Yuri Sendzimir/The Mirror

He’s baaaack!

After missing six games with an illness, Brent Adams ’12 has not missed a beat and returned to the Fairfield Stags men’s lacrosse lineup.  In the last two games, he has recorded 10 points, including five goals.

With Adams on the field, the team has a much improved offense when considering that without him they were last in the league.

“Having Brent back is terrific,” third season head coach Andrew Copeland said.  “He can get to the goal.  Just him as an athlete really makes a difference on our offense.”

The midfielder played in this season’s opening game, but would not run on the field again for over a month.  The Stags would split those six contests.

Fairfield has struggled without their leading goal scorer from a year ago, only averaging a little over 7.5 goals per game, which was last in the seven team ECAC conference.

“For me, it’s just great to be back,” Adams said after the Stags 13-11 victory over Bellarmine last Saturday.  “[I was] chopping at the bit to come out and play.”

He would lead the squad with four goals in the win that snapped their two game losing skid.

The 2010 First-team All ECAC selection, Adams recorded 16 goals last season and entered the final home ECAC game this year with only two.

While it will be difficult for his numbers to come even close to what you can expect, his comeback can ignite a spark for an offense that has sometimes fizzled throughout this year.

“I think it helped me out to be out,” Adams said.  “I’m just so anxious to play now and I’m just so pumped up for every game.”

In the win over Bellarmine, Adams helped the Stags score a season-high 13 goals, while contributing with four goals and two assists.

With the re-addition of one of their leading active points leaders, Fairfield will try to become more consistent on the offensive side.  Entering the weekend, they were dead last in the league in Goals Per Game.

Despite starting the 2011 season with 90 percent of their offense returning, the squad has had a tough time to put consistent numbers on the board.  In fact, the team had failed to reach double-digits in any game this season.

But with the bad comes the good.  While the Stags are looking up from the bottom in the ECAC when it comes to offense, they are looking down from the top when it comes to defense.  They have held opponents to nearly a goal per game, less than any other team in the conference.

“We’ve been sound defensively,” Copeland said.

Leading the impressive play is their man in the cage.  Charlie Cipriano ’12 leads the conference in save percentage and is one of the bright spots on the team. He earned the ECAC Defensive Player of the Week honor after an impressive 13 save effort against Bellarmine.

“Charlie’s been fantastic all year.  I have to tip my hat to him,” Copeland said.  “I think if you could have a mid-year MVP, it will probably clearly be Charlie Cipriano.”

The Stags are now 2-1 in the ECAC and while Copeland admits that the team is a little behind where he would like them to be, he knows there is plenty of lacrosse yet to play.

Fairfield needs to find more of a balance between its offense and defense as the conference schedule heats up.  They better learn fast, considering they are facing three nationally ranked teams in their next five games.

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