(Photo: Doug Andersen)
Arizona State lacrosse’s starting goalie Preston Andersen has departed from the program. This is less than a year after Andersen won countless accolades as a freshman, along with a Final Four finish in his first year at ASU.
The reasons Andersen cited for his departure were both academic and financial.
“I basically wasn’t doing as well as I had to academically,” Andersen said. “Sending me back for 20 grand just to be another semester behind wasn’t ideal for my family.”
Last season Andersen totaled a .614 save percentage, along with an impressive 4.43 goals allowed per game. He was second in the Southwestern Lacrosse Conference in GAA, and 12th in the nation.
After an honorable mention among last year’s All-Americans, Andersen was on the road to rivaling the career of long-time Sun Devil goalie Dylan Westfall, who’d consistently led the program on deep postseason runs from 2010 through 2012.
The 2013 preseason ended with Brandon Propp as the starter for the opener against Cal. After a rough start for Propp, however, Andersen was put in in relief, and he never looked back, finishing year with an SLC-high 21 games played.
From here, the likely starter for the Sun Devils is Chris DeLuca, who played behind Westfall during the 2011 season as a freshman. Now a senior, DeLuca will have to take on the expectations of being in net for the MCLA’s preseason favorite.
“DeLuca is looking good,” ASU head coach Chris Malone said. “He played here before, and I think he’s got what it takes in net.”
With Andersen’s departure, all three of Arizona State’s rostered goalies from last season are no longer on the team (Propp, Ryan Davis). There are now two senior goalies on the roster, DeLuca and Michael Heritage, and one freshman, Chris Roufanis.
ASU’s season starts on Feb. 15 against Stanford in the Pac-12 Jamboree in Los Angeles, CA.
You can reach Trey Lanthier on Twitter @TreyLanthier or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org