Lately, Syracuse’s lax fortune has resembled a rollercoaster. Spirits are up, down, up again, and just when it seems things are going off without a hitch, it’s more bad news.
The beaten and battered crew from last season took another dive back into the doldrums as fans learned two of the group’s most prestigious attack transfers – Nicky Galasso and Mike Daniello – would not see minutes this season.
Galasso transferred from UNC, and was the nation’s top ranked recruit in 2010 according to InsideLacrosse.com. But he’s now sidelined with what SU Athletics has called an “undisclosed lower body injury.” InsideLacrosse claims “multiple sources” believe Galasso broke a bone in “the opposite foot that had hampered him for much of last season with North Carolina, an injury around which the circumstances contributed to his decision to transfer from Chapel Hill.”
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Galasso is an absolute game changer. He was a monster in high school, shredding up the field for 66 goals and 136 points and helping his West Islip team to the top spot in New York and the #2 rank in the nation his senior year. He averaged 3 goals per game. Enough said.
When SU landed the transfer, many of us believed Galasso’s ability could make him the next legend at Syracuse. The story was perfect: the Orange crashed and burned last year, barely scraping its way into the NCAA tournament, and quickly dismissed in the first round by Duke. John Desko and company were back to the drawing board, looking down the barrel at losing their offensive leader (Tim Desko) and most reliable scorer (Tommy Palasek).
Galasso was poised to come in and line up next to junior captain Derek Maltz as the avant garde of offensive punch for SU. Instead, it looks like he’ll get in line for the operating room. SU confirmed Thursday the injury would require surgery.
Daniello’s story is much less clear. The Hopkins transfer is taking a “medical leave of absence,” but the Post-Standard writes he was hospitalized around Christmas. SU has not disclosed the details, but did say Daniello’s injury did not have to do with lacrosse. One thing is for certain: his situation was grave enough to warrant a visit to the ICU, and his eldest brother Nick posted this on Facebook around New Years Eve:
“Thank you everyone for the amazing outpour and concern for my brother. I know a lot of you have been trying to reach either me or my family directly regarding his status. i will try to get back to everyone when I can as its been an exhausting 2 days. Michael is fighting strong in the ICU and we will know more regarding his status in the next 72 hours as these tremendous doctors are doing all they can for him. Thank you again. The Daniello family.”
Senior Midfielder JoJo Marasco on Twitter:
“Please every follow pray for my best friend and family Mike Daniello @mikeydaniello14 I love you kid I’m here for u god bless stay strong.”
Daniello was IL.com’s 10th ranked incoming freshman attackman in the nation and put up 108 goals and 76 assists during his high school career. He is not currently listed on Syracuse’s online roster and is not on campus according to the Post-Standard. During the team’s media day, Desko said Daniello was “home, doing much better.”
For now, SU has to focus on putting itself in the best position to perform on the field, trying out different line combinations with some younger guys at attack and midfield as the preseason continues. The Orange beat Hofstra and rolled Holy Cross by a combined score of 31-16 last weekend. It opens regular season play against Albany in two weeks, but awaits its first true test when #9 Virginia lands in the Dome on March 1.
Posted: Jake Moskowitz