Syracuse, Brandon Mullins prepare to handle lethal Duke midfielder Myles Jones

first_imgJohn Desko’s eyes widened and he nodded in agreement when asked about the threat that Duke midfielders Myles Jones and Deemer Class pose.It’s the latter who tallied 13 points in two games against Syracuse last year, but the former who presents a force unlike any the Orange will face all season.“Myles Jones is probably the most dominant player in college lacrosse right now,” Desko said.At 6 feet, 4 inches and 240 pounds, Jones possesses the stature of an NFL tight end, with speed and a hard shot that both drew praise from SU players. But the midfielder’s expanding skill set is what has the Orange worried most, and defender Brandon Mullins will likely be tasked with slowing down the nation’s best midfielder when No. 1 Syracuse (6-0, 1-0 Atlantic Coast) faces No. 4 Duke (7-1) at 12:30 p.m. in the Carrier Dome on Sunday.In 2014, Jones had 26 assists in 20 games played. Through eight games this year, he already has a team-high 21 assists to complement his 24 goals. And while ranking fifth in the country at almost six points per game, he tops all midfielders in that category.AdvertisementThis is placeholder text“He’s obviously big and fast and has a really hard shot, but what’s made him more dangerous recently is his ability to feed,” Mullins said. “… That makes him even more dangerous.”Similar to last year, the Orange is likely to throw two long poles on Jones and Class, Mullins said. But unlike a season ago, Jones will bring a different dimension that will force Syracuse to be wary of what Jones is capable of if he is double-teamed.It’s rare that a defender pushes up to guard a midfielder — it’ll likely be a long-stick midfielder guarding Class — but Jones is good enough to draw Mullins, whom the Orange usually uses to defend other teams’ best attacks.The SU defender pointed out how an extra defender often slides quickly to Jones, but this year Jones has shown the presence to feed it off to the next open man instead of taking it himself.“I think freshman, sophomore year he was more of a dodger and shooter,” SU midfielder Henry Schoonmaker said. “He’s become more of a passer now that he’s got people looking at him more.”While Jones has 2 inches and almost 30 pounds on Mullins, the Syracuse senior has already helped limit the likes of Siena’s Richie Hurley, Army’s John Glesener and Johns Hopkins’ Shack Stanwick.Now, the Orange’s top defender will face his toughest test of the season if Desko decides to push him up to defend at the midfield line.“Most teams don’t have a player of that size and that physical that can match up with him,” Syracuse attack Kevin Rice said of Jones. “Brandon’s as physical and big as it comes in the country in terms of defenders.” Comments Facebook Twitter Google+ Related Stories The natural: Midfielder Jones provides freak athleticism, lethal threat for Blue Devils as team attempts to seize 3rd straight national championshipcenter_img Published on March 21, 2015 at 3:47 pm Contact Matt: [email protected] | @matt_schneidmanlast_img

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *