“Shocker” is down. For how long, nobody’s quite sure.
On Wednesday, Virginia lacrosse coach Dom Starsia said that Chris LaPierre, who goes by the nickname of “Shocker,” has been shut down to rest his sprained right knee.
LaPierre injured his posterior cruciate ligament in the team’s first practice of the season and missed both scrimmages. He then didn’t look very good in Saturday’s season opener against Drexel.
“It looked like he was hopping around on one leg,” Starsia said, “and that wasn’t going to be helpful.”
The senior, a two-time USILA All-American, didn’t play in UVa’s 18-4 win over VMI on Tuesday.
Starsia said he hasn’t ruled out LaPierre being ready for Saturday’s game at Stony Brook, but he also wouldn’t be surprised if the midfielder missed a couple more games.
“We expect him back at some point,” Starsia said. “The question simply is, ‘When is he going to feel like he can play confidently?’ It’s a game-to-game kind of thing.”
Starsia added: “Once he gets back, the doctors don’t think he’s going to reinjure it. It’s just a question of when it’s strong enough for him to have some confidence to do the things he needs to do.”
When LaPierre does make his return, there has been some speculation as to how Starsia will utilize the 6-foot-3, 210-pounder.
“The plan had sort of been to run him on the first offensive midfield and use him in those transition situations, and let him stay on the field and play in more settled offensive situations,” Starsia said. “I don’t know whether [the injury] is going to change that.
“At the end of the day, he’s the best face-off wing in the country, maybe [the best] that I’ve ever seen. So I feel like, ‘Boy, if we can get him back to doing those things that he did so well, I’d be happy.’ But if we can also leave him in the game to play a little bit more offense — that would be a bonus.”
On Wednesday, LaPierre was named one of 20 candidates from around the country for the Senior CLASS award. To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete has to be playing at the Division I level and have notable achievements of excellence in four areas — classroom, character, community and competition...Starsia certainly liked what he saw out of Mark Cockerton against VMI. The junior, who had been suspended for the season opener for a team rule violation, had a career-high six goals. “He’s been our best player since the beginning of practice,” Starsia said. “He played [Tuesday] night the way he’s been playing in practice. I know it was VMI, but we think he’s on the verge of having a big year for us.”...Despite notching three assists against VMI, Starsia said freshman James Pannell continues to be bothered by a sprained ankle. “He can’t push off that leg the way he wants to,” Starsia said...Freshman long stick midfielder Dickson Smith injured his knee against VMI. Starsia wasn’t sure about the severity.