge. "He's such an offensive mastermind," he said. "He's been able to work with me, not trying to change me but teaching me." "Mike a creative player with the confidence and powerful shot to be a signifi- cant offensive threat," Tiffany said. After missing the NCAA Tournament for the second time in four seasons, D'Amario says the 2017 Hoos are focused on playing their style of lacrosse. "Our coaches tell us don't focus on the wins and the losses, focus on playing our type of lacrosse at our pace and the rest will figure itself out," he said. — Greg Waters ◆ Photo by Matt Riley/courtesy UVA.

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